“The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts … take care that you entertain no notions unsuitable to virtue and reasonable nature.” –Marcus Aurelius. Simply stated, the way you think will decide the mood you have. If you’re an optimist, you are probably going to be a bright person. Just ask me, because it’s true.
Thoughts often determine what my mood is. A worry leads to sadness, regret leads to sadness, and a surprise leads to sadness. A care, a chance, and a surprise lead to cheer. Learning to control my thoughts has allowed me to keep my moods from moving up and down at a regular pace. It has kept me from becoming a pessimist.
I remember moments of what should have been great sadness in my life where I didn’t feel sad. As long as my thoughts remained distant from the event, I was kept in high spirits, and free from doubt. Other times though, sad, worrisome thoughts could make a great time have a little less luster and shine. Looking back, it seems absurd that I became depressed in those moments, and not the bad ones. Maybe I just feared about losing the good moments too much.
At one time it became important not to lose control of my thoughts. About two years ago, my brother started to get into trouble in college and with the law. This was the person who I felt it was my obligation to live up to, to get a great scholarship like him, and be a success. The trouble he was in ended in my brother losing his scholarship, dropping out, and my parents’ disappointment and sadness. It seemed to be the worst even my family had gone through.
I should have been angry, furious even, at my brother, and at times I felt I needed to be. Instead, I distanced my thoughts from the event, focusing on school, friends, and music. I didn’t want to give my parents something else to worry about, something else that they felt they would have to solve. If I had gotten angry, I would have only added to the problem, and that was the last think I wanted to do.
The quality of thoughts reflects the quality of feelings. Those two separate elements will always, to me at least, are bound together because of that, and will be dependent on each other. That is the reason I will always grant each with the same importance, because each would not be what they are without the other. Just ask me, because it’s true.
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