I am happy because I choose to be

By Nina Steele 

Happiness, that ultimate state of mind that seems to elude so many people, including those who on the face of it, should be the happiest. I think we all agree that at the core of all of us is a strong desire to be happy, yet when we look around, it seems that instead of taking decisions that will lead to that happiness, many people are doing the complete opposite and inevitably, unhappiness is what they get.

I know a few people who have everything, yet most of the time, all you hear them do is complain. There seems to always be that belief that they can only be happy if they get to a particular place in their lives or obtain a particular thing. And of course, the goalpost keeps moving.

I know exactly how that feels, because I was one of those people once. It is all about confidence, I have found. The more confident you get, the less you come to care about the noise of the world around you. Yes, it does feel like a jungle out there at times. And as such, a lot of courage and self-belief is needed in order to survive intact and crucially, to be happy.

Lack of confidence means that too many people are afraid of upsetting those around them and by so doing, end up being unhappy. For example, I am estranged from a close relative because his family life is one drama after another, in complete contrast to my own life. I had to choose between saying goodbye to the peace of mind I worked so tirelessly to achieve, just because he is family, or keep away from him. I chose the latter option of course.

Many people desperately seek happiness, yet they are afraid to make those difficult decisions that we all have to make at some point in our lives. No one has ever become happy on the cheap. Happiness is both earned and a conscious choice.

I tend to be quite ruthless when it comes to my happiness, maybe because of my background. Having to fight for survival back in Africa, has inevitably made a lasting impact on me as a person. That same background is the reason why I am grateful for pretty much everything and never take anything for granted. Throughout the day, I say thank you to the Universe for everything I do. My life is lived in a constant state of gratitude.

The pursuit of happiness is why I was able to come to terms with not having children in such a drastic manner. By making a conscious decision to be happy, I managed to turn the potentially negative experience that is being childless not by choice, into a positive one.

Happiness is within the reach of all of us, and ultimately, it is up to us, whether or not it materialises in our life.

Childless and happy


  1. Dann Alexander says

    Marvelous. Needed to read something like this today.

  2. Thanks Dann. Life throws us many challenges and some of them can be quite unpleasant. However, looking back, once the dust has settled, we realise that although painful at the time, some of those challenges have had a transformational effect on us and that they were not in vain.

    I have to continuously remind myself to see the positive side of life. It is either that or being consumed by negativity, which is ultimately, a destructive force and therefore leads to deep unhappiness.

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