Everyone has their own personal outlook on life. Many of us don't choose it - we just follow our feelings, shaped by circumstance and experience. Others decide to choose what their outlook will be, and follow their minds instead. The man in this story shows us that it takes some wisdom to be able to live happily...
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A 92-year-old man, short, very well-presented, who took great care of his appearance, was moving into an old people’s home one day. His wife of 70 years had recently died, and he was obliged to leave his home. After waiting several hours in the retirement home lobby, he gently smiled as I told him his room was ready.
As he slowly walked to the elevator, using his cane, I described his small room to him, including the sheet hung at the window, which served as a curtain.
"I like it very much", he said, with the enthusiasm of an eight-year-old boy who had just been given a new puppy.
"Sir, you haven’t even seen the room yet. Hang on a moment, we are almost there."
"That has nothing to do with it," he replied. "Happiness is something I choose in advance. Whether or not I like the room does not depend on the furniture, or the decor – rather it depends on how I decide to see it. It is already decided in my mind that I like my room. It is a decision I make every morning when I wake up.
"I can choose. I can spend my day in bed enumerating all the difficulties that I have with the parts of my body that no longer work very well, or I can get up and give thanks to heaven for those parts that are still in working order. Every day is a gift, and as long as I can open my eyes, I will focus on the new day, and all the happy memories that I have made during my life.
"Old age is like a bank account. You withdraw in later life what you have deposited along the way. "
For a moment, I thought about the old man's words, and it all made sense. He made me realize that in life, we have to deposit all the happiness we can in our bank account of memories. Like this, we will always have a trove of them to cherish.
I would like to thank you for your part in filling my account with happy memories, which I am still continuing to fill…
And I remind you, that to live a happy life, you have to free your heart from hate, free your mind from worry, live simply, give more, and expect less.
That's what the wise old man lives by.
If you have been touched by this message, send it to your loved ones and your friends. It's the way we touch each other with simple truths that spreads goodness in the world. Who knows? A miracle might happen as a result…