October 7, 2009
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One of my favorite quotes, which has inspired me in many ways, comes from Abraham Lincoln, our sixteenth president. “People are just about as happy as they make up their mind to be.” When I read this quote I was coming off of a bad experience that had an affected my life in a way that I didn’t realize at the time. A much as I don’t like to admit it, the book was a manual on how to be a successful teenager. So, there I was, kind of depressed reading this book, and this quote just jumps out at me. “People are just about as happy as they make up their mind to be.”
I spent a while really thinking about this. After all the thinking, I realized how true it was. I thought about why I was sad, and all I could think of what that, essentially I was letting another person’s opinion influence the way I thought about myself. Then, I thought, who is the main person who should be controlling that? The answer is the one and only me. Now sure, my parents and close friends definitely have an impact but, ultimately it’s my job. So right then and there I decided to test out Honest Abe’s theory. The next day at school that person kept up their name calling and sarcastic comments, but I was in control! I didn’t let that bother me because I had made up my mind to be happy and I was! Now, I understand that there are certain circumstances where you can’t help but be sad or mad. For example, the loss of a family member, you are going to be upset about that to say the least. Wait, I guess Abe thought about that too, perhaps that’s why he says “People are just about as happy as they make up their mind to be.”
My conclusion of this is that Abe must have been a pretty smart guy because he’s right you are, for the most part, in control of your emotions. So the next time you are sad or mad, think could you make up your mind to be a little happier?

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