Happiness and life fulfillment is such an elusive concept which most of us struggle with. For all of our technological advances and modern comforts, the rate of depression continues to climb throughout much of the world. Why is that?

I believe there are seven basic principles to true happiness and self fulfillment. In this article, I'm going to describe the first of those basic prinicples, which is really the foundation on which happiness depends. And it's a principle which is so often overlooked.

Happiness is a Decision

We're all so caught up in the pursuit of happiness that tend to view happiness as a destination. It's something we're conditioned to strive for. And operating from that perspective, we seldom seem to get there except for specific fleeting moments.

But happiness is not a destination at all. Rather, it's a state of being. And it's a state of being that can only be achieved in the "now". It's literally a choice.

Right now in this moment, you can choose to focus on feeling happy, or not. It's merely a matter of what you decide to place your attention upon. Do you choose to put your attention on what's going wrong or on what's going right?

Learn to Choose instead of React

One of the wonderful things about the human mind is that we have the power to choose our thoughts. If you don't like the way you feel, you can choose to think about something else. In fact, that's basic advice you probably heard from your parents as a child when you were upset about something -- "think about something else".

Every day, all day long, you are confronted with circumstances for which you have the ability to choose a response. And that choice is grounded in thoughts that either feel good or don't. If you're like most people, instead of consciously choosing, you're reacting instead. A reaction is an impulse; it's a conditioned response rather than a conscious choice.

Keep Practising

Feeling happy is something you can begin to do in any moment by simply choosing a better feeling thought. However, that's not to say that it's easy. If it were, most of us would be happy rather than unhappy most of the time.

Once you understand that you have the ability to choose to feel better -- to feel happier -- it merely becomes a matter of building the habit. And the wonderful thing about life is you have the opportunity to practice choosing the happier thought moment by moment throughout your day.

Realilze that every aspect of your life is ultimately about the decisions you choose to make. For example, if you don't like where you live, why do you live there? Is it because it's where you happened to be born or perhaps it's simply where your parents chose to live?

If you don't like where you live, make the decision to move. You don't even have to have moved yet, but just knowing that you've made the mental decision to move will allow you to feel better and start to think about where you'd like to move, when you'd like to move, etc. You'll already be thinking happier feeling thoughts.

The foundation of happiness is understanding that it's a choice. It's a choice you get to make over an over again all day long. And as you get better at making that choice through practice, a funny thing starts to happen: you start living a happier life moment by moment, day by day.

Are you ready to learn more about how to master the choice of happiness and life fulfillment? Sign up for our acclaimed free eCourse here: Life Happiness eCourse

Author's Bio: 

Warren Wojnowski is an avid student of personal growth and self improvement who has operated his own successful home business since 2005. He is a respected writer, teacher and Intrinsic Coach® who is very willing to share what he's learned (or still learning), what's working, and what isn't. Warren says "If you have an aspect of your life in which you feel stuck, whether in your life or your business, I can help you get back on track and start living the life you want".