Two things have happened to me recently that really affected me a lot.

One event of course was the shocking killings of thirty two students and teachers at Virginia Tech in the United States.

The other thing that happened that affected me a lot this week was an accident that I witnessed very near to my house.

I was just coming back from a long car trip and feeling anxious to get home when I rounded the last corner on my way to my house. Half a block from my home, I found my way blocked by a lot of police cars and ambulances with flashing lights. I got out of my car to see what was happening.

What I saw really shocked me. There had obviously been a very high speed collision involving three vehicles, smashing all of them, and injuring some neighbors who live across the street from me.

Two trucks and a van were involved in this collision which happened at a very quiet intersection in a very quiet residential neighborhood. When I looked at where all the pieces of the trucks and van were scattered, I couldn't figure out what had happened, but it was obvious that somebody must have been going much too fast.

It turned out that my friend who lives next door to me just happened to be walking past this corner when the accident happened, and one of the trucks that was involved in the crash just missed hitting her by inches. She was too shaken to sleep for several days afterwards.

The good thing was that even though all the vehicles involved in this accident were very heavily damaged, through some miracle, nobody was very seriously hurt. The baby in the van survived only because he was in his car seat in the middle of the van, and not sitting on the side where a truck smashed into the side of the van.

Most of the people involved in this accident lived only a few hundred feet from where the site of the accident, and they missed an unexpected death by a matter of seconds and inches. Most of them were on their way home, almost home and almost safe.

When I was trying to decide what lessons there might be in these two very different, but very shocking events, eventually I felt like the real message for me was "choose to be happy now".

Now, you might think that it's a strange choice to think about happiness after a big mass murder and a big accident, but these events remind me that we make a big mistake if we keep thinking we have to postpone our happiness till something perfect happens.

None of us knows what's in store for us in the future, so if we ever want to be happy, we have to develop the habit of looking for happiness now, instead of postponing it to some future date that might never come.

Author's Bio: 

Royane Real is the author of many self help articles, books and reports available at her website. Discover many more life affirming self help articles at her new website at