Life is a pretty wonderful journey – all we need to do is slow down and look around every once in a while to appreciate how good we have it. And while the demands of the daily routine can sometimes seem to weigh down, we have to remember that no minor worries should interfere with the good life we so choose to live.

The great ancient philosopher Plato once wrote, “Nothing in the affairs of men is worthy of great anxiety.”

No life is ever free from trouble, but no life is ever free from joy either. And oftentimes the secret to happiness is realizing that we have a choice to make, between fear and freedom.

There is an old Swedish proverb that goes “Worry often gives a small thing a big shadow.”

A lot of the time, what seems so important is really a small pile of beans compared to the things that are really important in life – family, friendship, and love.

As Ralph Waldo Emerson pointed out, “Most of the shadows of life are caused by standing in our own sunshine.”

Worry isn’t just the absence of happiness – it’s the very element blocking the warm and light things about life that help us connect with each other in the present moment.

Zen teacher Thich Nhat Hanh has a great saying for releasing tension and fear – “I vow to let go of all worries and anxiety in order to be light and free. “

Happiness is a promise we can make to ourselves every morning when we rise for the day. It is not something that happens to us; rather, it is something we choose to participate in.

“Worry does nothing but steal your joy and keep you very busy doing nothing.” (Unknown)

There is nothing worrying helps us to achieve – absolutely nothing! Far better to realize that life is a passing voyage, and to smile along the way…