I Can Be as Happy as I Want

by | Feb 12, 2019

“I Can Be as Happy as I Want”

For some, this phrase will be obvious, and for others, it might appear ‘Pollyannaish.’

Even if the phrase is obvious to you, do you really know what it means? I certainly didn’t. While I knew what the words meant, I didn’t understand the power they conveyed.


The first word, “I” is fundamental. One of the most central principles of the You Can Choose philosophy is that everything begins with you. You are central to your life, and starting with yourself is the first step to making any change or achieving any goal.


“I can …” is used in many ways to convey choice, possibility and a sense of empowerment. Can you envision yourself standing up, waving your hand and proudly stating “I can”? It feels fantastic. If you let that feeling in, it can permeate your whole being – giving you confidence and clarity.

I also use the phrase “I can,” to give myself permission. I’ve not always felt I deserve certain things in life. Growing up with a sense of inferiority and lack, I’ve often felt the need for validation and need for permission from outside authorities. Confidently stating, “I can,” empowers me with choice and I’m learning to embrace it.


With the addition of “be,” we add an element of becoming. The phrase then moves from a conceptual or intellectual exercise to doing something actionable.

Many of us have goals. We wish to achieve things in our life. During certain phases, we strive to accumulate things, while in other phases, we want to become more of who we want to be, perhaps becoming more mindful, more healthy, more accepting, more present. “I can be,” is all about transformation and stepping into who you are.

In Michelle Obama’s book, Becoming, she recognizes that life is all about becoming. No matter where you are, there is still more. Not that you must live for the future, but realize that if you are open, the journey is the fun part.


“Happy” comes next. I love this word. I can’t have too much happy. Happy is a word for what we frequently strive for in life and how we feel when we achieve it, even if it’s for a brief time.


The last part, “as I want,” puts the emphasis back on me. I get to choose, and I feel empowered. “Want” implies possibilities that are only limited by our imagination. To want is the most natural thing in the world to do. Our ability to want is automatic and natural. Each time we see something we don’t like or something we do like, we exercise our ability to want.


All together, “I can be as happy as I want” is immensely powerful. I sometimes repeat it throughout the day. When I find myself thinking negative thoughts, I gently tell myself that I have the choice right now to be and become as happy as I want. Doing so, settles my mind and helps me remember who I am.

You can change the word “happy” with other words that might work better for you. Other examples might include, “healthy”, “lovable”, “abundant”, or “relaxed”.

There is no limit as to what you can choose for yourself.

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