Originally written in 2013, this is a message I felt bears repeating.
For some time now, I've been striving to make being centered and happy, moment to moment, one of my top priorities. As a result of doing this, I've learned that it's not necessary to spend long periods of time, like I used to do, in emotional agitation. Rather, it is possible to limit self-created suffering, and to spend more time in a pleasant state of mind.
Now you may be thinking that what I'm saying is nonsense, that dark moods come and we can't help them, that things go wrong and it's natural, perhaps even right, to be upset over them. That's one way of looking at life that's fairly popular these days, and it's not true.
Although it is true that emotions come, it is also true that, when things go wrong and we get unhappy, we don't have to remain miserable. We can learn to let go of unhappiness and return to a centered, pleasant state of mind, and we can learn to do this faster and faster.
I'm certainly no master at this. Even so, I'm spending less time making myself miserable than when I began. As I continue to practice, the positive effect seems to be cumulative.
So the choice of whether to spend our moments in peace or mental torment is ours. Yoga provides invaluable methods to smooth and even transform our emotional habits. I also highly recommend reading psychologist Richard D. Carson's wonderful book, Taming Your Gremlin.