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Chelsea Schmoll Period 8 October 14, 2008 SAT Essay: In today’s society, depression medications and therapists contribute to many people’s happiness. Stress, work-overload, and self-consciousness tend to contribute to the despondency of many individuals throughout the United States; however, in many cases, if the individuals would pause and view the beauty of the world around them, they could live a pleasant, stress-free life. Happiness and fulfillment in life do not occur merely by accident; rather, one must choose to be happy and work to maintain their goal. Impatience tends to compel individuals to choose the least demanding approach to achieve their goals; Insolence causes most set high expectations and then crumble in defeat when their expectations are not met. Yet, to achieve genuine happiness, one must not take the most straightforward approach to solving problems. Even in times of failure and heartache, one must be resilient in tough times and continue to work toward their goals of contentment. In the novel Siddhartha, Siddhartha works to achieve happiness and Nirvana throughout his life. Through tough times of fasting and turmoil, he still notices the gifts he has been given and continues to fight through his hardships. Temptations, such as gambling and drinking, sometimes get the best of him; however, he realizes that these insignificant actions that some believe help achieve happiness do not satisfy him. By listening to his elders and following his heart, he finds true happiness in nature and the river. Today, people still have to work to achieve happiness. Hollywood movies occasionally depict this thirst for happiness and the hardships of achieving fulfillment in life. In the Pursuit of Happiness, Will Smith is at the lowest point in his life. His career has proven to be a failure, his wife has left him, and he somehow has to find a way to provide for his son. Throughout all the stress of fatherhood and failure however, he still manages to work as hard as he possibly can to achieve happiness. Through a difficult internship, he finally manages to become employed in a high paying job. By pursuing happiness and not surrendering to the pressures of society, he finally fulfills his goal of achieving happiness for himself as well as his son.


Abraham Lincoln once said, “Most people are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.� Although many in America do not want to acknowledge this fact, it holds true in every aspect of life. The rich and poor of the world cannot achieve happiness with a pessimistic outlook on life. To achieve genuine happiness and fulfillment in life, one must have an optimistic attitude and never give into the pressures of stress and anxiety.


achieving happiness