Here are 9 Ways to be Happier This Summer
Posted July 21, 2020.
Last Friday night we were driving through 9000 South to my brothers house for an outdoor movie night with the family, when all the sudden in a congested area of traffic, we heard a loud screeching crash. I quickly glanced in my rearview mirror and as if in slow motion, I saw the body of a grown man flung into an aerial spin off of his motorcycle and heard the crash and revving sound of his machine flying through the air.
It was scary to witness this horrifying event, and we were so close to being indirectly involved in the accident. It turns out a truck was making a left turn and T-boned the riders motorcycle, which shot him off his bike. As we pulled over and I jumped out to call 911, his body looked as if it were lifeless on the road. As we got closer his face was covered in blood, jaw dislocated and lying face down in a ton of pain.
Fortunately he was breathing and speaking OK. The group of us surrounding him continued to encourage him to lie as still as possible until the paramedic team arrived.
He was wearing a helmet up until impact, although it was now lying about 10 feet away from his body on the road. He also wore protective chest gear. This protection likely saved his life. He had several broken bones and will obviously need a lot of rehabilitative and facial work, but he survived as far as we know and was quickly cared for by the medical team.
Life is fragile. The most disturbing part was a nearby car with two women, unrelated to the biker, who were profanely yelling at the two men who hit the biker. Obviously they didn’t mean to cause an accident, and they clearly felt terrible about it. The drivers of the turning truck were in shock pacing back-and-forth. Fortunately one of the other women helping at the accident was encouraging to the men in the truck, repeating that it wasn’t their fault. It truly appeared to be an accent.
I’ve grown up riding both on off-road motorcycles and bicycles. You can never be too careful, because just one innocent mistake by someone not paying attention or someone at the wrong place at the wrong time can be life altering or even life ending.
The legendary UCLA Coach and teacher, John Wooden said:
"We seek happiness in the wrong places and in the wrong form. The primary cause of unhappiness is simply wanting too much, overemphasizing the material things. Happiness begins where selfishness ends."
In his fantastic book Wooden: a lifetime of observations and reflections on and off the court (one of my new favorite books by the way, if you haven’t read it is excellent advice for being a parent, a coach, a team member/employee, a teacher, or a leader), he describes 9 promises that will make you happier which include:
- Promise to talk about health, happiness, and prosperity as often as possible.
- Promise to make all your friends know there is something in them that is special and that you value.
- Promise to think only of the best, to work only for the best, and to expect only the best in yourself and others.
- Promise to be just as enthusiastic about the success of others as you are about your own.
- Promise to be so strong that nothing can disturb your peace of mind.
- Promise to forget the mistakes of the past and press on to greater achievements in the future.
- Promise to wear a cheerful appearance at all times and give every person you meet a smile.
- Promise to give so much time improving yourself that you have no time to criticize others.
- Promise to be too large for worry, too noble for anger, too strong for fear, and too happy to permit trouble to press on you.
I hope you have a wonderful week, and let this be a reminder to you that when you are out doing recreation or sports this summer, don’t forget to wear your helmets and mouthguards to keep your head and teeth safe, as well as to minimize concussion or injury in the case something does happen. Be prepared, but don’t live in fear. This was a great lesson and reminder for my family.
There’s a lot of good (sometimes disguised) in the world, and right now even though our lives feel in turmoil sometimes, we have a lot to be grateful for and a free country to live in.
Dr. Tyler Williams, D.D.S.
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