Why Today Could Be the Best Day of Your Life

My home has a lovely little painting placed prominently by the front door. It is one of the first things I see as I set out each day. The image shows nine simple words: “Today could be the best day of your life.”

This message was put to canvas by my wife, and it reminds us daily of a simple, universal truth.

I read it every day, as I have for years. And on each day, it has proven true. Every day has the potential to be the best day of your life so far. Of course, not all will turn out to be so, but if you open yourself to the possibility, then a great many of them will surprise you.

word painting - today could be the best day of your life

Of the days that painting has stood on display, many have been the best of my life.

Some are the big landmark days you may be picturing – On one of them, I got married; on another, I graduated college. On at least one of those days, I went to Disneyland. There was one when I started a dream job and another when I walked away from it. 

But they don’t all have to be the big showstoppers. For example, on one of the best days of my life, I, a grown adult, made a large living room blanket fort from which to eat snacks and watch cartoons with my best friend. And on one of them, I played (and decisively lost) a game of Risk. Another involved following a scavenger hunt I had put together for someone I care about.

A day with a Disneyland-level amount of awesomeness can come in many shapes and sizes. You could have one today, tomorrow, and the next day. And do note that I’m not saying ‘or.’

Happiness is a Skill

One thing that often gets lost in pursuing happiness is that happiness is itself a pursuit. Feeling happy is a skill to practice, not something to have. That’s why rainbows symbolize happiness, and pots of gold do not. It’s not a destination. It’s a journey.

Happy people take their mental health seriously. They accept life’s more difficult moments, and they don’t let those moments define them. They choose to be positive and create their own happiness.

Happy days, then, are a matter of our ability to create and embrace positivity. They are not just lying there waiting for us to stumble into them. 

Extraordinary events will come, and so will terrible ones. Some are just easier to enjoy than others. You can’t control that. What you can control is how you choose to experience them.

You can have a bad day at Disneyland and a good day at the funeral of someone you love and miss dearly. I’d know; I’ve done both.

Now, I don’t mean that you should force yourself to “feel good” at every moment. You don’t have to put pressure on any situation to be something that it is not. 

The point is that there are no limits to how your day must feel. Each day has the potential to be one of your best yet, but it doesn’t get that chance if you aren’t open to it.

Joy is what happens when a positive attitude overlaps with pleasant circumstances. In other words, it’s when preparation meets opportunity. Will you be prepared when the opportunity comes for the next best day of your life?

There’s No Limit

The movie Office Space, on the surface, is a fun, goofy workplace comedy. But underneath the humor, it is an empowering story about personal choice, building self-respect, and finding freedom in the face of the existential terror of an unfulfilling life.

I’ve always loved one scene in which the protagonist tells his therapist, “Ever since I started working, every single day of my life has been worse than the day before it. So that means that every single day that you see me, that’s on the worst day of my life.”

His therapist responds, “wow, that’s messed up.”

From the first time I saw the movie, I’ve been fascinated with this scene for one reason: What he’s describing, however unlikely, is entirely possible. The math checks out. 

If you start on the worst day of your life, and each subsequent day is worse than that, even if only slightly, then every day would technically be the worst day of your life up to that point. His observation is valid.

And its inverse is just as valid.

If yesterday was the best day of your life, it doesn’t mean that you’ve peaked. Today can be the best day of your life all over again. Great days don’t prevent you from having more great days. Contrariwise, the more you practice happiness, the more often you’ll be able to experience the best day of your life.

There is no limit to how often you can live one of the best days of your life. And there is also no ceiling to how high those days can rise. So keep yourself open to positivity, and you’ll find yourself living the best day of your life time and time again.

Be Ready for the Next Best Day of Your Life

The painting hanging by my front door reminds me every day, as it bears repeating: “Today could be the best day of your life.”

We cannot know when we start our day, what will happen or how it will affect us. Inevitably some moments will be unforgettable, and others will flat-out suck. We have a choice at each of these moments and all the space in between. First, we must decide whether to lift ourselves higher or pull ourselves down. 

The only thing we know for sure is that every day has the possibility for greatness. But, we’re far more likely to find that greatness when we practice the skill of positivity and stay open to the unique happiness that today could bring.

Remember this potential, and happiness will find its way to you far more than you’d believe. So give today a fair chance, and it just might be the best day of your life.

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Hey, I’m Sam. I created Smarter and Harder to explore big ideas, both old and new, about building a better life. My mission is to evolve the conversation about personal growth and have fun doing it.

12 thoughts on “Why Today Could Be the Best Day of Your Life”

  1. This is so true, pressure is put on us to be more positive and happy all the time that I believe it makes us more unhappy. “Why are you upset, you should be grateful about ‘X, Y, Z'”. We need to accept and be in touch with our emotions and practice different techniques during our day to promote our positivity and happiness 🤗
    Great read thank you for sharing!

    • Yeah, I totally agree. There is definitely a fine line between driving positivity, and trying to force yourself (or others) to ignore things that are painful or difficult. I think it’s all about the direction you’re trying to move, rather than where you are at this exact moment.

  2. It’s a lovely thought that every day could be the best day of your life. I guess it’s kind of similar to “Live every day as if it’s your last”. I love finding joy in the little things in life. A day doesn’t need to include a big life changing event to be an amazing day. Sometimes it can just involve quietly spending time with people you love.

    • Yeah, totally! The big, landmark days, like big trips and events, we can usually see coming. But there are so many awesome opportunities in between those for wonderful days, and a lot of them can come as a surprise, but you’re more likely to find them if you stay open to the possibility 🙂

  3. It’s funny, how a simple phrase or concept can be the leverage needed to change your outlook. Like your living room fort, I also find way more happiness and joy in simplicty and purity of childish moments. Great read!

    • That’s great! I think a lot of people would be happier if they allowed themselves to be just a little bit more of a kid sometimes 🙂

  4. I like that idea I will try it. I have a sign for my daily workouts so that I don’t slack off. I will get working on positive message one.

    • that’s awesome, I love how much a simple message can really internalize when you pass by it and see it every day!

  5. Great to reread this! I do like to be reminded that today could be the best day of your life. Nice too to be reminded that you can’t have too many ‘best days’. Looking at the plants growing outside my door as I go to work makes each day start off the Best! Thanks for the read

    • I appreciate your continuing interest! I tend to feel the same way with all kinds of self-help content – the first time I read it I’ll get all excited about the new idea, but I still need to keep coming back to it to help it stick.

  6. so glad I found this site. it really speaks to me and I love the idea that changing my life depends on me . no blame game, no comparisons and just making me my best me. thank you

    • Thank you so much, Linda, I’m glad you’re here! Small, intentional steps and positive changes is what we’re all about. I hope to hear more soon about where your journey takes you!


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