The Persuit Of Happiness

Watching the movie “The Pursuit Of Happiness”. You know the one with Will Smith as Chris Gardner, alongside Jaden Smith as Christopher Gardner, his son both on and off screen. The one movie I have to admit where they both played an outstanding role together.

“The Pursuit Of Happiness”, hit our screens in 2006. I heard all the hype but it was only after I watched an episode of Oprah where Chris Gardner himself was a guest, enticed me to watch it. So tonight, as I watched this movie, and having seen it before, was very much still effected by the story. I remember very well that intensity of humbleness and gratefulness the first time I watched, and how nothing should be taken for granted…

So 14 years later, while flicking through the channels saw it was the 8pm movie for the night, and knew i had to watch it again. Once again without a doubt, this profound story had me as it did the first-time round, touching not only my heart but also reaching down, pulling from the depths of my soul. The intensity 1,000 times more than I ever felt.

That overwhelming thought of how this man could wake up each day, though when you watch you notice how little sleep he actually gets. How he starts and ends each day filled with motivation and the will to endure every day with insane determination to survive. For him or for his son, or for both of them… His survival mode dictated his every thought and every move and always with good intentions and honest heart, even at the worst of worst times.

If you haven’t seen this movie, I would urge you to immediately. Yes, it will pull on those heart strings, and hit you hard with a reality check. Go watch it.

So in a nutshell here is brief overview, though I know my summary of this movie will not do it any justice.

It’s a real-life tell all story, of a man Chris Gardner, who having lost everything and I mean everything. With the undying love for his son after his wife left, through determination, builds himself up by doing an internship as a stock broker for 6 months without earning 1 cent. That’s the pre-happy part of the movie, because before he got to that decision of being an intern and through those 6 months, it was gut wrenching hard.

While watching it you feel your heart reaching out in agony because like I said no one can endure that much… Yet he did because he had perseverance, Vision, determination and gumption.

Tears streaming down my face as i think to myself… How sick you feel at how we complain about our lives.. after watching such a movie.

We do, don’t we? I mean every little thing, just seems to bring on an emotion of unhappiness or irritation. Or we feel unsatisfied and disillusioned and expectations so high, even the things that once made us smile or appreciate, we simply oversee it and miss those little gifts.

I honestly don’t blame us feeling this way, not completely. I’m also not saying it’s ok to feel like this. I’m just saying, we unfortunately are living through dark times. Like that single brightly coloured flower growing out of the concrete jungle pavement. You can’t miss it, it’s there, in all its colourful abundance so why are we missing our little abundant moments, filled with colours that help us through our grey clouded minds?

… because we are pushing at full steam ahead and not stopping to take note. Moving too quickly to notice the little things in life.

Something to be said about Chris Gardner. His rock bottom hit rock bottom over and over and over again. He still showed positiveness, lived it and breathed it and so much so you can’t help feeling overwhelmed and exhausted for him. Not once did he show anyone how defeated he was almost feeling and not once did he complain or blame anyone for where he was in his life. In actual fact if you think about it, would he have been driven to be a stock broker, if he wasn’t in that desperate place of his life. The constant perseverance of taking every opportunity to convince Jay Twistle played by Brian Howe, the man driving the red sports car who was the man behind the motivation to become a stock broker. He just wanted that Interview, to show Jay Twistle never judge a book by its cover.

You see not only was Chris Gardner, motivated and a positive force to be reckoned with but was blessed with an above average IQ, which he knew but again very humble about it. Not only first in his classes at school but in everything he took part in or put his mind to. It was the Rubik’s Cube and ride in the taxi with Jay Twistle that convinced Twistle he was worth interviewing for that internship, to earn that type of money to drive his own red sports car.

Obviously it wasn’t about the sports car but he knew when he owned one it would mean he was set on his life and money would not be an issue.

Money has become our motivation and that’s not a good or bad thing. Generally bad, because money, whether we agree or not, is evil and motivates the wrong people to want money in the wrong way. However, it’s also good because we can use it to motivate us in a good way, to work hard, to persevere and to strive at being the best we can be.

It’s all we want in the end is to be the best we can be… We just have to find the good behind the evil. The perseverance, motivation and strength behind the judgement, criticism and negativity we face everyday.

Find that strength and nothing can stand in your way.

Chris Gardner


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