Yesterday in my English class, my classmates, teacher, and I had a long discussion about our futures, our goals, and human nature in general. On the board my teacher drew a long line. He said to think of it as infinite, it continued forever with no beginning and no end. He split it in half and wrote good on one side, and evil on the other. He told us to think about what we had done or thought about that day since we had woken up that morning, and to try to place our actions and thoughts on the line. Many people recalled the moments when they woke up and groaned about getting up to get ready, or when they complained about all the homework that was due in first period. We concluded that as a human being it's easy to fall on the evil side, even if it's something small. Everyone seemed to agree that normal human emotions that most of us experience every day, like jealousy, laziness, cowardice, and negativity, all fell under the evil side. It got us to thinking about how we live our lives and why. Everyday when we wake up in the morning and we have to get ready, eat, sit in school for 8 hours, get home, work on homework, eat, and sleep, just to wake up and do it all over agin the next day. We repeat that process for years and then even longer for college. Then it's onto work and bills and it seems like the cycle never ends. But that is only if you think of it this way. Attitude is everything. Instead we must be grateful that we are able to wake up every morning, grateful that we are able to get an education, grateful that our parents have jobs where we can come home from school everyday and sleep on a bed under a roof. Grateful for the opportunities that are available to us. Grateful to be in a free country. Grateful to be living. So then we thought about what it is to live. There's a difference between living and surviving. Surviving is eating, drinking, and sleeping; it's simply getting by. It's repetitive and boring. Living is so much more. Living is believing and dreaming and flourishing. To live we must strive for greatness and happiness. You have to really want it. There are many ways to find happiness. Surround yourself with loved ones and friends and positivity. Find hobbies that you're passionate about. Smile and sing and dance. Give a compliment to a stranger. Appreciate yourself and your situation. Fall in love. Make something. Write and read and study and learn. Go outside more. Tell stories and listen to other's stories. Travel and meet new people. Contribute to your community. Set goals and don't stop until you've accomplished them. Live for yourself and your dreams and don't be afraid to stand out. Overcome your fears. Find your purpose and the meaning of your life. Understand your weaknesses and work to overcome them. And most importantly, follow your heart. My teacher really stressed the importance of personal drive and self governance. It is very easy to switch your "evil" habits into "good" ones with a little bit of self awareness. Doing so will help you live a happier and more fulfilling life. So get out there and radiate positivity and kindness to everyone you meet. Life is beautiful so cherish every second of it and have a great day, everyday.