Self-help people and people in general tend to say it over and over again as if they've discovered the secret to a good life: you control your emotions, you make the life you want. And of course this is true. It's so true and obvious one might even overlook it on a regular basis.
But is this true and obvious only when things are going well? Or do you actually practice this idea when circumstances are less than optimal - the very time you need this idea the most?
Perhaps you're sick and can't work and this bugs you to no end. Is there something you can do when sick? Can you make some use of yourself? Who knows, maybe you're sick because you haven't recovered enough, and now you're forced to do it.
Perhaps you've had an accident or a close call and now, all you can think about is how afraid you are. If you can't remove the fear, can you accept it as a learning experience? Or can you grow, progress, become a person who aspires to live without fear?
Perhaps the obstacle is the way. Perhaps it's a beautiful day to be alive, regardless of the circumstances.
Listen to music you wouldn't admit liking. Read your favorite comic books, even if they're juvenile. Play a board game. Make a sweater for your teddy bear.
You can do all of this, regardless of circumstances, should you so choose.