Life Lessons:
Richard London


*Are you happy at the moment?

Yes, because in addition to other things, I have a lovely wife, two beautiful children, and a wonderful daughter in law.

*If you could go back and say anything to your 16-year-old self now – what would it be?

“Things are going to be tough at times, but you’ll get through them.” Little did I know then that at age 19 I would be in a life changing automobile accident that would put me in and out of hospitals for ten months. Later in life I’d survive cancer and then be diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease.

*What’s the most important thing you’ve learned this year?

I’ve learned the importance of patience. I’ve had to face the fact that several of my personal and financial goals just won’t happen on my lifetime, and that’s OK.

*What do you most want to achieve in the next 12 months?

I’m looking forward to spending more quality time with my life partner, my wife. We’ll be celebrating our 30th wedding anniversary, and both hope to retire in the next five years. I figure now’s the time to really start enjoying each other.

*What’s your secret to happiness?

Finding something to be thankful for every day. I’ve seen too many people focus on the negative things in their lives.

*What one ritual or practice keeps you grounded?

I feel it’s my mission in life to somehow benefit every person I meet, even if it’s just giving them a smile when we meet to cheer up their day. I find that treating other people with respect increases my own feeling of happiness.

*What’s your biggest regret?

I wanted to serve my country in the military. In my senior year of high school I enlisted in the Navy. I was scheduled to go on active duty as soon as I graduated high school. Then in April, two months before graduating, I found out that I failed the Navy physical. I was devastated.

*What’s the most important lesson you’ve taught your kid(s)?

No matter how bad things seem today all problems are temporary.

*What bad habit would you most like to change about yourself?

I tend to be impatient when speaking with others. I need to allow them to do or say things in their own way and not press them to, “Get to the point.”

*Aside from motherhood/fatherhood and marriage what are you most proud of in your life?

At age 46, with undiagnosed Parkinson’s disease affecting my balance and endurance, I earned a black belt in Kempo Karate.

*When were you happiest?

The summer between high school and college. I had no obligations and was working outdoors with a close friend in a job that was stress free.

*What ten words best describe you?

Caring, Empathetic, Logical, Detail oriented, Active, Confident, Honest, Proud, Self-assured, Generous.


Richard London is a person with Parkinson’s, host of the Internet talk show Health Chat with Richard London, author (A Handbook for Life and A Handbook for Happiness), and motivational speaker. He speaks across the US and Canada sharing secrets with people with facing health challenges and their caregivers on how to enjoy every day. He is happily married to his wife of 29 years, and has two adult children. In addition to his website, you can find Richard on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.