Shawn Maxam shares the key to happy living.
What we call happiness in the strictest sense comes from the (preferably sudden) satisfaction of needs which have been dammed up to a high degree.
The secret to living a happy is not steeped in the profound but rather grounded in the mundane.
We think happiness is based around events. The fairy-tale wedding, the luxurious baby shower, the extravagant vacation, purchasing a home and the birth of a child.
Real life is based around stability. On routine. Having a banal existence is a gift. The guarantee that even our simplest needs can be satisfied is often taken for granted. We complain when we have to choose between warm oatmeal or cold cereal for breakfast. It’s upsetting to us when a movie time is sold-out. We confuse happiness for satisfaction. We mistake yearning for unhappiness.
Exactness and immediacy are the primary culprits in perpetuating the myth of what we think a happy life should be. If we don’t have exactly what we want immediately then we become frustrated and agitated. The bigger the want the greater the frustration felt. We develop an uneasiness within ourselves forging a constant internal battle with feeling perfect even though we have no idea what perfection means or actually is.
How often have you acquired something you really wanted or desire to only feel wholly underwhelmed? Or to feel puzzled when some emotional work is needed to maintain your satisfaction with that need or desire. You really wanted a specific job but within several years you realize it will take work to continue to enjoy the profession. You wanted to be married but eventually realize it will take work for the marriage to be a solid and happy one.
Happiness is like the tides. Sometimes it is low and sometimes it’s high but it is always there. We are only taught to expect high tides of happiness. True happiness is staring at the waves and knowing they will be there, not worrying how big the waves will be or are.
We want our lives to be filled with hyperbole and superlative. Exciting, awesome, amazing, fantastic are a few of the words that come to mind. Those words can be appropriate descriptions of an experience but it’s nearly impossible for every second of life to live up to such lofty heights. I think internalizing one thought is the secret to happy living. To approach our lives not in search for a grand epiphany or life-altering experience but with the desire for certainty. For calm. For equilibrium.
A happy life should be like your every breath. Every moment should should your favorite because like each breath every moment of your life is equally important and matters.
Please share this with friends, enemies and temporary allies alike.
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Flickr image via rolfekolbe