Perhaps you view your life as perfect, or almost so. But for those who don’t (and that’s not a bad thing, we can enjoy our lives and still strive to reach particular goals and benchmarks) what holds us back? Fear, loss of security, limiting beliefs, lack of confidence?
I am one of the strivers and I’m pretty happy with my life. My days are relaxed and I challenge myself. I think to varying degrees, we all do. Sometimes it takes a life altering experience to catapult us, sometimes a less major – non stop irritation can do the trick. Whatever it is, or whatever we have, life is imperfect. So how exactly do we attain happiness? And is it sustainable?
It depends on how we define ‘happy’ and that definition can morph at different stages in life (to say nothing of different moments in a day!) As a teen, happy was fitting in, having friends for fun and sharing experiences, getting good grades and taking that next big step – college. In my 20’s, I was adventurous with careers and tried quite a few, following my passion and whatever worked for my lifestyle and personality. I picked up a Master’s Degree. I got married. Then came motherhood and opening a business. Then moving from Manhattan to the suburbs and buying a house. And another house. Then divorce. Tough years followed, but so did great ones. Is there any extended period of time you can think of that didn’t encompass multiple emotions? Perhaps even conflicting, multiple emotions? Is it just me?
In yesterday’s post I spoke of going on automatic pilot to free myself to handle some situations, which succeeded – but in so doing – the unintended consequence was disengaging from the moment. But maybe, with the very full plate I was carrying, those were necessary survival techniques.
Introspective as I am, I’m not big on spending time trying to change the past (which, by definition, is impossible). I’m just trying to understand it so I can behave differently in the present. Perhaps there is no perfect, but there is good enough. And if we are lucky, there are people and circumstances that make tomorrow worth today’s work. .