Holy shit it’s been a long time since I wrote here. I’ve never felt this busy before. Anyway I don’t know why I’m starting this with a sidenote but here it is.
Now, I see how this title might upset people. But just read my thoughts and hopefully it will help you to understand why you’ve been tricked and how you can become un-tricked.
I am not going to pretend I know others experiences so I will start with this: I feel as if, because of personal experience, (in North American society at least) we are raised to believe that the ultimate goal of life is happiness. Sound familiar? Well, it should. Who doesn’t want happiness?
But here’s the thing(s):
Happiness is different for every single person. Happiness is a text from your crush, an ice cream cone on a hot day, a dog wagging it’s tail at you. Or at least that’s what happiness is for me, and many more things. Everyone’s version of happiness is different. So how can we strive for a life of happiness when everyone’s happiness is personal? We must recognize that our moments of happiness are exactly that: our moments. So if we try and live by other peoples definitions of “happiness”, we won’t understand why we’re not happy.
Also, and this is the big one: happiness is temporary. It’s just a fact of life. Nothing is permanent, especially happiness. That’s why we must learn to enjoy these moments as they pass through, but let them pass. Just like gas (hah, that rhymed– okay, dumb joke over). If we try and hold onto them too long, we’ll be holding onto a ghost, and only make ourselves more unhappy in the process. We need to learn to enjoy the happiness in the moment, and then let it be.
And this is why I believe that the ultimate personal goal should not be happiness, but contentment. This, for me, means accepting rather than expecting. Letting ourselves experience all the little moments of life, and being okay with everything that comes our way; the good days, the bad days, the alright days, the little moments both of happiness and despair. All of these things are a natural and normal part of life. If we try and resist what life throws at us, we are living in denial. Therefore, if we try and force ourselves to live a life of only happiness, we are lying to ourselves.
So, with all that being said, I’ll leave you with a small peace of advice that you can listen to or not: breathe, accept, and learn to be content.