All we want is to be happy. But we need to understand that if happiness is what we want, we will more often than not frequently be unhappy. It is a paradox that needs to be understood in our search for what we truly want.
In our search for happiness, we rely on outcomes, on people, on tangible material things. If we have something or someone in our life, we would finally be happy. It is a cause-and-effect situation that raises the bar every time we attain the object of our happiness. Perhaps, that is why happiness cannot be sustained. It is fleeting and temporary.
Joy Is Constant
Joy, on the other hand, is a different matter. It is constant and more fulfilling because we do not rely on a result or outcome to get the emotional feeling of joy. It is profound and rooted deeply in our psyche because we are all wired to be someone doing something we love to do.
Joy comes with "doing what we are fashioned to do no matter the outcome." Consequently, once you appreciate who you are and your talents, you decide on a calling and do that with all your heart. You have joy in your heart in the mere doing of your duty, of your calling.
Prioritize Who You Are
We all have our hills to climb. You and I have different definitions of success. But the important thing is no matter what our definition of it is. We need to prioritize our souls. We need to prioritize who we are as individuals. We must never compromise our values because we will regret being someone we are not.
Once we have defined what success is to us, we need to do the work to maintain it. Success could mean having a career, a family, friendships, good health, and relationships. It all depends on what you find meaningful and fulfilling. We need to pay attention to each of these and make adjustments, so we can keep all of them in good shape.
Know Who You Are
Too many options lead to waste and excess, which do not bring us joy. To know who we are, we need to know first who we are not. We cannot waste time on people, places, and things that are not good for us in the long run, who do not bring out the best in us. Eliminating waste and excess that keeps us from being and doing our best will give us more time and opportunity to be the good side of our nature as people.
The best and easiest way to feel successful is to be grateful. We take stock of the smallest and simplest things we have, of what is working, of what adds value to our life. We refrain from taking things for granted.
The logic in this grateful attitude is that being grateful creates more things to be grateful for. We cannot deny our failures. But nothing can be had from failures, except if we look at what we can improve on and what steps we can take to be better, so we can succeed next time.
Taking account of our experiences, our feelings, joys, and failures will lead us to more wisdom which we can use to understand why we are and why we do things in a certain, unique way. By studying our habits and routines, we become better at introspection and develop self-awareness. We understand our motives, strengths, and limitations.
Be At Peace With Yourself
Our values and our honesty with who we are will give us peace. No one will hold it against us if we fail to be true to no one but ourselves. No one will throw us a big party either. But the best thing we can have by being truthful with ourselves is our peace of mind, especially when we lie down at night to sleep. We all sleep alone.
There Are No Limits To What We Can Do
We need to remember that the approach is the destination. There are no finish lines. The target is to keep going. When we are in motion and having a great time doing what we are good at, we must never question our right to live at that moment. We become more aware of the process and refrain from being self-conscious. We are actively involved with our lives and the people and things in them. We do our best when there are no limits to what we can do except to always do better all the time.