MORE ON HAPPIINESS
Things are beginning to settle down. I feel much calmer. The stress and anxiety, all the worry about the upcoming changes, leaving my job and starting to work for myself, feel less acute and now I am beginning to feel the excitement.
I still don’t really know how it is all going to work out but I realise that I don’t need to know. I don’t need to know in order to be happy now. The two do not have to be connected. In fact connection of success and happiness will lead most of us down the road of perpetual misery.
There is always something else to be achieved, to be owned, or to do.
Once I am successful, I will be happy. Once I have been promoted, I will be happy. Once I am healthier, I will be happy.
What about now?
There will be something in your life that can make you happy right now.
How about that you are alive! How about a beautiful sunset. Having friends, having a roof over your head, having a device on which you are reading this. Or something completely different, completely unique to you.
This reminds me of a talk I saw on YouTube by Vishen Lakhiani, founder of Mindvalley.
He speaks about the flow state, a state in which we are happy in the now yet have a vision for the future. He proposes that only having both at the same time can lead you to true success. All other states hold you back.
Having neither vision nor happiness leads to depression. Being happy in the now but having no vision for the future is ok, but it is not exciting, gives no true satisfaction or fulfilment. Lastly having a vision but being unhappy now just leads to stress, anxiety and frustration.
So the only way to have both is to disentangle them. Finding things every day that make you happy is a wonderful skill to have. Being grateful for the little things in life; those precious moments are what makes it worthwhile. Yet still having a big vision driving us forward, but not depending on the fulfillment of this vision for our happiness.
The only certainty in life is change. There is always motion, movement, development. Our Universe is expansive, it grows all of the time. We are a part of this Universe, so it stands to reason that we are also expansive and grow. And I do not mean our waistline when I talk about this…. but I talk about our minds, our consciousness, our awareness.
Most cells in our bodies continually regenerate. They die and new cells are born. Within 7 years the vast majority of the cells will have been replaced. Now how amazing is this? Within a mere 7 years we can grow a completely new body!
This is even true for brain cells. When I went to medical school we were taught that once brain cells die they do not grow back. New research disproves this and in certain parts of the brain new brain cells are born.
With every thought, with every intention, with every action, with every habit, with every emotion we set a course for our future. A trajectory taking us into a certain direction. Just take a moment to consider this.
Are you happy with this trajectory? Will you be satisfied when you arrive? If you can grow a completely new body in just 7 years I wonder what else can you achieve?
It is never too late to change course and even little changes will have a huge impact over time.
Of course I still feel the pang of anxiety and uncertainty. There will always be ups and downs. But I endeavour to spend some time every day to appreciate my life. Every moment is precious. And the dark times, the stressful times, the times of uncertainty and fear often bring growth which is only recognised much later on.