Pleasure in the process
What are you working towards? Owning your own house? Owning two houses? Getting promoted? Making partner? Having a six figure salary? Having a six pack? Maybe all of the above, but the real question is; when you get there will you be happy?
Most of us have goals we’re working towards which is no bad thing, I know I certainly do, in fact without them I would probably just be trying to complete Netflix… Where the danger lies is if you are relying on reaching those goals to make you happy or to finally feel complete. If you’re sacrificing your life now in the hope that when you finally reach a certain point it will have all been worth it, it most probably won’t. It took me a while to realise that there is no ‘ta da’ moment, there’s no point where you sit back and say ‘I’m done, completed it mate’. My only aim in the beginning was to be independent but once I could use a wheelchair I just wanted to be able to stand, once I stood I just wanted to walk, once walking I wanted to climb, and so on. The hedonic treadmill makes sure that we don’t settle, the need for progress is built in to us so that we keep evolving. It’s a very difficult urge to deny unless you have found enlightenment and seeing as most of us aren’t buddhist monks we should just embrace it. Embracing it has been an important process because it’s made me realise that goals are valuable, but only to drive progress. To be content we need to find pleasure in the journey because that’s where we live our entire lives.
Obviously we won’t enjoy everything we do and often we have to do some unenjoyable stuff to keep moving forward but if you’re sacrificing your happiness today in the hope of finding it further down the line then stop.
Do things that fulfil you now, take pleasure from the process because there is no destination.