Is this all life is – Get up, go to work, come home, go to bed and do it all over again the next day? It can be quite depressing to think that we could be spending a large portion of our adult life doing exactly that.
I have been examining and reflecting on this for the past several years. In this post are my findings thus far on what does NOT satisfy:
- Material things – cars, vacations, houses or even your bank account will never satisfy. I have made a reasonable income in my career and with every promotion and ladder climbing move I have thought if only I could make $× more then things would be good…. but it isn’t. Somehow expenses and desires catch up to the next income bracket and I found myself in the same net financial position than before the increase.
- Power, status and title – this too I have chased after. I start pining for the next title almost as soon as I get into the current position. This next title will really give me the autonomy I need, or will allow me to demonstrate my capabilities to my fullest extent. Trust me that this only drives more demands on your time both in and out of work hours.
- People pleasing – by making other people happy, I can be satisfied. I was adamant that I was not a people pleaser because I was never part of clique or followed trends etc. but I recently became fully aware of how much of a people pleaser I am in other ways. Unfortunately when you spend all your time meeting other people’s needs, there is rarely any time or energy left for meeting your own needs.
What does not satisfy when we find it, was not the thing we were desiring.C.S. Lewis
Over the past year of personal transformation I have discovered that it is the simplest things that satisfy:
- Being outside in the mountains, hills, valleys and smelling the fresh air and noticing the skies, the plants, the wild animals
- That first cup of coffee in the morning.
- Solitude and meditation
- Watching the ‘snowglobe’ type snow falling from the comfort of the indoors or if the weather is not too cold, to walk in it.
Most of these things that bring satisfaction are simple and cost almost nothing. If you are in a similar situation of not finding satisfaction from the usual things, try this – carry a journal or you could use your cell phone to capture any moments (even the brief seconds) where you felt the sense of wanting the moment to last forever or having a sense of peace in your soul…I used to be a person who chased adrenaline – I still like adrenaline, but I realize that my contentment is not going to be a result of doing the high adrenaline activities…it is in the stillness that I find contentment.
At some point, you gotta let go, and sit still, and allow contentment to come to you.Elizabeth Gilbert – Eat, Pray, Love
This change in what I get satisfaction from did not happen overnight. It was a process of slowing down and noticing the moments that I felt joy and then expanding those moments from seconds to minutes. I don’t need to chase after these things, they are just there waiting for me to enjoy them when they come.
We need much less than we think we need.Maya Angelou
Have you considered what satisfies you?
Are you chasing after something that will likely never satisfy?
Do you want to find REAL satisfaction?