I have been thinking a lot this week about contentment and boredom. It seems to me that there is a very fine line between the two. One minute, it seems fabulous that I have time to relax and do nothing. The next minute, I wonder: Is this it? Is this what my life has come down to? Just killing time?
Same activity. Two different mindsets.
During my daily meditation sessions using the Headspace app, I’ve been learning to observe my thoughts and emotions without being overwhelmed by them. I feel more grounded for the rest of the day once I have touched base with my calm inner core. I feel less overwhelmed when I have observed my thoughts for 10 minutes without engaging in them. It helps me to recognise the space between where I wish I was, and where I am; this gap is the cause of great stress for me.
One motto I live by is: “Do not compare yourself to others, or you will be left vain or bitter”. I really am not a competitive person at all. So it is in a spirit of compassion, that I look to other peoples’ stories to learn from, but also to help me to develop the right goals.
This week the reassuring / informative stories came in the form of:
- Real estate ads. My house sucks. I have sooo much IKEA furniture. But then I look at some of the ads for houses worth 3 or 4 or 20 million dollars, and they are so ugly. Seriously ugly.
- I was reading this story in the paper today about a super wealthy family – the kids each make $24 million a year in interest alone – and the dad reckoned he spent his life in court fighting battles with people who wanted his money. He never read to his kids at night. He had about 4 marriages. It was sad.
- Also this story in the NYT is a good reminder of how crazy the super wealthy can get.
- A cheesy quote always helps:
“Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence.
Talent will not;
nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent.
Genius will not;
unrewarded genius is almost a proverb.
Education will not;
the world is full of educated derelicts.
Persistence and determination are omnipotent.
The slogan “press on” has solved and always will solve
the problems of the human race.”
I also loved this thread on Reddit that has some really inspiring, life rules including:
- Get outside every day. Get enough Vitamin D.
- Make sure you sleep well. Develop good sleep habits.
- Get enough Omega 3.
- Set some goals that you are passionate about.
- If you have physical health, basic food, clothing and shelter — you are ALREADY much further ahead than many countless millions upon millions of others who are currently struggling in this world.
- Begin. If you fail, change your name to Finnegan and begin again.
My goals have to include working enough but not too much. Having time for people I love. Not getting into debt.