Here’s the thing about spending your life/energy/talents chasing things: the more you get, the more you want. They never fulfill their promise of happiness. It’s a pretty cruel ruse once you really think about it.
Get the car you’ve been dreaming of for years and after a few days, you’re already thinking about the next one. Move into your dream home or get your dream job and within a couple of weeks the attraction has faded and the sparkle has gone. It’s no longer exciting. Your attention moves on, to the next desire.
What life has taught me (and I’m certainly no guru and definitely don’t have all the answers)) is that things can never bring you a joy that lasts.
I want to be incredibly clear: there’s absolutely nothing wrong, in my mind, with having/collecting/wanting nice things. They make the climb to The Mountaintop more pleasant.
I guess what I’m trying to say is that perhaps the key for us is not to worship them. Not to get hooked by them. Not to be enslaved by all things material. Enjoy them. Just don’t get caught in the trap they often set.
So that begs the question: “Where does real and sustained joy/happiness/fulfillment come from?”
Here’s a quick list, based on my current level of understanding (big idea: we cannot see any higher than the level of our understanding; the more we understand, the more we will see…like scaling a mountain):
Where Does Real and Sustained Joy/Happiness/Fulfillment Come From?
• Spending your life in pursuits that realize your potential and awaken your talents (growing)
• Transcending our fears and letting go of limiting beliefs
• Achieving worthy goals and creating success on our own terms (rather than according to the definition of success of those around us)
• Rich and meaningful relationships
• Elevating in self-knowledge
• Adding value to others (from clients and co-workers to people in our communities)
• Making a positive difference and having an impact on the world around you
So yes, own things (it’s a very human hunger). Get the shiny objects of allure that call out for your attention. And once you own them – enjoy them. But don’t let them own you. Possess them. But don’t be possessed by them.
– From Little Black Book For Stunning Success By Robin Sharma