Overtime for people that read and seek information to improve themselves, you may have come across the saying that achieving our goals does not give us lasting happiness.
Working towards and achieving goals is the pursuit of happiness, so they say. As you may have experienced, eventually, the euphoria wears off, and then we’re back where we were before. What will give you happiness is learning to deal confidently with difficult situations, feelings, and emotions from moment to moment.
Focus on your feelings and not goals.
That’s not to say we shouldn’t have goals. Like you, I’m a coach, and goals are part of life as you aim to accomplish. But what’s absolutely critical to our happiness is not goals, but how we deal with life’s inevitable problems.
Try this: Imagine for a moment that you are a millionaire. You can have anything you want. And while some goals may take a while to achieve, you’d have the money and influence to get the best experts in the world to teach or help you and be able to keep trying without fear of financial consequences. You can pay people to do anything you don’t like to do from housekeeping, tax returns, picking up the dry cleaning, someone to help you exercise and keep you on track.
You will have your pick of the litter when it comes to a romantic partner and cool friends and the best TVs, cars, homes, holidays, and every ‘toy’ you ever wanted. Perhaps you’re even a philanthropist, making a difference in the world(good for you).
And yet, we all know how that can end. Think about all the celebrities who are unhappy, depressed, drug, sex, or alcohol addicts, and more. Yes, you may get it…we can not buy true love or friendship. But now I want you to imagine that you are amazingly fortunate. You have your millionaire lifestyle(money in abundance), you’re making a difference, and you have a partner, family, and friends who truly love you. Wonderful!
But wait…and then all of a sudden your loving dog gets run over…(wow). Stay with me for a minute. The point I’m making is that even with all the money we ever wanted and a loving family and friends, we can still get cancer, our loved ones can get hit by a bus, our house can get burgled. We still get food poisoning, stub our toes, get stung by wasps, and sun-burned.
I like this quote…“The problem is not that there are problems. The problem is expecting otherwise and thinking that having problems is a problem.” Theodore Rubin
You see, the thing we all like to forget is that however, ‘wonderful’ life is, life still happens. And yet, we’re led to believe by society, films, advertising, and sometimes even the wonderful self-help industry that we’re a part of(me included) that it’s achieving our goals (or money) that will make us happy. And yes, achieving our goals gives us a burst of happiness for a moment, and then what.
But what helps us find happiness in life is learning to handle life’s inevitable difficulties and the resulting painful feelings and emotions.
Of course, there are many other factors to happiness including, being grateful for what we have, accepting and loving who we are, having enough challenge to stretch us without stressing us out, people we love and trust who love us, helping and being of service to others and more. But we can have all of this, and things will still happen that give us emotional and physical pain.
Because pain and discomfort are a certainty in this physical life, we know we can deal with anything life throws at us when we come from the spirit; there’s nothing left to fear. And when we’re no longer afraid, we can relax and enjoy life more, take more risks, succeed more, and worry less. In short, we’re happier knowing that our spirit leads us, and we no longer let the body desires and pains rule us.
So, work towards your goals and enjoy the temporary happiness you feel when you achieve them(celebrate). But if you want to be happier for life, remember that confidently dealing with our painful feelings and emotions, rejection, pain, disappointment, betrayal from a spiritual point of reference is where it is at.
In fact, why not add this as a goal? I know it is one of mine. Because if you learn this concept and apply it, you won’t just be pursuing happiness; you will be happy in your life, moment to moment in the present, not in your future(which has not arrived yet) or the past(which is gone).
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To your success
Coach Lionel Sanabria