Not how long, but how well you have lived is the main thing.
Kindred Spirit Quotes
This quote came up on my feed this morning and got me thinking…
There is a monumental difference between living and living well…
What does it mean to live well?
The answer to that question differs for everyone but I believe there to be one key element that is common across the globe as the single greatest contributor to a life that is well lived.
The person that is happy is the one that lives well…
It is so sad that so many of us are just not happy. So many of us are anxious and stressed and suffer from depression. There seems to be an endless quest for this ‘happiness’. People are constantly looking for this magical cocktail of things to do and see and buy and be to produce happiness. What if we stopped searching so feverishly to achieve happiness and just slowed down and looked around at our present place in life and became grateful for what is and allowed ourselves to be happy? What if we did that? Have you tried that?
It’s tough. I can attest. We watch others go and see and do and think that they are happy because they go and see and do. But, I have also recognized that many people that go and see and do come back from all of it not so happy. Once the high of going and doing and escaping and buying has faded, they are back to feeling like something is missing and then anxiety and/or regret and feelings of lack set in and the cycle continues until the next ‘cure-all’ adventure comes up. If you didn’t start out happy, ya ain’t coming back happy.
Happiness is not a checklist. A dream job, a fast car, a good home, world travel, even love, mean nothing at all if you have not yet found a way to feel full and content in your own mind and heart.
I guess what I’m getting at is that you need to create a life and mindset that allows you to be happy when you’re still. Consider the latest suicides of fashion mogul Kate Spade and world travelling foodie Anthony Bourdain. Would you ever have thought that these souls were unhappy? To the outsider, they had it all. How desperately unhappy were they in their stillness that they took their own lives as a way out? So so sad.
At the end of our line, it would be nice to look back over our lives and say that they were well lived. That whatever we did, wherever we went, whatever we explored was done in the spirit of happiness. That the choices we made contributed to our contentment and peace of mind and not to our stress level and disconnect from ourselves. Happiness is the foundation upon which every other thing you do is built on. If that fundamental foundation isn’t there, nothing you stack on top of it will hold.
I’m beginning to recognize that real happiness isn’t something large and looming on the horizon ahead but something small, numerous and already here. The smile of someone you love. A decent breakfast. The warm sunset. Your little everyday joys all lined up in a row.