I CAN ONLY MAINTAIN MY HAPPINESS BY CHOOSING WHAT IS RELEVANT TO ME | David Antia
The most astonishing thing I have realised over time is that people don't progressively become happier as their status in life increases.Let's take instances in this white knuckle ride.
Think of yourself being in a job that pays you 40,000Naira in a month. You have got needs to meet and wants to fulfil. Then you are afraid that the job isn't paying enough . What happen? Your worries lead you to become sad ,unhappy and unfulfilled. Assuming that on the eve of the day after work while you sit in your couch drinking a sad sweet coffee, an old friend calls you to announce a new job offer that pays 70,000Naira.. The question I want to raise here is; Does this new pay have what it takes to make you happy for a lifetime?
While I allow you to chew over that, let us consider yet another instance. When we contest for a position (maybe political) or a prize and eventually wins. Does the outcome keep us at the state of perpetual happiness?
OK, how about the losers of elections and contests, does the outcome of these events make them unhappy for a lifetime?
Now let me introduce the logic of the set point; we adapt to good and bad things. We adapt to good things as much as we adapt to bad things.
You may tell yourself, if I win that prize, if I drive in that car, if I get that great job,I will be happy forever. No that is not so!. Those experience are wonderful at the beginning and then we get used to it.. Who else experience this habituation?
I can say here that happiness does not exist outside us. Our happiness doesn't increase too..
Let's say you loss your job or maybe your girlfriend just cheat on you,or let's consider that you are heart broken or your your love one just died and then suddenly there is a mind boggling question that poop up in your mind. Oh! How am I going to survive this?
Calm down a bit, bad events don't often affect as much of your life as you think they will.You simply get use to them. Yeah! That is the habituation I am talking about
We often think that we will become happier when we get a new position but this is not true. The sagacious H.L Mencken once wrote somewhere in his book that a wealthy man is one who earns 100Dollars more than his wife's sister's husband. We are hierarchical creatures and we are exquisitely sensitive to where we stand relative to other people. We think we earn more than others and so we are happy than them. We think that we drive in Ferrari and so we are more happy than our grandparents who use bicycle to farm in the village..
There is a substance of balance and that is 'contentment' . It harmonize the material and the immaterial. Our properties and the state of our mind.. Learn to be contented even as you strive to be your better self. Contentment is not complacency.
Now there is again something very interesting!
Terrible things have happened to people and they still look back and say Oh! That was the best thing in my life.
Imagine an old man who once suffered from hemangioblastomas (brain tumor).. This is not a good experience at all, but the old man will always be found telling his stories with so much happiness. In fact ,the memory from the experience form part of what makes him happy.
So you see? It is not so much of what happen to you that determine how happy you are ,it is how you perceive those events. Shakespeare once said that there is nothing neither good or bad ,but our thinking made it so.
I say to you; happiness is not consist in the substance or circumstance of things or events we achieve or experience. Happiness is a lifestyle and a natural wealth.
We all have a psychological immune system ,a mechanism that makes us a normal high functioning non-depressed people. A mechanism that makes us seek out the bright side of things.
People ask me why I am always smiling and happy. It is because I chose what is relevant to me .
Now! Chose what is relevant to you and you can be able to maintain your happiness