I'm about to turn another year wiser, so clearly I am feeling philosophical in my old age.
There's a saying that to understand how you got here, you need only to look at your decisions. I've learned that isn't entirely accurate, as so much of what plays into our lives is also privilege and circumstance. However, the sentiment is true. What's done is done, and our consequences of today have been brought about by actions in the past.
So much of life is just being present and stepping up. I volunteered to take things on at work, leading to promotions and raises. I bravely moved across the country, and I ended up finding my niche and happy home. But so much of that stemmed from being in the right place at the right time and being willing to take on something new and make changes. You never know where life will take you. It all brought me here.
A couple months ago, my neighbor and I happened to both be out at the same time grabbing the empty trash can. This doesn't happen often, and in fact, we hardly ever see them. Lo and behold, we ended up talking about how we have the worst houses on the block. They're the oldest and the smallest by far. It's so funny to think about, when we live in one of the most expensive areas and we are surrounded by wealth.
The secret to having more is wanting less. The less you want, the less you pine over, the more you're able to appreciate what you actually have and the more mental space you have to focus on the things that matter to you. The key to happiness is being thankful for the good things we do have, and it comes from a place of gratitude.
When you look at new things to bring into your life, ask yourself the following:
- Will this add value to my life in the form of happiness or wealth?
- Will this allow me to connect to my family?
- Will it spark a positive association?
Always maximize your spending for personal happiness.
All this isn't to say that you shouldn't strive for more if that's what your goal is. Working toward goals is fulfilling, and there is no limit to the success we can all achieve.