I’ve heard that “happiness” comes from what you do (Your job or career), or what you have (Your material possessions). If this line of thinking is true, then it could also be said that when you do not have that perfect job, woman, house, or a bank account overflowing with money, that you should be unhappy. Right?
Well, I was listening to a Tony Robbins CD not too long ago and he said something that struck a chord and has stayed with me ever since. He said that your unhappiness doesn’t come so much from what you don’t have, as it does from the difference between your self-image (The mental blueprint you have of yourself), and the person you want to be. I know this might sound like common sense, but let me explain. If you did not have aspirations to be some rich and famous person in life, or have some awesome career doing what you truly have a passion for, and you end up with exactly that (The not having of those things), then you will be totally content with who, what, and where you are. The trick is when you truly want to be, do, or have something greater than what you currently are, do, or have, this will cause you to feel that shame, guilt, sadness, or anger. This is why when setting goals, doing visualizations or affirmations, you should make sure that they are realistic. It goes back to the SMART method I spoke of in my blog on keeping New Year’s resolutions.
However, there could be some good in feeling that way, when you don’t add up to what it is that you know your worth. Those feelings of shame, remorse, guilt, or sadness could very well act as a catalyst to get your compass recalibrated and get you moving in the “right” direction. However, I would rather not have to go through that pain to be able to “see the light” and change my ways.
What you want to do is think long and hard about how you see yourself. Underneath all the hype and exaggerations that you sell yourself on a daily basis, is the real you. The Real You. This is the person that you cannot run from (although you may try), and is the person that you have to see every time you look in the mirror. Figure out who that person is and write it down if you have to. Writing it makes it more real to you. Then figure out who it is that you really want to be. What would truly make you happy in life? Whatever the gap is between the two is your margin or room for growth. That is where you should be focusing your time and energy.
Challenge yourself daily to close that gap. Move yourself closer and closer to the person that you dream of being, and farther away from that person or aspect of yourself that you wish to leave behind. If not now, when? If not you, who? It reminds me of something that an ex-coworker used to say a lot, “Everything you do (and I mean Everything) either gets you one step closer to or one step further away from your goal.” Which do you choose?
Bryan Keith Tresenriter