On Thursday morning, I noticed we had two papers outside our house. One, the daily newspaper; the other, a “paper” filled with Black Friday sale ads. The latter was much larger in volume than the first.
We always want more, want better, want something else that we don’t have. And, in some cases (like Black Friday), we will fight to our death to get it. This isn’t just true for our “stuff” though–we are not comfortable with who we are or what we look like. We say to ourselves, “If only….I could lose 10 pounds, my house were bigger, I were more outgoing, my kids were more self-sufficient, my husband would be more attentive, I could make more money, I could be a better student….THEN”….what? Real life could begin? Then,what? You would be happier?
Maybe. I can tell you that if you achieve even one of those things, you might be “happier”–but only temporarily. Then, you will find something else to fixate on that you want but don’t have. It’s the human way. But, contentment is not the same as happiness. Happiness is based on external circumstances, while contentment is based on your internal disposition. Focus on what you do have–whether it be your health, your apartment, that you have children, that you get to eat dinner each evening. By doing this, your internal state (the condition of your heart) will begin to transform. Try to learn contentment.