I had another sleepless night last night. It seems like no matter what I do the stress keeps creeping back in and preventing me from getting any real rest. I tried reading, playing some games on my Blackberry, I even took a stab at Soduku; but nothing seemed to quiet my mind. These thoughts about work, money and my future goals have me running on an edgy, stressed based energy- I can feel the exhaustion just beneath the surface and its making me behave in ways that are not me.
As I lay in bed this morning I asked myself: “Is this worth it? Is stressing myself out while I walk around like a zombie that snaps at insignificant things really worth “success” as my mind has defined it? And what is success anyway? Is it happiness, or is it accomplishments?” The more I examined it the more I saw the dysfunction with the way that I’ve been living and I know I am not the only one.
Life is tough; I’ll be the first to admit that. But the purpose of life is to be happy. I mean, when you look at it that’s what we’re all trying to achieve. But we get so mixed up in the drama that we lose touch with our purpose. We get so attached to the process of striving that we forget how to enjoy arriving.
Eventually we all encounter this truth. We will all realize that we don’t need to add anything to ourselves to be happy. In my own case it’s the simple things that bring me the most joy; my family, building things, or that first breath of cool, fresh air when you leave for work in the morning. Attaining my goals is fine, but using the present moment as a means to an end has done nothing but make me UNhappy, thus nullifying its purpose in the first place.
Starting today I’m going to make an honest attempt to focus on those things that make me happy. I’m going to let go of the rigid demands of my mind and live in the flow of life. Unfortunately, for those of us who love what they do, placing it behind lesser preferred priorities will be a real battle.
In the end we all must do what is best for ourselves, our family, and our business. If we go to bed at night with anything less than a smile on our face then we are not succeeding. So take inventory of those things that make YOU happy. Ask yourself what you do that is a misguided means to that end? Make conscious attempts to cut those things that stifle your joy, and focus on enjoying your life rather than constantly striving to make it “better.”
Is this the answer to a more stress free laissez faire lifestyle? Probably not. But, as time rolls on, I find myself increasingly concerned that if I don’t stop for a moment and assess myself, I will burn out.
Loving what you do for a living is one of life’s greatest achievements and sacrificing that with work-o-holic tendencies would be a terrible tragedy.