What do you think your life would be like if you only chased after what you really, truly wanted?
Instead of what you think you should want? Let’s imagine this (maybe you’ve felt this way before)….
You’re looking at pictures and updates from your friends, seeing what they did this weekend –
- Sitting around a fireplace laughing
- Sipping tropical drinks on the beach
- Cooking in their fancy kitchen
- Climbing mountains
And you think to yourself – “I want to do that”
But do you really?
Or is there something else in the pictures you really want?
When You Want What “They” Have
I met with a friend recently who said she went hiking after being inspired by my pictures….
And she was miserable
You know why?…..
Because she didn’t want to hike
She thought she did…but that’s not what she was after.
What Was She Really Chasing
When she saw pictures of me hiking – happy, tired, accomplished – she thought she wanted to hike.
She saw me climbing over rocks, standing at the summit…
But then when she was in the same situations – she hadn’t enjoyed it at all.
Because, hiking is not what she was actually seeing in the pictures.
What she was seeing in my face was something that goes much deeper than hiking – and in the end, has very little to do with hiking at all.
What she really saw was my enjoying myself and satisfied with my life – and that is what she really wanted.
She wanted to feel the way I feel when I hike…
And when she didn’t get that feeling I get, she didn’t enjoy it.
I love to hike.
When I spend a day out hiking I feel alive, I lose track of time – and there is no place I would rather be than right where I am at that moment
But not everyone feels that way.
The (Often Failed) Pursuit of Happiness
Some people like to watch movies, cook, dance, ride horses or paint.
You may or may not like any of these things
So chasing happiness by doing what has worked for others does not guarantee that you will like it
Don’t chase after something just because you see someone else has it – and imagine that because they have it, you must have it too.
If something they are doing is aligned with their life – but not aligned with yours – you are bound to be disappointed.
You have to do what’s right for you – for me that’s hiking, speaking, running, playing guitar, creating great software.
But do not waste your time chasing something because you think it will bring you the happiness it brought other people.
So the next time you see people on TV drinking beer and laughing watching football, ask yourself…
Do I need beer? Do I need to watch football?
Or what is it that I really want – that will bring me the same happiness?
Are You Doing What Matters to You – Or “Floating”
If you aren’t sure what to do with your life, if you are perhaps “floating” through each day, not sure what comes next, there are two things I want you to know:
First that’s more common than you think, I see it all the time
And second: that’s also a problem, because it often means you are throwing away weeks and months of your life, spinning your wheels for nothing in particular.
Time is your most valuable resource – and once it’s gone, it is gone forever.
That’s why at every moment you must live your life to your fullest because there is no one-size-fits-all “the” fullest.
How would it feel doing things, knowing that your life is going in the best direction for you?
You can feel that way. Setting a course for your life, whether it’s for a few years or just the next few weeks, is covered in intense depth in The Action Solution. I call it “Your Compass.”
It is almost impossible to overstate how important finding your compass is to living a great life, a life that matters – because if you work hard towards something that doesn’t matter to you, then you do a disservice to your goals that do matter.
By always chasing what others are chasing, you’ll always be living a “Wanting” life – a life where you want this, you want that – and then when you get it, it does not satisfy you.
On the flip side – when you begin each day with a sense of purpose and knowing that what you are doing today is the precise right thing for you – everything you accomplish satisfies you.
Once you start to live with the feeling that each day and every action you take matters, not only will you be more productive – but you’ll feel great as you actually get things that matter to you in your life, and have more joy and happiness in the journey.
The difference between living a life where you feel every day matters, versus one where you watch the days go by will turn you into a different person – happy, fulfilled, content and successful.
[Ed Note: Sid Savara is widely regarded as one of the top personal development trainers and bloggers in the world. His unique experiment and analysis driven approach to personal development has led to a wide audience and dedicated following across the globe. Sid has been cited and mentioned on CBS, in CNN Money and Fortune. Click here to follow Sid’s blog.]