One downfall to humankind is our desire to always want more. And if not more, then we are searching for something better. Although the new car we bough six months ago was great at the time, perhaps you are now wishing you had held out for the newer model, or a cheaper price, or something a little bigger. It seems that we are never happy with what we have in life, and instead, are on a continuous search for something more.
This, sadly, holds true in many different aspects of life. Individuals suffering with Anorexic or Bulimia want to just lose five more pounds. Gamblers want to have just one more chance at breaking even. Alcoholics want one more drink. Smokers need one more pack before they quit. It goes on and on. We are always looking for the excuse to not have to deal with the present situation, and instead, look to the future as a fix all. Surely the future will bring happiness. Wont it?
We are all guilty of this behavior. Either wanting more than we have, or putting things off until our situation is better. Or both. Credit Card debts can grow out of control, because we plan on paying it off when we make more money. We hold off getting married until the time is right, possibly ruining the relationship in the process. What if the right time never comes? What if what you are searching for never happens?
Not being happy with the life you have will only lead to depression, stress, and a life of anxiety. Our desire to keep up with others, whether it’s monetary, physical, material or intellectual, will only add stress and unhappiness to a life that could otherwise be quite fulfilling. Instead of wishing for a larger home, a better paying job, or a thinner body, it would be more helpful for us to think of how fortunate we are to be exactly where we are in life. Rather than focusing on what has held us back, we could be thankful for what brought us to the point we are at this very moment.
The best advice that can be given on how to overcome wanting, is to realize that nothing material really matters. When you die, will anyone care about how much stuff you had? Will your loved ones care about those five pounds you never lost? Will your friends remember you for driving the best car, having the newest cell phone, or the biggest office? No. None of those things matter. Material possessions are just that. Material. What brings true happiness are the relationships we hold with others, the memories we make, and the laughter we brought while we were here.
By no means am I saying to not hope for more, or lose the drive to achieve more in life. Not at all! It is our dreams and our plans for the future that give us a reason to work hard, and gives us a goal to strive for. What I am suggesting, however, is to be happy with what you have in the meantime. Look to the things you want as something extra and the journey to those things as a voyage. You will live a happier life overall and will relieve a tremendous amount of pressure off yourself.