You long for a sense of well-being. Who doesn’t?
You long to reach a state of peace and contentment in which God is in His heaven and all is right with the world.
A quest for that state is fairly common. It is so closely associated with a state of happiness that it is all but indistinguishable from it. While some of us do thrive on adrenaline rushes and on the edge living, those are temporary highs. For a large body of human beings, a state of serenity; an aspect of predictability and control and a large helping of contentment is exactly what the doctor ordered.
Yet, these are not easily come by in a world driven chaotic by the randomness of chance. Are we to abandon this quest forever? Is it hopeless to dream of order, contentment and peace?
It is certainly futile to hope that some stray happenstance would not come frolicking along and upset your painstakingly arranged apple-cart. It will. In fact, just when you’ve got everything down pat and have just slumped into your hammock with a tall glass of orange juice at hand tinkling merrily with ice, that you can expect the imps to come along and start uprooting not only your pretty flower shrubs but the very trees on which you’ve slung your hammock. It is annoying, but true.
You are forced to the conclusion that a permanent state of peace and well-being will probably will not be possible to create. Adapting quickly to what isn’t possible and in an admirable spirit of desisting to cry over spilt milk dreams, you look for what best you can do to salvage the little you can from the wreck.
And you find it.
You realize that the ONE thing that fills you with a sense of well-being is when you are able to do the things that are most important (not urgent) to you. When you are able to prioritize and put first things first, you create a feeling of joy and contentment for yourself- even if it is for the nonce.
In fact, if you consistently make time for doing everything that is vitally important to you, you find that you are a lot more stable and centered. You don’t get knocked off balance as easily; you also return to a state of equanimity sooner when you come unstuck.
There is a big difference between being centered and being self-centered.
~ Lolly Daskal
The eternal skeptic in you takes a jaundiced view of this admirable thought, however. Typical, of course.
“Bah! It couldn’t be so simple!” It whispers insidiously in your ear.
“But it IS!” you say.
“Oh yeah?” it sneers. “How come you aren’t content and full to the brim with a sense of well-being then?”
“That’s because I let other, less important, URGENT stuff muscle out the things which are more important to me”, you confess shamefacedly. “I let pressures and deadlines railroad my priorities. Everything that feeds my soul…reading a book, playing the violin, listening to the waves as they wash ashore, losing myself in the magic of a sunrise, spending time with my loved ones… are things relegated to the Never Land called SomeDay.
Things which matter most must never be at the mercy of things which matter least.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
“I postpone connecting with those who are most important to me; I assume that they would understand- endlessly. Moreover, where are they going? I have plenty of time to make it up to them, I console myself. Let me do this one thing, let me wrap up this project, let me get these pesky lose ends all tied up… then I’ll surely take time out and devote it exclusively to my loved ones. Promise!
Your days are numbered. Use them to throw open the windows of your soul to the sun. If you do not, the sun will soon set, and you with it.
~ Marcus Aurelius
“I welsh on the promises I make to myself- because it is the easiest thing in the world. No one can accost me and point an accusing finger at me; no one knows what promises I made to myself in the privacy of my soul. They’d never know, I didn’t say a word to them! What I forget is that they may not know… but they do wonder whether they have a place in my super busy life of not. It doesn’t seem to them that I do- and who can blame them?
“I keep brooding over the past and agonizing about the future to such an extent that I don’t notice I am standing in a valley of fragrant flowers bursting forth in an enchanting riot of colors, right at this moment. I don’t get out of my own head and into the world often enough. My life is lived in retrospect… I remember the fragrance and beauty of the flowers next week, when I am sitting in my office inundated with stupid deadlines. Then I kick myself for being such a hopeless moron! And I do it again the next time.”
The most important thing in life is knowing the most important things in life.
~ David F. Jakielo
“My, you’re stupid”, the skeptic in you says. “You let the less important things hold important things to ransom! Don’t you know, you fool, that you don’t have all that much time? Things which are dumped into SomeDay are usually never retrieved. Before you know it, you’ll be on your death bed kicking yourself all the way to your personal hell! I really would start putting first things first while there is still time, if I were you!”
And you pull up your socks to do just that.
How do you give yourself a Sense of Well-Being?