The older I get the more convinced I am that true happiness, motivation and enjoyment in life comes from having an optimal balance between self improvement, introspection, and learning on the one side countered by a willingness to enjoy the moment for what it is…"smell the roses" as they say.
Lean too far either way, your life balance is skewed and things get a little crazy.
On the one hand, we've all noticed those people that seem addicted to personal development – a dependancy nearly as harmful to the spirit as drugs are to the mind and body. Without their daily dose of motivation, philosophy or praise they are sunk and can't seem to function on their own.
But there are those equally unbalanced on the other side. People who live in fear, have goals and objectives they do not fundamentally believe in, lead destructive, excessive lives of quiet desparation because they do not take the time to get to know what really makes them happy or what is preventing them from living more in line with their purpose.
Could you lead a life where you just let life happen to you?
Where you get up in the morning, eat whatever you want, take a calm bath, read a book, be nice to those around you, go to bed and do it all over again the next day?
If only it were that easy…
Yet what would have happened in our life if we lived this life of passive contentment?
Would we have learned how to walk? Would we have learned how to play music (a true gift I was able to learn), how to paint, how to socialize with other people….
Waking up and simply "living life" or "existing" may sound great for a day (heck it sounds great for a few weeks!) but how long would it take for us to get bored and uhappy?
Humans need to learn, be challenged, live the rollercoaster of ups and downs, be active and yes, meet our fundamental needs of fitting into society, to be loved and accepted and to alleviate our fears (the 3 causes that lead people to become philisophical and look for meaning outside of their lives)
So, having a healthy balance of learning, improving ourselves, meditation along with reserved times in our life where we sit back and just experience life, live it without thought and just exist turns out to be a winning combination for improving happiness, fulfillment and being more productive overall.
What is your experience?