All too often, we get caught up in chasing this elusive thing called success, thinking that when we reach this end objective, all of our problems will melt away and we will be overwhelmingly happy and satisfied with our lot in life. In an effort to achieve success, we may set up a series of well-defined goals, each of which can be thought of as a rung on the ladder. We climb up this ladder, step by step, thinking that when we reach the top and ring that bell, everything will be filled with bliss.
You’ve probably heard the ancient mantra that life is about the journey and not the destination. I came across the video below, which was posted at Postcards from the Funny Farm, and it illustrates this mantra all too well. Going through school and rising in our career aspirations, we will oftentimes chase money for its own sake, thinking that when we have X number of dollar saved, we will be happy. There’s always that prize dangling just out of reach.
In order to earn that cash, buy that home, or save up for that retirement, we can work long hours at jobs that may not be the most satisfying things in the world. You may be left wondering if you have to choose between happiness and success. In striving to achieve this success, you may be sacrificing a certain level of happiness. And you may be missing out on life along the way.
Sometimes, we forget why we live life in the first place. I know it sounds cliche, but sometimes you just need to stop and smell the roses. Chasing your dreams is well and good (impossible is nothing), but you need to make sure that you are actually experiencing life along the way. You have to make sure that you find time to sing, to dance, to laugh, and to smile. All we have in this world is the “now” and if you always have your eyes on what is yet to come, you may miss out on what is happening in the “now”, in the present.
Enjoy the video. The words come from Alan Watts, and the animation was produced by Matt Stone and Trey Parker of South Park fame.