Fall in love with your life
How do you measure your happiness in your life? Often we might take a step back, look at our life and think its good. Then maybe you see a car driving down the road that has a higher price sticker than yours and it pulls into the neighborhood that you can’t even enter without a giving a formal interview to the security guard. You then may think to yourself, “Guess my life’s not so great.” Or perhaps you wake up one day and discover that your partner did take out the trash like you asked him to and you think to yourself, “What a great partner.” Then you have lunch with a girlfriend and she shows you the new bracelet her husband gave her that was on a tray of prepared breakfast that he served her in bed. Suddenly the trash seems insignificant. Is it in our human nature to constantly compare ourselves to others? Or if we are taught to be competitive, can we be taught to be humble?
I had the wonderful opportunity to visit the Potter’s House a few years ago. Reverend T.D. Jakes was talking about people complaining about their house not being big enough or their car breaking down. Then he said, “Meanwhile, the guy behind you doesn’t have a house or a car.” Often it takes us looking at the misfortune of others to remind us to be thankful for what we do have. But how can we learn to be thankful everyday? How can we escape the messages that society want to ingrain in our minds to be a certain way and possess a certain lifestyle? After all, when was the last time you saw a television advertisement for a 1983 Oldsmobile with a bent fender and horrible paint job? Or a vacation advertisement with a family driving to a State Park, camping in a tent, and spending only $20? The brand of cars we drive, size of our house, and luxurious vacation destinations are all how society deems we should measure our happiness. If you achieve these things, a luxurious life, all anxiety and stress will dissolve. Really? Is that what happens when you try to keep up with the Jones’?
Driving down Main Street, I passed a church who always puts insightful sayings on their billboard out front. “Fall in love with people, not things.” After all, when a child smiles at you doesn’t your heart melt? Your house can’t anger you, but your partner can. A car can’t evoke fear, but the person driving next to you can. People are the foundation for every emotion we have. Our relationships with them help shape who we are and give us happiness. Shoulders to cry on, hugs, and kisses are all only things you can get from having relationships with others. Stop comparing your life to that of the person sitting next to you. For better or worse, for richer or poorer, fall in love with your life. Its the only one you have.