There are very different ways of interpreting that question.
I was rereading the book Your Money Or Your Life recently, and two of its passages brought me back to my mid-twenties:
"Other people’s expectations don’t make you buy stuff. TV does not make you buy stuff. Your thoughts make you buy stuff. Watch those suckers. They’re dangerous to your pocketbook—and to a lot more." - p. 194.
"'Quality of life' often goes down as “'standard of living' goes up. There is a peak to the Fulfillment Curve—spending more after you’ve reached the peak will bring less fulfillment." - p. 300.
As snowflake clusters fall softly to the ground this morning, I watch, coffee in hand. I appreciate the spectacle and wonder: "How many winters do I have in my future?”
I say it not to be morose but to ensure I cherish this one. This day. This snowfall. This moment. I want to soak in what this experience offers me. I've written before that memories are my most prized possessions, but I think the ability to stop and spend time in the now—doing what feels right in the moment—as often as possible is even more precious.
“Why bother?” is a question that saddens me every time I hear it. It’s usually in response to another person sharing their efforts in learning a process, task or about a subject that interests them.
The question is rooted in a belief that has permeated our society like a cancer. That belief is that the only reason we should do something is in order to reach a desired outcome, something "worthwhile". And, that for some reason the process we use to get there is irrelevant, the only relevant measure being whether or not it can be achieved efficiently.
By thinking this way, WE MISS THE WHOLE POINT OF LEARNING!
There’s a lot of talk about happiness these days. The happiness industry is booming with seminars, books, courses and all sorts of work and leisure “systems” to help us all be happier.
I’ve come to understand that happiness, for me at least, comes from learning about myself and what makes me tick (some might call it “doing the work”). It also comes from ensuring I have the freedom to make time and listen to what it is that I really want to do and be in all aspects of life: relationships, professional pursuits, personal experiences.
I'm ignorant, and I'm OK with that. But it doesn't mean that I don't try to be a little less so every day.
Our knowledge, skills, abilities and experience are tested all day long, with every decision we make and in every conversation we have with others. Well, they are tested, unless we tend to do the same things every day/week/month, thereby exposing ourselves to the same type of information and the same types of conversations over and over again with the same people (like the movie Groundhog Day, which I’ve written about here).
A hair stylist once told me “You’re not a high-maintenance woman, are you?”. Others have been more polite, with statements such as “You’d be best with something that’s easy to style and maintain.” and others less so: “No. I’m not going to do that type of colour on you because you won’t maintain it.”
OUCH! Suffice it to say that most people would not peg me as someone who invests a lot in her looks, unless I absolutely have to. Truth is, if I don’t have a corporate gig to go to or a theatre production to prep for, you’ll find me in cargo pants, a t-shirt and a zip-up hoodie as opposed to more professional-looking options. Yup, that’s how I roll 90+% of the time, especially now that I work my magic at home.