Once in a while, I’ll find myself consulting online self-help articles in my bouts of unhappiness and uncertainty. The epiphany that follows my research always seems to go one of two ways:
“Oh my goodness, I’ve been an idiot. I am not chasing my dream nearly as hard as I should be. I’m sitting here watching TV or messing around on my phone when I didn’t do anything to deserve that time at all. I should have been going non-stop at my dream this whole time. If I had been doing that all along, who knows where I’d be now… I’ve gotta get started!”
“Oh my goodness, I’ve been an idiot. My constant striving towards my future has made me completely unable to see the joy and love that has been right in front of me this whole time. True happiness comes from gratitude and living in the moment. I already have everything I need. I’m going to start making the most of every day and enjoying the little moments instead of making myself sick about my future.”
I’ve always considered “Follow Your Dreams” and “Live in the Moment” pieces of advice that were important to me, but it wasn’t until last night that I fully realized they contradict one another.
You can’t run head first into your future while also cherishing the present.
However, we need both of these ideas. I really do believe that happiness lives in gratitude and helping others and living in the moment, but how would we move forward and make the most out of what we are if we don’t have some kind of grand idea for our future?
So what do we do?
We’ve got to find a balance. Unfortunately, I don’t think this is something we can read about and find the answer to. I believe this balance is going to be different for each individual person.
All of our lives are so varied with our own sets of challenges and triumphs… how could two simple adages sum all of us up. Of course it’s going to be much more complicated than that.
So through trial and error, let’s try to find that in-between line for our lives, at least to some level of consistency.
Here’s to finding the balance,