Goals And Aftermath
The aftermath need not happen at all if you enjoy the now and realize that in your journey of life it is your sole goal to keep yourself happy and motivated every day
People spend their whole life setting goals, and it is the achievement of the goals that they believe will make them happy. This, unfortunately, is the largest trap in the world and we are programmed first by our families and then by the education system and then by society to believe beyond a doubt on this absolute false notion.
For children, we reinforce the idea of "finish your food .... and then you'll be happy", "finish your homework... and then you'll be happy", "achieve fabulous grades... and then you'll be happy"
The child is then left waiting for moments of success and never really enjoying life at all.
At school, most learn that they cannot be happy unless they CONFORM to the system. Some lessons that they learn at home are reinforced at school such as classmates who accomplish stars at sports or at certain subjects are happy. What I find extremely sad is that it reinforces the notion that unless achievement is the norm the human will possess no value and will do completely disposable by all.
There has been very little space in the child's life where they can feel themselves present and mindful in the moment as everything is tied in to a future goal.
This never-ending saga makes human beings limit their wholesome experience of their universe.
I have a colleague who works with me and unfortunately like many others have been through the rigmarole of enticing the perfect performance for perfect happiness. Her goals of getting the perfect job, the perfect man, the perfect house, the perfect dog with the perfect fence put her in an elaborate trap.
But what happens after you get there?
Are you prepared for the aftermath?
What sort of preparation have you undergone in order to fully appreciate what you have?
At Mind Over Image, we have super achievers walking in with stress etched all over their body and mind. They are equipped to achieve their dream but unequipped to deal with their everyday stress.
This is not about lowering your expectation but about putting that on a vision board mapping the journey and then enjoying the journey. Enjoying the moments is important, or else like most of our clients you look back and wonder where life went while they were busy chasing a dream.
The other problem that comes with chasing a dream and pegging your happiness on the attainment of that dream is that the object of the dream becomes the vessel of hope and happiness. Grades, cars, jobs, lovers, these cannot give you happiness over long periods; these are at moments of happiness. Spending your whole life chasing a moment is not the ideal way to live.
I hear a lot of men and women express to me that they are not happy because they are not married. I often tell them to ask their married friends if they are happy.
This kind of belief system crashes the operating system as nobody or thing can actually bring you any kind of happiness. Happiness is truly in the living of the life and not in the destination.
However, if you have already spent your life in the system of achievement based satisfaction then I suppose the only mantra that will help you is to lower your expectations to risk being disappointed. This helps us in redefining the input and output reward that is imagined by you as the reality is vastly different.
I've had folks going through withdrawal symptoms in the aftermath of a great love story amounting to a beautiful wedding and hoping for unimaginable bliss. But the reality doesn't hold up to the perceived aspirations of a continuous high!
Same with the dream job, after landing the role you coveted for so long, what if it's not what you wanted after all?
So do we just give up on our dreams?
No, we look at our dreams without the rose coloured glasses. We look at that 'whats' with the 'ifs'.
In the words of Eckhart Tolle
Unease, anxiety, tension, stress, worry - all forms of fear - are caused by too much future, and not enough presence.
The aftermath need not happen at all if you enjoy the now and realize that in your journey of life it is your sole goal to keep yourself happy and motivated every day. So use that vision board, mark out your journey and keep yourself rooted and mindful in your day.
C'est la vie and Carpe diem.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house. Unless otherwise noted, the author is writing in his/her personal capacity. They are not intended and should not be thought to represent official ideas, attitudes, or policies of any agency or institution.