The last 7 days have had me in the greatest adventures. I’ve slid down the greatest water slides, held a python, been kissed by a wolf and eaten grouper at a posh restaurant so close to little sea planes taking off on the aquamarine waters in Key Biscayne.
We’ve been celebrating my daughter’s 9th birthday and we decided not to hold back and to enjoy some of all that life has to offer. By doing so, I know she’s had the best celebration doing some of the things she loves most, as have I. Further still, these experiences have been deeply meaningful and significant to me.
This contrasts sharply with the challenges of people I have been seeing around me lately. I know several people who seem to have it all, but something inside them clouds it all, ruining the money, positions, partners or life they have.
The Indian Box
A wise friend told me that his visit to India clearly illustrated the true meaning of happiness to him. When he first arrived at the nice, modern airport and then was driven outside the airport, the poverty struck him. He saw box houses on the streets but was most surprised to see that the people there were happy. Yes, I know that you know that happiness can’t really be bought, but when you see someone with so little who is happier than you, and when you see a person who has great meaning in their lives even though they don’t have many things, it hits you at a deeper level.
While I don’t believe that you should trade in your car or home for a cardboard box or give all your personal belongings away, I do think you should increase the meaning in your life.
My husband, Kris, and I were watching Satisfaction, a show on the USA network. In the show the main characters are both having a wakeup call in life, just like some of my friends around me. She’s having a midlife crisis, which has driven her to an affair. My husband commented that midlife crisis affect women as much as men these days. Even in people who have it all, again like my friends.
In order for us to enjoy life, it must be meaningful to us. The question is, how do you tap into meaning? Because people in cardboard boxes sometimes tap in, but so do some people who own a lot more things, even though things like a loving relationship and a successful career are meant to bring meaning.
Meaning comes from connecting with or being with what is meaningful to you. People who take the time to ask themselves what they appreciate about themselves tap into meaning. Meditation is a time to be with yourself so intimately that you go deeper than words or thoughts and find something deeper that holds endless meaning for you. Also, simply knowing yourself well enough to know what is important to you and what you value about yourself, first and foremost, brings meaning.
To put it one last way that might drive this home, you don’t want to be like a zombie in the soul-less kind of way. The things in your life will hold more spiritual mojo and meaning when you fill them with your soul. Your soul is all about you. Empty means you’re not really home, meaning means your soul is making everything shine.
Be you by tapping into you and what’s real or important to you. Then you’ll tap into the fountain of youth of meaning, happiness and the riches of life – no matter what other things may or may not be in your life.
Happiness comes from within, where all that you are resides.