1. Is wanting what you don't have making you miserable?
2. Will you ever have everything you want?
3. Will you ever not be miserable?
4. Is fixing #1 the key to happiness?
The above was one of my least popular Facebook post, and I knew it would be. We live in an age of conspicuous consumption that has people reeling in debt chasing happiness by satisfying their wants, without ever stopping to think about why they want the stuff in the first place.
I used to rush out on Sunday mornings to grab the Sunday paper filled with the “sale” flyers of local retail stores. Inevitably, after flipping through the pages, there was/were something(s) that I just had to have. The same thing would happen when I received my monthly copy of the photography magazine to which I had subscribed. There would be this new something or other that I just had to have.
Then one day, it occurred to me that in both cases before I began flipping pages, I hadn't wanted anything, I had been satisfied with what I had, until I let the advertisers have access to my mind. So, I stopped looking at “sale” fliers, or photographic magazines, buying books about the theory and practice to inform myself instead. (You pay for books up front not on the back end with purchases). I started limiting my television watching, and tried to occupy myself during commercials... Result, I don't want stuff, don't feel any urgency about getting stuff, and as a result live well within my means, with very little debt and much less stress... which also means I can afford to Do Stuff, which genuinely adds to happiness, as it seems experiences actually become part of who we are... and which I believe I will take with me to eternity... unlike a new sofa.