You don’t actually need a great deal of positive stimulation to be happy. There is peace and fulfilment in silence and quiet dedication. But what about hard work? Where does that fit in? Well, it’s true that stimulating work doesn’t feel like work. But many of us are stuck in unstimulating jobs that simply tire us out. That leads us to the ‘hamster wheel’ feeling that I myself experience – an endless cycle of earning and spending money, with positive stimulation as the only relief. So…what is the solution? How do we reconcile stimulation with happiness and financial security?
My answer would be that the solution is different for everyone. This is because what you value personally and the places from which you derive the most stimulation vary from person to person. For example, someone that derives the most positive stimulation from family would be comfortable with forgoing a super successful career with a large salary. However, someone that’s addicted to success and overcoming obstacles and challenges may do well in a high-powered job.
For successful entrepreneurs to write books about their journeys is a bit misguided – or at least the readers might be – because what the writer is doing is describing a very unique set of wants and needs, and offering it to readers as the ‘successful’ foundation. In reality, it was only successful for that particular person in that situation at that point in time. The only benefit from this kind of book would come from offering examples of challenges along with effective solutions. To say, “I want to be like so and so” is doing a disservice to oneself. That person could have wildly different priorities in life. They might have arrived at the same destination, but their ‘life pie’ (if you divide priorities into a pie chart) could be very different. So when you see people in the position that you aspire to hold one day, it’s worth getting to know them and learning about their life pie to see if it matches yours. I guess that’s why we tend to connect with people who share the same attitude to life – because their priorities match ours. Their life pies are more or less similar. It’s why searching for mentors and friends with similar goals is more important than looking up to people in higher positions with potentially different experiences and priorities. We often unwittingly spend our lives looking for people with matching pies, in our friendships and romantic relationships. Bringing your life pie into your consciousness can set you up for wonderful things.