People are encouraged to have dreams. Inherent in this is the pressure to be our best selves but not as defined by ourselves but by external parties. Unfortunately, this pursuit of the presently unattained – whether it be of a career, romantic partner etc – is the root of expectations and desires, which will invariably lead to disappointment and despair!
Desire itself may be ‘evil’ as Buddha has intimated, as it is the primary reason why there is pain and suffering in our lives. Think about it. So many of us live a life of regret and self-loathing, purely due to the inability to match up to our (or society’s) unrealistic expectations. Then, of course, we make the even bigger mistake of comparing our lives to others, duly compounded with the advent of social media.
Don’t get me wrong. I am not saying that you should not plan for the basic necessities needed to live but chasing the unattainable is something totally different. But this principle – planning for the future – should only be applied to be barest minimum of matters we exercise a modicum of control over — like finances.
Thus, live life in the present, a day at a time. Learn how to be content with all that you have. In other words, count your blessings. Let life surprise you by having rainbows chase you instead. People and circumstances are out of your control, enjoy them while you can but being fully aware that in an instant, the good things in life can turn against you.
If and when they do, have the resilience to face these difficult people and circumstances with patience and a belief that things will still work out in the end. Not in a perfect way, probably but close enough for us to accept and continue in contentment.
… still there’s more …