The most splendid achievement of all is the constant striving to surpass yourself and to be worthy of your own approval. This is how happiness blooms.
So don’t wait for someone to bring you roses; plant your own garden and decorate your own soul with ideas and passions that bring you joy. You do not exist to impress the world; you exist to live your life in a way that makes you and your loved ones smile.
Stay true to your path, stay positive, and someday you will catch yourself smiling about…
1. Memories of working on a life passion.
Passion is the key, and it’s worth making sacrifices for. It’s the secret ingredient that has kept me going through some of the most painful times of my life. Because at some point, especially when the going gets tough, you have to wonder what you’re doing and why.
Over the years, I’ve questioned myself and given myself a thousand little reasons to keep working on this site, but it always comes back to where it started. It comes down to my core passion to explore life’s challenges and write about them.
What distinguishes many of us who are actively pursuing our dreams from those of us on the couch is that some of us have learned the hard way – perhaps through a severe loss – that life is short, and that we must capitalize on the opportunities each day gives us, on the raw potential our minds and bodies are capable of, and on every ounce of willpower we can muster to make our journeys worthwhile. Read The $100 Startup.
2. The little moments.
True wealth is the ability to experience each moment of life to the fullest.
The subtle things are often the most powerful, but sometimes we get so busy that we don’t pay attention to them. So my challenge to you is this: Open your eyes. Wake up. Be attentive. Acknowledge each wonderful gift you have. See today as another day to enjoy the sights, sounds, smells, and sensations life has to offer.
Bottom line: Enjoy the little things, because one day you may look back and discover they were the big things.
3. The happiness you helped create.
Attitudes are catchy. Whether they’re positive or negative, they’re rubbing off on you and those around you.
So be positive. Let your intentions bleed with goodness – embodied in positive thoughts, cheerful words, and unselfish deeds – and the world will be to you a bright and happy place in which to work, play, and serve the greater good. Read The How of Happiness.
4. Relationships that weathered the storms with you.
No relationship is all sunshine, but two people can share one umbrella and survive the storm together.
In fact, the best relationships are not always the best because they have been consistently the happiest; sometimes they are that way because they have survived and strengthened through unhappy times.
5. Feeling beautiful on the inside.
As you get older, what you look like on the outside becomes less and less of an issue, and who you are on the inside becomes the primary point of interest. You eventually realize that beauty has almost nothing to do with looks; it’s who you are as a person, how you make others feel about themselves, and most importantly, how you feel about yourself.
6. Knowing that you did your best.
Don’t be afraid of death; be afraid of a life unlived. You don’t have to live forever; you just have to live right now while you have a chance. Keep in mind that life doesn’t always give you second chances, so when an opportunity arises, take it.
And never give up on a dream just because of the time that’s required to accomplish it. The time will pass anyway. Do what you need to do so that, at the very least, you can look back on your life someday and say, “I gave it my best shot.” Read The Last Lecture.
7. The peace in your heart.
Life is short. So focus on what matters to YOU and let go of what does not.
Remember, it is the strength of your conviction that determines your level of success, not the number of people who agree with every little thing you do. In the end, you will know that you’ve made the right decisions and followed the proper path when there is peace in your heart.
Photo by: Kees de Vos