Today's article is about something I see all the time and it perplexes me. There are an awful lot of people today who do not know what they like. I am not talking about the chocolate versus vanilla debate, but rather what really makes them happy in life. Today I see a lot of people who have become so absorbed with impressing others that their actions are determined less by whether they actually enjoy doing something, but rather are determined by what others will think about it.
I have an individual in my life who bought himself a sporty second car, which meant that he and his wife now had 3 cars. He literally bought the car because he thought others would be impressed and thus would hopefully advance his social standing. Much to his chagrin nobody really cared and it turns out that he wasn’t completely happy with the car himself and he ended up getting rid of the car two years later after having spent a ton of money, which he did not recoup.
I hear and see stories like this all the time. People living their lives to impress others. The problem with this is that when people are trying to impress others, they rarely identify what it is that they really enjoy in life. I have seen countless people go into retirement without ever discovering what it is that they enjoy in life and end up leading pretty unfulfilling lives. Chasing someone else’s dreams never means as much to you as chasing your dreams will.
I am postulating that people should take time to identify what it is that they enjoy in life and to work towards that regardless of what others think. I myself discovered this quite a few years back and have been happier shooting for what I enjoy in life and not what impresses others. An interesting point about this is that I have discovered that while others might not be impressed with a cottage I own by a small inland lake, they are impressed with and acknowledge the amount of joy I receive from it.
Also, as an Ivy League educated person who has traveled and lived around the world and spent six years in New York City, I do not have a single friend or family member who is impressed by the banjo, especially if I am playing, but many of my friends appreciate that I love the banjo. I have found that when you love something those that are important in your life love that you love it.
Circling back around to your retirement, and your life, it can be better if you take time to discover what you truly enjoy in life and pursue that without thought to how others may or may not be impressed. I have found that when doing things to impress others. Rarely will others be or admit to being impressed. Instead think more about what you would enjoy instead.