Where Does the Road Lead?
I recently heard some people talking about the "Hedonistic Treadmill". At first I was alarmed because the word Hedonistic kind of scares me. I didn't really know what it meant and it brought up visions of a dark place where I would be forced to roll huge boulders up hills.
That wasn't the definition these people were talking about. By using context clues around the conversation I realized they were talking about a culture of more. I looked up the phrase. If we can gather more we will then be happy.
If I can get this promotion, get this degree, get this new house, etc., everything will be fine. I will be happy. But what happens when we get that promotion, degree, house? Are we then happy if we weren't happy before that?
There is a study that has been popularized and it says a certain dollar amount will change a person's happiness level. That number is the number where the person's basic needs will be met. After that number, the level of happiness does not go up with the increased dollar amount..
If we got a check for a million dollars I'm sure we wouldn't turn it down. Tomorrow we may be happier than today with all of those extra zeros in our bank account. Would we be happier in six months? The new sportscar would have a bunch of miles on it. Watching movies in our new home theatre would be commonplace, not sexy and new like it was at first. The two week trip to the Bahamas would have come and gone. And most of the money would be gone if we were not careful.
How do I stay off that treadmill? I need to be aware when I am on that treadmill. I need to be aware when I am chasing happiness. Happiness could be right beside or inside me.
I need to push the stop button on the treadmill.
Is that happiness sitting under the tree over there? I need to stop sweating on the treadmill and take a seat next to happiness under the tree. It looks like a nice place to sit and take in all the beauty around me.