A neighbor of mine owns his own business. He often tells me about how much he spends on advertising in trade journals and at trade shows to attract new customers. According to him, he spends $.95 to make $1.
When you chase the dime, you end up wearing out $100 shoes to catch it.
A friend of mine has spent the last several years trying to find the meaning of life. He went from Christianity to Buddhism, psychology to philosophy. Every few months, he finds a new meaning of life. In other words, he’s no closer to finding the truth than he was when he first began.
When you chase after meaning, you often end up chasing your tail.
How about happiness? Surely that’s worth chasing, right?
Another friend of mine was going through a tough time in her marriage. When she talked to her mother and told her what was going on, her mom replied: “Whoever said anything about happiness? Happiness is a bonus if you find it, but life isn’t about being happy….”
Strangely enough, my friend’s mom wasn’t a big hit on the motivational speaker circuit. But you know? She’s kinda right…
When you chase happiness, you end up out of breath. Chasing happiness is like chasing smoke. You can’t grab it. When does smoke come to you? It comes to you when you’re standing near a fire. Then smoke has radar for your head.
So for your Monday, ponder some words from Martin Luther King, Jr. that are easy to understand but hard to apply:
Those who are not looking for happiness are the most likely to find it, because those who are searching forget that the surest way to be happy is to seek happiness for others.
Chase the dime if you must. If nothing else, hard work can keep you out of trouble. Or seek meaning if you’re so inclined. Philosophy can strengthen your foundation. But if you would seek happiness, give it away.
Today, find a way to make someone else happy. It’s the surest way to find it yourself.