Wednesday, November 16, 2005

A little lesson from life...

You will never be happier than you expect. To change your happiness, change your expectation.

This is a famous happiness quote by Bette Davis

Happiness is relative to what we think, which age we are in and what ambitions do we have in life.

When I was a child, an orange candy could make me happy. As I grew up, my expectations from life changed and so did the definition for happiness. My happiness was linked to my mark sheet at sometime in life, and then it was linked to how I look, then to admission to a good college and then to getting a good job. When I look back, I realized I was never happy with whatever I had. It was like looking at the horizon and thinking if I'll reach there my journey would end. But we all know horizon can never be reached! It's just a trick, which our eyes play with us.

Ambitions and expectations are also like tricks that we ourselves create. We are never satisfied with what we have. We always want to achieve what others have. A simple example, imagine yourself in an auto-rickshaw standing on a traffic light. It's very hot. You are sweating like anything and cursing everything around you. And then you take a look outside your rickshaw. You see a Mercedes comes and stops right next to your rickshaw. The windows are rolled up, so definitely A/C is on. The people inside are looking as fresh as you must have looked before you stepped out from your home. Looking at them, I am sure you will instantly wish "If only I had that kind of car..." You have wished for something, which someone else has. You have made yourself unhappy for that moment.

I am not saying its wrong or right. Even I have wished for it at some point of time. All I am doing is, justifying the statement that our happiness is linked to our expectations from our lives. If we will always try to achieve someone else's dreams, how can we possible get time to achieve our own dreams.

There are many books in market, which tell you to "How to be happy" or something like that. I am not one of those. All I want to say is, through my life I have learned that to be happy I don't need to look on my side from a rickshaw, see a Mercedes and feel that I should have the same car. I can be very happy in my rickshaw too because at least I am not standing in the sun at a bus stop and waiting for the bus in the heat. I know what I can achieve and what I can't. After all, I am not perfect. But yes, I can try and be the best in whatever I do. Once I realize this, nobody could stop me from being happy.

A very dear friend of mine has said this - "Not everybody thinks like you, simply because they have not led the life you have been leading, so stop blabbering what you would have done." . So, this is certainly not a lecture on how you can be happy because only you can decide how you can be happy. It's just a little experience from my life. I hope it helps you too.