Life IS The Journey

Maybe it’s Disney, maybe it’s not, but almost every story we’ve heard growing up ends with the protagonists living “happily ever after”. It’s become a meme. As much as we definitely know that life isn’t a happily ever after (no matter what we do), our actions often represent something different.

The stories we tell ourselves rhyme with the stories we’ve heard our whole lives. It looks like this: I’m going to do something hard, achieve something great, then live in that blissful zone forever.” “I’m going to put myself out there, find the love of my life, and live a happy married life forever.” or “I’m going to work hard on my career, become CEO, then I’ll be happy.”

The truth is that everything worth achieving requires difficult work to maintain. Life isn’t a race to get to a blissful future, life is the difficulties it took to get there. It’s the twists, turns, losses, loves, highs, lows that we encounter along the way.

Put another way, it’s as if we expect that life is hard until it’s not. And once it’s not—once we’ve achieved something or arrived somewhere—then we can really start enjoying it.

If you want to enjoy life, enjoy life. All of it. Especially the 90% of the time when you’re in “middle”. That place where your transitioning from where you were to a desired future, but you’re not quite there. Let me tell you, you’re there. Right now. You are both (1) in the good old days, and (2) the best is yet to come.

Practicing gratitude, being present, and even just physically forcing yourself to hold a smile for 30 seconds are all ways you can begin to enjoy the rest of life too, not just the “enjoyable” parts.

P.S. This is day 12 of 30 in my challenge to write every day for 30 days.

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