You Don't Need Much To Be Happy
Water, food, a bathroom, clothes to keep you warm, and good company. Everything else is fluff. The private jets, LV bags, exotic foods, vacations, "the club"-- it won't make you happy. So many people throw themselves onto hamster wheels to acquire things that give them pseudo-happiness.
Take a moment to think about the millions of people struggling to get by without life's basic necessities. Our perpetual yearning for more stuff and status reminds me of the line from Cool Runnings, when John Candy's character explains what it feels like to win a gold medal, "If you're not enough without it, you'll never be enough with it." Happiness has been there the whole time. Our task is to gently brush away the dust.
I'm told we derive our happiness from the comparison of our lives to those around us. This is why it can be so humbling to check your Facebook feed. It's like looking through an ESPN highlight reel of everyone else's fun. But I bet if you took a moment to be grateful for your ability to read this online, you wouldn't feel as bad.
When you're enough without the fluff, you can handle life's luxuries. If on the other hand, you constantly need more, there will be no quenching your thirst. The world is a very big place full of wonder and magic and life's too short. What you see on TV is fake. What you see in clothing ads is fake. A father working two jobs to support his family is real. A college graduate working for no pay just to get a foot in the door is real. There wouldn't be dirt in the world if we weren't meant to get our hands dirty once in a while.
Happiness isn't an endless pursuit. You can either choose to celebrate the basic things that give us joy, or you can neglect them while looking for more. I'd argue you already have all you need.