mindset bite #006 - will it really make you happy?


I adore this question by Tim Ferriss: "If you could put anything on a billboard, what would it be?"

Picture it. On billboards outside and inside shopping malls. All of the tangible places we frequent for that 'pick me up' and cheerful feeling. Car dealers. Movies. Fast Food restaurants...

I like to call these "places of instant happiness"
But it's not true happiness they bring...
Is it?

The next generations are being brought up in a reality where we don't need to delay gratification... if they need that little "pick me up", that rush of great endorphins, they can get their fix

Sugar has been shown to have the same neurochemical response as cocaine...

Does that new iPhone truly make you happy? Or is it a form of this instant gratification... the feeling that you're 'cool' and 'powerful' as you now own the newest tech...

That feeling of telling your friends you own it, and the kind of person you think that makes you

Does that new car smell bring a smile to your soul... or is it just to your face? And for how long does it last... I'm willing to bet a month tops

What about those new jeans. Or that new piece of jewelry. That haircut. Or that extra large doughnut and chocolate shake...

All produce a fleeting moment of neurochemicals that soon fade and we're left back in the same place we were previously...

These are all little these 'pick me ups' of instant happiness. Things that fade away with time - much quicker than you expected

These tangibles don't do sh*t for you. You think they do - but they don't really... do they?

Look down at your iPhone or Samsung. Does it truly make you happy? No. It doesn't. But you know what does... intangible things

You yourself, are happiness defined. From all of the intangibles inside you. From feeling grateful. Doing the things you love. Taking time each day to be fully present. These are the things that bring happiness - and they can be drawn upon whenever your heart so desires

We all tell ourselves stories of when we'll be happy. When we get 'this'... When 'this' finally happens... 

But it's all utter BS - as you can be happy right now simply because you decide to be

I can tell you this is true - as I've achieved everything (and more) than I desired this year - and yet, my happiness comes from when I slow down and enjoy the smaller things in life, NOT from reaching & achieving for more

I personally find the less I have, the happier I am...

So, back to the all-important question: "If you could put anything on a billboard, what would it be?"

"It won't make you happy"

That would be my choice. Everyone who sees it will get it. As unconsciously they'll all tell themselves that story... that story about how that thing they want most won't truly make them happy...

And hopefully. In the best case scenario - these kids will begin to see the truth, and they'll go home and be truly present with their loved ones... As that is what will indeed make them happy


Actionable Tips/Questions:

  • The first step is always awareness... when do I feel like I need a "pick me up" and why? Personally, I always reach for sugary stuff late at night after a long day. I'm aware of it, and I can then set an intention to change it
  • The next time you're feeling down, out, and like you need a "pick me up" - ask why... sit with it, what is it you truly need? As you can change endorphins a myriad of ways, and if you identify the source of this issue, you can change it
Nick Maier