Do you ever think that you will be happy once you get ‘there?’ Have you ever paused to consider where ‘there’ even is? For some people, ‘there’ is an internal place, a place of peace and contentment, for others it may be a physical level of fitness or a particular number on the scales. Sometimes ‘there’ is external, a change of job, a certain amount of savings, finding a partner.
I often refer to this as the mythical land of there! A destination we don’t truly know, and yet we have a strong compulsion to arrive at. I often wonder what life might be like when we get ‘there’. What does it feel like? Do we ever really arrive there? What happens once we reach this place?
Of course, there is no harm in having ambitions, goals, desires, longings, and dreams. We are an evolutionary species and naturally stretch for more of what we want. The difficulty comes when we expect this mythical land of ‘there’ to be a point in time when we feel contentment and happiness. We rest our expectations on reaching this point to dissolve our discontent and provide peace in our hearts. We anticipate reaching the endpoint rather than living the very life we are in. Right here, right now.
If that sounds familiar, let yourself relax a little. Don’t try so hard to make it all happen, it is happening. Alan Watts sums this up beautifully:
“We missed the point the whole way along. It was a musical thing and you were supposed to sing or dance as the music was being played”.
You can listen to his talk “Life is NOT a Journey” below.