Forget about happiness and sadness
and seek truth.
and seek truth.
--- Anthony Silard
Our society impels you to fixate on short-term pleasure. It sends you packages of information every day—from television ads to advice columns to Hollywood films—laced with values not your own.
These messages encourage you to seek immediate fulfillment and avoid anything that causes you to feel complex emotions. You are encouraged to seek happiness and avoid whatever makes you feel sad.
You become what you give your attention to. Fixate on short-term pleasure and you may become someone who experiences occasional short-term pleasure. Alternatively, determine what you’ve been put on this earth to do and then pursue it with everything you have and this is what you become: someone who lives an aligned, values-driven life.
How do you steer yourself away from truth—and, ironically, happiness—by seeking happiness? You move in with someone you quickly become passionate about because it makes you feel happy now, but ten months later realize that being with them is not aligned with your vision of finding the person with whom you want to start a family.
You drop out of college to pursue music because playing the guitar fulfills you and Sociology 101 doesn’t, and years later realize that you ignored one of your core values: to have an education—a value you learned from watching your father shift from one low-paying job to another.
Anthony Silard is the president of The Global Leadership Institute and the author of the Simon & Schuster book The Connection: Link Your Passion, Purpose, and Actions to Make a Difference in the World. To receive Smile, It's Monday each week in your inbox and a free copy of Anthony's new audio CD, "The Surprising Source of Your Passion", enter your email here (1-step only).