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Soliciting life/career/happiness/self-actualization advice! - Page 2

post #16 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by ConcernedParent View Post
And about good food/travel, what makes that different from buying expensive shit? Is it not the momentary happiness of buying the item that is similar to that of eating a good meal or traveling to a new place? Fond memories are nice, but they are just that, memories.

Well, food is a continual experience. It's everyday, food is very important to me. I wasn't saying you should prioritize the same things I do, I was using my own interests as an example. Clothes, cars, plasma tvs can be fulfilling if they hold significance to you.

Traveling again, is an experience and continual for me. I don't just go, and sate myself on those memories, I just like to go around.

In the end, experiences enrich you, the individual, while stuff doesn't necessarily stick with you. There's always exceptions where you have a few favourite things and will never part with them. You can't adopt someone else's lifestyle choice and think you'll be happy, just find what works for you.
post #17 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by ConcernedParent View Post
LOL.

Maybe I should go homeless for a year, for some perspective, and just to see if I could do it.......

...................
post #18 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by ConcernedParent View Post
Seriously. I'm young and I have no idea what the fuck I'm doing or what the fuck I'm going to do... as original as that sounds. I haven't had much of an elder/mentor figure in my life, so I figure why not solicit advice/knowledge from those who've lived through it before. Basically, at this point in my life, when I look at the future I look for self-fulfillment as my primary lifegoal- the problem of course being, I don't know what that is for me. Is it being rich? Feeling content? etc... Through most of my life, I figured going to a good school, landing a good job and making bank; living the prototypical yuppie life until I find the right girl and move into the right suburb and send my kid(s) to the right school where they would eventually repeat this (right) life cycle was the defacto route to happiness. I'm not that certain anymore. Of course I would love to have a lot of money; buy nice clothes, drive a nice car, nice house, nice lifestyle, but slowly I begin to question why I value these things. Societal pressure? Perhaps overcompensating for what is essentially, my inability to find other ways to feel achievement and success. Consider this question that pops up more frequently than not. I realize it is so broad, but I'm sure everyone has some opinion on this. Is it better to work hard early on, pay your dues and enjoy the fruits of your labor later on in life? Or enjoy your best years and take life as it comes; because youth fades a lot faster than money. Before this OP moves into TLDR range, I would like to pose a few questions to SF members and would appreciate your response. What makes you personally feel self-fulfilled? Have you reached this point of self-actualization? What would you like to change about your college/career, as in, if you could do it over again, what would you do differently? Any advice/input/anecdotes are greatly thanked.
I have no answers for you, but over the years I've started to think that to be really "self-fulfilled" you need to believe in some kind of religion or greater purpose (full disclosure: I don't). No matter how many great friends you have, no matter how wonderful your wife is, no matter how much you love your kids, all of it is a fragile construct without a deeper foundation underneath. Those things can all unfortunately be taken away from you, and then what do you have? That remainder, what's left over is the foundation that I think you need to be "self-fulfilled" as you put it. It's what gives you a feeling of inexplicable joy instead of emptiness in those fleeting moments before falling into sleep or before reaching full consciousness when waking up. The still moments that give you a glimpse below the surface, when your mind isn't racing with everyday prosaic thoughts and worries. Otherwise, all you are doing is putting your self-fulfillment in external events or states. And doing that really isn't self-fulfillment, is it?
post #19 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by MetroStyles View Post
I have no answers for you, but over the years I've started to think that to be really "self-fulfilled" you need to believe in some kind of religion or greater purpose (full disclosure: I don't). No matter how many great friends you have, no matter how wonderful your wife is, no matter how much you love your kids, all of it is a fragile construct without a deeper foundation underneath. Those things can all unfortunately be taken away from you, and then what do you have?

That remainder, what's left over is the foundation that I think you need to be "self-fulfilled" as you put it. It's what gives you a feeling of inexplicable joy instead of emptiness in those fleeting moments before falling into sleep or before reaching full consciousness when waking up. The still moments that give you a glimpse below the surface, when your mind isn't racing with everyday prosaic thoughts and worries.

Otherwise, all you are doing is putting your self-fulfillment in external events or states. And doing that really isn't self-fulfillment, is it?

Good post, just to comment, I tried this for a day: Basically, pretend you're religious for a day. Anything that happens, "God's will". It's kind of comforting thinking that there is some higher power or purpose out there than your boss, you gf, your job, you car, etc since those things come and go. I'm also not religious
post #20 of 33
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MetroStyles View Post
I have no answers for you, but over the years I've started to think that to be really "self-fulfilled" you need to believe in some kind of religion or greater purpose (full disclosure: I don't). No matter how many great friends you have, no matter how wonderful your wife is, no matter how much you love your kids, all of it is a fragile construct without a deeper foundation underneath. Those things can all unfortunately be taken away from you, and then what do you have?

That remainder, what's left over is the foundation that I think you need to be "self-fulfilled" as you put it. It's what gives you a feeling of inexplicable joy instead of emptiness in those fleeting moments before falling into sleep or before reaching full consciousness when waking up. The still moments that give you a glimpse below the surface, when your mind isn't racing with everyday prosaic thoughts and worries.

Otherwise, all you are doing is putting your self-fulfillment in external events or states. And doing that really isn't self-fulfillment, is it?

Thanks for ruining my life, asshole.
post #21 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by ConcernedParent View Post
I'm not that certain anymore. Of course I would love to have a lot of money; buy nice clothes, drive a nice car, nice house, nice lifestyle, but slowly I begin to question why I value these things. Societal pressure? Perhaps overcompensating for what is essentially, my inability to find other ways to feel achievement and success.
Some people share your thoughts... http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Indust...ocial_problems
post #22 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by JayJay View Post
I think so, but in the process and thereafter the key factors to happiness IMO include:

1. Focusing on building existing and acquiring new relationships, not things.

2. Engaging in activities that are meaningful, fun, and rewarding.

3. Giving of your service, time, and even resources to others.

4. Forgiving others and not holding grudges.

5. Having a sense of humor in that you laugh often and don't take yourself too seriously.

this is great.

I would add a few things - you really need to identify what you "need" out of life. we often try to fight our needs, that is never a path to true happiness.

finding a job you like, some possetions (not all, and not to many) bring you happiness. health, good food. a certain level of status, if you need it. the right level of social interaction - some people need more, some need less.
post #23 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by ConcernedParent View Post
Thanks for ruining my life, asshole.

Sorry, I meant to say "get some cool friends, a nice career that you like, and eat good foods."

post #24 of 33
Alcohol helps me ignore these questions.
post #25 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Frodo View Post
I think the most important thing you can do is find the work you want to do. This is of such importance that all else (except spouse and child issues) pale in comparison. "Blessed is he who has found his work. Let him ask no other blessing."

Relationships (outside of the nuclear family) are wonderful, but you'll soon learn that noone else is building their life around their friendship with you, and if they want to move on, they will. You should feel free to do likewise. Friends come and go. Some, a very few, will be at your funeral, if it isn't raining that day.

Once you have kids, it stops being about you. Dig ditches if you have to. But you keep your pants zipped and take care of your kids. Taking care of your wife is defacto taking care of your kids, and should be viewed as such.

Now, if you honestly have no idea what you want to do for a living, ask what you do for fun, and work out from that center. But find your work, man.

I wish I had taken this advice myself as I'm stuck in a well paying career field from which there is no practical escape, and the only professional joy in my life is the few days centered around payday, when I buy clothes.

Pity me.


that was beautifully written
post #26 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jekyll View Post
This made me think of this. I dunno if it will help, but it's interesting nonetheless.

http://www.ted.com/talks/daniel_kahn...vs_memory.html

Provocative. Interesting question...

How would you plan a two week vacation if you knew you would remember none of it?
post #27 of 33
This may be helpful: the Hindus have claimed you must achieve 1. artha (power/money/wealth), 2. kama (sensual pleasure/love) before you are mature enough to pursue 3. moksha (wisdom- mental liberation). The first two are essentially the pursuit of desire, which is the cage even the most apparently nonmaterialist people are bound by (a charitable old nun still wakes up everyday struggling after positive sensations (joy from helping people, etc), no matter how meritorious they may seem). Moksha is the total abandonment of the physical world and all personal sentiments whatsoever, and requires one be prepared to lose all the selfhood behind their mind, even the very perception of consciousness. ...not an easy task, and it is therefore no coincidence that the Buddha was a wealthy prince with 'all maidens at his disposal' before he became a monk. So, in other words, satisfy your natural curiosity for money and sex before you move on to 'self actualization'
post #28 of 33
I suggest you commit a petty crime. Prison can accelerate the process of self-actualization a great deal.
post #29 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by celery View Post
Last thing, over the last few years, hindsight has taught me that I never really valued most things I bought. They were nice to have, but it was easy to part with them. So now, most discretionary income goes to good food and travel.
This is really good. Lately I've been thinking that there isn't some occupation or activity that brings me true happiness (actually there is but I opt not to pursue it because it yields a negative expectation long-term, but I digress) so I focus on the little things in life that are important: Good food and drink, travel, music, meeting people & creating meaningful relationships, and a good shave.
post #30 of 33
From previous thread on this topic: "People who go on fun vacations or rock out at concerts are better liked than those who use their money to buy fancy cars and jewelry, according to findings from a University of Colorado-Boulder psychology professor. Leaf Van Boven has spent a decade studying the social costs and benefits of pursuing happiness through life experiences. He says people are mistaken to think that buying material items will gain status and admiration, or improve social relationships. "In fact, it seems to have exactly the opposite effect," Van Boven said in a news release. "This is really problematic because we know that having quality social relationships is one of the best predictors of happiness, health and well-being." Van Boven's most recent study, co-authored by CU-Boulder marketing professor Margaret Campbell and Cornell University professor Thomas Gilovich, appears in this month's edition of the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin. For the study, Van Boven and his colleagues conducted five experiments with undergraduate students and through a national survey. They explored whether people had unfavorable stereotypes of materialistic people and gauged if those stereotypes led them to like the materialistic people less than those who pursued life experiences. In one experiment, undergraduates who didn't know each other were randomly paired and assigned to discuss either a material possession or a life experience. After talking for 15 or 20 minutes, they were then asked about their conversation partners by the researchers. "What we found was that people who had discussed their material possessions liked their conversation partner less than those who had discussed an experience they had purchased," Van Boven said. "They also were less interested in forming a friendship with them." In another experiment using a national survey, the researchers told people about someone who had purchased a material item such as a new shirt or a life experience like a concert ticket. They then asked them a number of questions about that person. They found that simply learning that someone made a material purchase caused them to like him or her less than learning that someone made an experiential purchase. So what's the take-home message for people compelled to spend a lot of money on things? Van Boven urges them to change. Research has showed that materialistic people are also less happy and more prone to depression. " Read more: http://www.coloradodaily.com/ci_1487...#ixzz0mjgYjmfX
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