“Don’t confuse comfort with happiness.”
– Dean Karnazes
Good morning, friends! I hope your weekend was wonderful in special ways. I’m confident it only was if you attempted so. Let’s attempt something wonderful right now.
With my children advancing in school they are learning about the power of choices. Each year in middle or high school they have the opportunity to make course selections. It is a slow developing opportunity in life; little choice in middle school, more choice in high school, tremendous choice in college and beyond. The system inadvertently prepares us for making important choices as we advance, so how are you doing with your nearly complete opportunity for choice these days?
That’s right. The system that started with few choices has now thrust you into life with little structure and tremendous choice. How’s it going for you? The quote today presents one of the most vexing choices we get so wrong in life. The siren’s allure of present comfort competes with the homely offer of present and future happiness. To wit: today you have the choice to exercise in simple but helpful ways, to eat healthier, to stretch your mind, to forgive, to help, to love, etc. All science shows that these choices will produce greater happiness in the very near term and if continued will compound happiness in the long term. Why don’t we make the smart (happy) choice? Because it conflicts with our comfort and comfort is a siren’s choice.
This week I simply want you to see the truth that is hidden in front of your eyes. When you choose comfort you are more often than not sacrificing happiness. I’m not suggesting at all to seek discomfort; I’m saying make intentional choices that may challenge comfort today but will reap happiness tomorrow and in the future. Trust me, comfort compounds, too, and in ways that create pain, disaffection and loss. Recognize and make intentional choices today that invest in your happiness. Soon enough you will agree that small and consistent sacrifices of comfort may be the best investment you ever make. And that’s real profit, said this prophet! Have a great week.