Sunday, April 23, 2006

Don't Sweat the Small Stuff - Be Happy With What You Have Not What You Want

My wife and I just spent the last three days at Tops'l Beach & Racquet Resort in Sandestin, Florida. We were fortunate enough to have been invited there by a couple of our friends from here in Atlanta. While on the beach yesterday, my wife mentioned to me how lucky we were to have been invited to join our friends at Tops'l.

I was reminded of her comment today when we stopped by my parents home in Dothan, Alabama on our way back to Atlanta from Florida. While waiting for lunch to get ready, I thumbed through a copy of Don't Sweat the Small Stuff - And It's All Small Stuff by Richard Carlson. I happened upon a page about learning to be happy with what you have rather than what you want. I realized while reading that I have a tendency to do exactly this. It is very easy to become dissatisfied with what you have if you are constantly thinking about and obsessing about what you want.

I decided to take an assessment of what I have and encourage you to do the same. Here are some of the things that really jumped out at me when I stopped to think about it:
  1. I have a beautiful wife who loves me, and I vow to never take her for granted.
  2. My wife and I are both healthy. You've heard the saying, but it's worth repeating here. If you have your health, you have everything. Think of all the people who don't have their health. They wake up everyday wishing they had a healthy body. Stop taking your good health for granted and start appreciating it everyday.
  3. Both our parents are living and in good health. Never take your loved ones and especially your parents for granted. When it seems like everyone is against you, your parents will always stand with you.
  4. We own a beautiful home. Owning a home is the dream of so many Americans, but many will never see that dream come to pass.
  5. I have a career that I really enjoy. I am fortunate to have a job that I really enjoy. Life is too short to spend it doing something you hate. Find something you are passionate about, and then your work will become your play.
If you're like me and have the five things above, then you really do have it all. As long as you have your soulmate, your family, your home, your job and your friends, everything else is just icing on the cake. Enjoy life and don't waste time trying to keep up with the Jones' because if you could look behind the scenes at their life, you might see that they aren't nearly as happy as you.

Good luck and make it a great day!

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