Have you ever been excited about an achievement only to feel your joy evaporate in the wake of someone else’s success or one-upmanship? This month we’re examining comparison and contentment — and cultivating joy and gratitude in all aspects of your life.
P.S. I’m excited to share my recent Posh Seven magazine interview about my coaching approach and guidance for living a life of meaning and purpose.
Contentment is natural wealth, luxury is artificial poverty. — Socrates
Health is the greatest gift, contentment is the greatest wealth, faithfulness the best relationship. — Buddha
Why Contentment is the Only True Wealth
We’ve all been there. One minute, a new car, big promotion, or a good piece of news has you over the moon. The next, a friend or family member’s comment about his or her bigger, shinier achievement has you green with envy or doubting your success. It’s shocking how comparison can destroy our happiness in an instant by robbing us of contentment.
But others’ accomplishments don’t have to detract from your own joy and satisfaction. By avoiding the comparison trap — Theodore Roosevelt described it as “the thief of joy” — you can cultivate true happiness and peace through all of life’s ups and downs.
Alfred Nobel, founder of the Nobel Prize, once said, “Contentment is the only real wealth.” The wealth of contentment is self-generating; it comes from within ourselves, not from external sources.
Contentment reduces stress, improves your outlook, and makes life more enjoyable. It provides the freedom to be and enjoy who you are and appreciate what you already have without longing for more or feeling inadequate. Through contentment you’ll cultivate joy and peace from your experiences and live the life you were destined to.
Tips for Cultivating Contentment
A few tips to crush comparison and grow more satisfied and joyful.
- Give to others. Helping others by sharing your talents, your time, and your money increases contentment. Through the process of giving, you gain appreciation for who you are, what you own and what you have to offer.
- You are enough. A lifestyle of contentment will remain elusive if you’re not happy with yourself. I always encourage self-improvement by working towards goals to achieve your dreams. But it’s also important to seek contentment with who you are and where your life is now. Be kind to yourself, acknowledge your assets, and celebrate your achievements.
- Be grateful. Gratitude is the surest way to battle discontentment when you find yourself struggling with comparison. It’s through gratitude that you focus on what is good in your life, rather than what you lack.
- Celebrate small wins. Next time you make progress on a goal or have a small success, share your excitement with others or treat yourself to something nice! Big successes are fewer and farther between, so make a big deal out of your smaller accomplishments to increase your motivation. Allowing yourself to experience satisfaction and gratitude leads to contentment.
Focus on the Future
At Leap Forward Coaching we have a process to help you cultivate contentment to gain new perspective and find increased fulfillment and peace in your life. Our thoughtful methods help you focus on the here-and-now and live your best life!
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© 2014, Leap Forward Coaching