“Just Tell Yourself, Ducky…You’re Really Quite Lucky!”

I think that Dr. Seuss was one of the world’s finest philosophers. What he wrote for children actually serves grown-ups quite well! Take, for instance, the quote that I used as a title. It says a lot and packs a powerful punch when you think about how many of us are dissatisfied with what we have and always seem to want more.

I admit that I am sometimes guilty of saying things like, “I would really be satisfied if only……” Maybe you have those thoughts, as well. I think we all do, but we just have different wishes to fill in the blank after “if only.” The truth is that possibly, for most of us, what we have now is probably what we once wished for. But, when we achieve our “if only,” it somehow isn’t enough and we once again become discontented and unhappy with our lot in life. By doing this, we run the risk of spoiling what we do have by constantly desiring something more. We lose the little joys in life by searching for what we believe to be the ultimate happiness. If we spend most of our time focusing on what we think we lack, we will never feel that we have enough.

There is certainly nothing wrong with having aspirations and dreams; those are good things! And when we work toward a goal and finally reach it, we have reason to celebrate and enjoy the fruits of our labor. But I have found that if I am not content with what I have, chances are I wouldn’t be content with what I would like to have! Why? Because genuine joy comes not from things that we acquire or from any outside source; rather, it emerges from a sense of inner peace, rooted in the knowledge that we probably already possess everything that we need….maybe just not everything that we want. Striving to improve things is a positive action, but living in constant dissatisfaction with where you are in life, is a very frustrating way to spend your days here on earth!

“Be content with what you have; rejoice in the way things are. When you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you.” —Lao Tzu

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