We Should Do What Makes Us Happy
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What we should do is a question that plagues so many of us, but what we would really benefit from doing is to avoid getting caught up in ‘shoulds.’ We can spend our whole lives trying to do what we ‘should do,' and trying to achieve what we think we should want.
You should get a good education from the ‘right’ schools, you should be serious and responsible, you should work hard, you should strive to get ahead, climb the career ladder, find a ‘suitable’ partner, get married, have kids, look after your parents, go to church, donate to charities, keep in shape, have a nice house and car. The list is endless. These things can all be well and good, but it doesn’t mean that you must do them if they are not what you know in your heart is right for you.
This is an overwhelming number of things we are told we ‘should’ do. We are left with very little space in our heads or our lives for thinking about what we want to do. It is so easy to get caught up in following the crowd, and striving for the things that society says we should do, have, or want. If you feel that your life and your time are being dominated by things that are not really your choice, it’s time to reassess.
On the treadmill of more-better-best that is so much a part of modern society, there is no chance for reflection. You need to get off, if only briefly, and take stock of how you are living your life. Are you doing what you should, or what you want in most areas of your life? If your life is one big ‘should,’ it’s definitely time to make some changes.
Do you even know what you want? So many of us don’t. Following our hearts and our passions is not encouraged. Following the crowd is. When it comes to considering career goals, the question that is usually asked is ‘what should I do with my life?’ rather than ‘what do I want to do with my life?’
Why is thinking about, and pursuing, what we want so uncommon, and even so difficult? We don’t want to be thought of as selfish, or self-centered, and choosing happiness and a different path are sadly often portrayed as selfish.
‘How could you throw away all the money we spent on your education by becoming an artist?’ your horrified parents ask when you mention a desire to paint as a job. Irresponsible, frivolous, unreliable, and unstable, are all possible criticisms we might receive if we dare to listen to our hearts and follow our desires.
It can also be downright scary to think about what we really want. It is easier to go with the flow and just follow what everyone else is doing. To break free and go your own way takes courage. If you don’t think too much about what you really want, you can ignore the gnawing feeling in the pit of your stomach telling you there has to be more to life than doing what you 'should' do.
Once you really examine your desires, it puts a bit more pressure on you to do something about them.
But how would you rather live your life? Do you want to continue for years doing the things you think you should do and collecting the material possessions you are taught you should want? Or would you rather stop, get off the treadmill and listen to your heart. Figure out what you really do want, and gradually honor yourself by finding ways to fulfill your true desires?
Surely it is worth the effort, the uncertainty and the risk of other people’s disapproval, if it means you can find what you want and begin living your dreams.
The only thing you really should do in life is figure out what makes you happy. You owe it to yourself to try!
How to Be Happy Is Simple
Regain Your Power by Declaring I Want My Life Back
Dare to Be Different
It Feels Right to Follow Your Heart
Choose to Say I Did It My Way
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