The title of Byron Katie’s book, Loving What Is, speaks for itself. Instead of wanting what is not, we can learn to accept and even love what is, which Byron Katie calls reality. It is human nature to want more. We think more is better and that more will fulfill us and make us feel happier. But how much more is enough? And is more necessarily good for us? Research shows that after a certain point, money no longer satisfies; the same with food and sex and things.
“In America I have seen the freest and best educated of men in circumstances the happiest to be found in the world; yet it seemed to me that a cloud habitually hung on their brow, and they seemed serious and almost sad even in their pleasure. The chief reason for this is that… [they] never stop thinking of the good things they have not got.” That was written in 1835 by Alexis de Tocqueville in his groundbreaking book, Democracy in America. Feeling dissatisfied with what we do not have is not new.
What truly makes people happy? Human relationships contribute to happiness more than any other single thing. So, during this season of plenty, ponder the Fulfillment Curve and rejoice in wanting you have, especially for the people in your life, and stretch into imagining that what you do not have, may not give you what you wanted anyway.
Every day for the seven days leading up to Thanksgiving, we will post a new blog for the series, Seven Days of Thanksgiving. You can also follow The Imago Center of DC on Facebook and Twitter to get our latest articles directly in your newsfeed.