A lot of us are familiar with the story of Into the Wild. Dude (Christopher McCandless or ‘Alexander Supertramp’) ditches all his material possessions, leaves behind the ratrace and his college degree and hitches up to Alaska to live amongst the bears and the salmon and the deer and a big bus for a while.
Twist in the story: Dude –who has little experience roughing it in forgiving conditions let alone in freaking Alaska– ends up starving. And while slowly fading away, all on his ownsome, he comes to realise ‘Happiness is only real when shared.’
That’s true. But contentment is only real when solitary. Sharing happy times, happy days and happy moments with the people you care heaps about is Happiness. But happiness is volatile and tenuous and easily shaken. Contentment is permanent, unwavering, solid. And being content with oneself can only happen with self-examination, self-reflection and understanding what you really want out of life and why.
And after all, we spend much more time solitary than shared. Contentment should be the goal; Happiness should be bonus.
That’s why I prefer this:
Because it doesn’t take much for this:
to change to this:
Because even when this happens:
It’s still possible to aim to be like this: