Seeking happiness in external achievements is like relentlessly cleaning a window from the outside ignoring the dust and finger prints on the inside. No amount of rubbing from the outside will ever provide a clear view. You might even obsess over a single spot that is really on the inside.
Inside matters more
So, it is what lies on the inside that is fundamental. Your internal beliefs that shape everything — how you relate to the world, others, yourself and to life itself. If you are constantly measuring yourself against arbitrary external benchmarks, it really never ends. There will always be some dust or mud that splashes against the window that you will feel compelled to clean. Because you believe it has affected your external image and therefore your self-worth.
If on the other hand, your path is focused on an internal experience of doing what matters to you at a deep level, the splashes on the outside lose their importance. Because you are clear about what really matters to you. Because you see the random dust and grime on the outside for what they are — society’s stupid fads and expectations. And, that you need not bother with them because they change, most likely to be washed away with the next rain!
Beyond seeking happiness in external achievements
Breaking free of the inner beliefs and narratives behind seeking happiness in external achievements can feel difficult. Especially if they have been formed gradually over time, reinforced by repeated experience. So, letting go of them may have to be a very deliberate process. And, that process begins with recognising how you might be obscuring your own light from within. How you might need to challenge the various narratives through which you approach life.
Only by having the courage to look within do you really empower yourself to ignore the random splashes from without!
Harsha is a 1:1 coach and independent thinker based in London. He empowers people to find more clarity, confidence and focus in their lives — to cut through the noise, in a world so full of it. Harsha’s new book, Machine Ego: Tragedy of the Modern Mind, is now available in paperback and Kindle through Amazon.