Too often we are so preoccupied with the destination, we forget the journey.-Unknown.
The destination I speak of are your aims or goals.
The journey is what you do to meet these aims and goals.
To have lasting, fulfilling success and happiness, it is obvious that you should enjoy and feel fulfilled about the journey and have fulfilling aims and goals.
Hey, is that all! Yes, that is all, but in life you are never going to 100% enjoy both the journey and the destination always.
So what do you do?
Yes, you have to balance enjoyment at the current time with payoffs in the future.
The Hamburger model of happiness by Tal Ben Shahar can help us understand this a bit more.
According to Ben-Shahar’s model, there are four archetypes that people can show in the way they live. These are:
- “Rat Racing.”
Let us understand what these mean using a hamburger example.
Nihilism – Nihilists have lost the joy in life. They derive no present pleasure in their work or life, and expect no future benefits or rewards. They’ve “given up.”
“Nihilistic hamburgers” taste bad and leave you feeling ill.
Hedonism – Hedonists live for the moment. They pursue pleasure and an easy life, and give little or no thought to future consequences and plans.
Hedonistic hamburgers taste great, but make you fat.
Rat Racing – The Rat Race archetype often sacrifices current pleasures and benefits in anticipation of some future reward.
Rat race hamburgers are boring but are good for you. But you might not get the future reward for some reason.
Happiness – True happiness is achieved when there is a perfect balance between present pleasure and future benefits.
Happiness burgers are healthy and taste great. You are happy while you eat it and it is healthy for you.
So if you want to enjoy both the journey and the destination, here is what you need to do:
1. Establish meaningful goals. Ensure what you are aiming for in life will be fulfilling.Begin with the end in mind.
2. Enjoy the journey: Ensure that the journey you will take to meet these aims is one you will enjoy.
3. If now, you are doing something that you don’t enjoy or are working towards a goal that you don’t think is fulfilling, find a way to change this.
4. Understand that it is impossible for you to feel happy and fulfilled all the time.The point, however, is to spend as much time as possible engaged in activities that give us both present and future benefits.