“How are you?” “How are you doing?”
We are asked these questions all the time, so much so that we don’t actually stop and think about the answer.
When you were a young boy or girl, did you want to be “okay” when you grew up? All of life was ahead of you, and it was going to be wonderful. There were adventures to be had, things to learn, and love to be discovered. Somewhere along the line we learned to settle down and act responsible. Great was no longer an option, “fine” was about as good as it got. Everyone else was fine, so that must be normal.
I propose to you that “okay” or “fine” is no better than “absolutely shitty”. If you are not able to answer “great!” and truly mean it, you have a problem. Life is way too short to not be taking every step you can towards great. Taking the steps toward happiness, the steps toward peace, and the steps to living instead of just existing. But we put off taking the steps because the stresses of daily life are blocking us at every turn.
Mounting stacks of bills
Trouble with our relationships
That evil thing called work
Raising our children
Taking care of our parents
We can’t possibly take steps toward great if we struggle just to be okay.
Eliminate all that is not essential from your daily grind. Sell stuff you don’t need and get ahead of the bills. As hard as it may seem, eliminate toxic or doomed relationships. If you hate your job, find one you can live with even if it means doing without things you thought were vital to your life (like cable TV or daily soy lattes). Love your children and parents, and tell them that you will no longer be settling for a marginal life. Take care of your mind and body like they are the only ones you will ever have.
I realize it sounds simple, but in reality can be immensely difficult. Taking the first little steps on the path to great will give you momentum, and momentum will give you bigger steps. Those steps will become easier and easier over time. Suddenly you find yourself answering with a huge smile and saying “I’m great!”
Take whatever steps you can. You don’t have forever.