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Now that we got Halloween out of the way (whew!) let's get back to business.
Thinking about the long-term is essential for overall happiness. I have a client who's 88 years old and we still talk and plan for what she will accomplish in the future - I absolutely love it!
I believe everything we do is for happiness or more so to be happier. Even if you're a saint and act completely altruistically. Because when we do good, we feel good.
I also believe achieving is a key to happiness. Whether it's losing 300 pounds or 30, actually losing the weight, and achieving the goal, is well worth the effort in the happiness pay off.
To achieve we must not only focus on today but also not lose sight of the goal. That means we have to make decisions with the long term in mind.
Asking ourself the question, "What benefits my future self?" when we're faced with a tough choice helps to focus us. But even still, that requires discipline.
And a key to discipline is the ability to make sacrifices.
So that means ---> Achievement is a key to happiness. Discipline is a key to achievement. And sacrifices are the key to discipline.
Making decisions with the long term in mind often implies sacrifice or what feels like sacrifice or deprivation.
Like moderation though, "sacrifice" is a misunderstood word. Many people think sacrifice means deprivation or giving something up.
What sacrifice really means is giving up something of a lower value in the present to receive something of a higher value in the future.
It's easy to live only for today and shrug off the long term consequences. We're so talented at rationalizing and justifying our poor choices.
But if we know achieving goals will make us happier - and sacrifices are a key component of that - why don't we indulge more in making sacrifices?
My overall argument isn't that it's not fun to give in and listen to our short term self. I'm not saying eating pizza and ice cream isn't fun.
What I'm saying is working towards our goals - as painful as it might seem - as uncomfortable as it might seem in the moment - is way more fun.
And that requires sacrifices which isn't anything but the equivalent of passing up what might feel like a thousand dollars today for a million dollars in the (not so) distant future.
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