A bit late but here it goes, 10 brand new questions to make you think this month.
This post is part of a sequence, you can read the other three posts here, here and here. Go to the last link if you want to understand more about this project.
- On a scale of one to ten, how sad are you? Why?
One of the questions in December was the opposite of this one, it was how happy instead of how sad. This question is important because one is not exactly the opposite of the other. There’s something in the middle between being happy and sad. So even if you gave 5 for happy, it doesn’t mean you’ll give 5 for sad.
- What is your resolution for tomorrow?
You can think of tomorrow as an abstract concept. What is your resolution for the future? What steps do you need to take to complete it?
- Are you seeking contentment or excitement?
Again, this is one of those questions that might help you make decisions in the future. It can make you think long-term wishes rather than immediate gains.
- Are you in love?
This question is important in both situations: if you’re single or in a relationship. That’s because if you’re single and your answer is ‘yes’, you have to think about what it means to you and what you should do about it. If you’re in a relationship and your answer is ‘no’ then something is not quite right. If it’s the other way around then everything is how it should be =)
- What is your biggest obstacle right now?
And what can you do to remove it? Or at least go round it.
- What are three things you have to buy?
The key word here is ‘have’, not ‘want’ but ‘have’. If you really have to buy it then go ahead and do it or start saving for it. Otherwise, think twice. Do you really need it? Is it worthy of the price? You might want to write your shopping list here but try to think beyond that. Maybe you don’t really have to buy anything.
- Write down the cure for a broken heart.
It might come in handy in the future. Although let’s hope not lol. This one is more for entertaining purposes.
- If you could change something about today, what would it be?
Reflecting about your day and how you feel helps you reflect about yourself and what you can do to be better.
- What’s the most expensive thing you’re wearing now?
This one follows the same principle of number 6. Why is it expensive? Did you buy it or was it a present? If you bought it, was it necessary to spend that much money? Or maybe you’ll find out that you haven’t spent that much money on anything at all which might make you feel better about your financial decisions.
- What’s the last dream you remember?
Dreams can actually say a lot about you. No, they won’t predict your future but they represent your present. Your dreams reflect your feelings in real life. If you’ve been having nightmares, you’re probably really stressed and anxious in your daily life.
“People universally tend to think that happiness is a stroke of luck, something that will maybe descend upon you like fine weather if you’re fortunate enough. But that’s not how happiness works. Happiness is the consequence of personal effort. You fight for it, strive for it, insist upon it, and sometimes even travel around the world looking for it.” – Eat Pray Love
I really love this quote because it explains the whole point that led me to research about happiness and consequently the reason why I have this blog. I think you need to fight for happiness and not just wait for it to fall into your lap. Sometimes that means you have to make changes. They might be big changes: quitting your job, getting a divorce, moving to another country , travelling the world. Or small changes: sleeping well, waking up earlier, taking up a course, going out more. But sometimes that fight for happiness doesn’t necessarily mean you have to actively do something. Sometimes the effort you have to make is to actually practise acceptance. Instead of fighting against your present situation, you have to accept it and make peace with it in order to find happiness.
I don’t think it’s a choice in the sense that you can just decide “I’m happy now” and you automatically become happy but I think it’s a choice to go after it.
I have been striving for happiness, reading about it, trying different things, making changes. And you might ask me: is it helping? Absolutely! I did go through a rough patch even though I was looking for happiness. I felt like giving up but I didn’t and now I’m finally reaping the rewards of my efforts. I believe that this is the meaning of the quote. You need to try hard to find happiness even if it’s not something you do consciously. Most people don’t wake up one day and think “I’m going on a search for happiness.” However, happy people have decided at some point in their lives consciously or unconsciously to go after what they want, to practise acceptance, to find contentment, etc. I believe it’s more difficult for some people than it is for others. That can happen for various reasons. Maybe your brain, your family or your circumstances don’t help but it is there for you to find. We can all get it if we try hard enough.
I am originally from Brazil but I’m currently living in Oxford. Every time I go back to Brazil on holidays, I have this strange feeling that I don’t fit there anymore.
At first, it seemed crazy, I lived in Brazil most of my life and I have only been living in Oxford for two years. So, I thought a lot about it and the conclusion I reached is that I had never actually fit in Brazil. I have always felt that I didn’t belong there. There’s nothing wrong with Brazil, on the contrary, it is a wonderful country. Many people think Brazil is a great place to live. The truth is that when I lived there, I never thought I didn’t belong there, I just thought I didn’t belong anywhere. That’s because I didn’t know anything different from the life I had there.
Nowhere is perfect. If you expect it to be, you will never be satisfied anywhere. There are things that are better in Brazil and other things that are better in England but the important part was to weigh the things that were important to me, my priorities. According to my priorities, Oxford is a better place to live at the moment (although not the best). But I am well aware that Oxford is not the best place to live for everyone. There are actually many Brazilians that come to live here and can’t wait to go back.
A proof of that is that people from England constantly ask me “Why the hell would you want to leave Brazil?”. But at the same time, people from Brazil ask me how they can move to England and say how lucky I am to be able to live here.
The best place to live is the place that satisfies your most important priorities. They say the best place to live in the world is Vienna in Austria but I’m sure a surfer wouldn’t think so.