We buy things that attract us, as if somehow they’re going to fill our empty metaphorical spaces. We buy the pretty vase because our jobs aren’t what we expected, we buy the shoes and the bag because we ended a long-term relationship, we buy the new wardrobe fillers because our work wasn’t received how we wanted it to. We swipe, select check, savings or credit and enter our pins as if somehow we’re entering the secret code to enter the happy and satisfied life club. The thrill of that if it existed. But deep down we know those things are band-aid solutions. But we ignore them because acknowledging them would be too hard. Too powerful a tug on the marionette strings attached to our hearts. We wander the high streets, the mall strips, peering into the shopfronts, hoping to find something perfect but we’re really looking to find some kind of panacea for our lives. The perfect object, is a substitute for the perfect life. Every time we whip out our wallets, we’re really wanting to buy a better life.
So we’ve got to find ways to feel rich — ways to feel like we have all the possessions we could ever want — but without investing in these empty quick fixes.
We can stroll through a garden. Notice the blooms, their scent, take a photo. Hike somewhere, go to the beach, have a picnic. Do things that make you realise that the fact that you exist is enough to happy about. Sometimes you’ve got to think of the rest as incidental. Everyone’s situation is different, of course, but sometimes we’ve got to find even the smallest thing and get excited about it. It’s a defense mechanism, an antidote to sorrow.
image: Bert Kaufmann/Flickr CC