Very little is needed to make a happy life; it is all within yourself, in your way of thinking.
– Marcus Aurelius
Meaning of this quote:
The wisdom is to realize that happiness lies within us, within our way of thinking. It does not necessarily lie in material things. Material things might make things better in some ways, but, they do not necessarily make you happy, at least in the long run.
While it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t enjoy the materialistic things that you love, the idea is to not associate your happiness with them or to not make them your primary means of achieving it.
After owning something for a while, our level of happiness and excitement decreases linearly. Let whatever you own or buy be nothing more than a tool for your use that makes your life easier, convenient, and more productive.
By focusing on positive and productive things, you might be able to experience more positivity and joy, while the opposite happens if one focuses on negatives.
Happiness is the by-product
As a rule, one shouldn’t aim for happiness as an end goal but instead should work toward doing or making the things that will ultimately make them happy and fulfilled.
You might end up feeling disappointed if you try to chase happiness. You should instead self-reflect yourself, figure out what makes you happy, what makes you feel good, and take action based on those things, if they make sense to you.
Do not source your happiness from external things, from things you cannot control or change. Doing so might result in sadness if and when the external things change, since you may not be able to control them at that time.
The true path to happiness lies in your own thoughts, actions, and the way you do your things. If you associate it with other external factors, you might not feel the same in the long run since those things can be unpredictable and change is part of life.
There is wisdom in knowing that nothing is permanent, and things do change despite our best efforts to keep them that way. Sadness occurs when we expect something we can’t control or change.
You don’t need much to live a happy life if you embrace minimalism
The mind determines how we feel, it is the mind which forms the thoughts, and it is the thoughts and actions we perform that determine how we feel.
Take up a minimalist lifestyle, and make your life clutter-free. Do or own the things that you need or that make a difference in your life. Make your life simple, so that you have fewer things to worry about, and that you can devote your time to what makes you happy.
Minimalism involves knowing what really matters to you and what you want to focus on. When we cut off unwanted things, we have more space for the important things and so we have fewer distractions.
Lighten up, just enjoy life, smile more, laugh more, and don’t get so worked up about things.
– Kenneth Branagh
There is one great quote by Aristotle: “Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom”.
Your mind determines how you perceive things. Train your mind, develop a positive attitude, and don’t forget that life is beautiful, and there are plenty of reasons to smile.
Observe and appreciate small details in your life. Remember that there are people who wish or dream of having a lifestyle similar to yours, so there is no point taking your life or happiness for granted.
It is possible to do great things with minimal tools because it could bring more clarity and therefore greater opportunity to pursue the most important things.
If you have less, you will have fewer things to maintain. Less is beautiful and unique in its own way. Instead of clutter, choose minimalism and focus on the things that really matter.
The consumption society has made us feel that happiness lies in having things, and has failed to teach us the happiness of not having things.
– Elise Boulding