Thursday, 11 April 2013

Rainbows, Happiness and Risk

The more money and material goods we have, the more we want - and the less they bring us satisfaction.

The real key to feeling good it seems is to give and keep on giving.

When we stop putting a monetary value on what we do, it is immensely liberating.

We also have an obsession with happiness as though it were yet another purchasable product.

As a child I once tried to stand in the end of a rainbow to feel the colours on me. I ran back and forth across a wet field with friends shouting directions across the cow pats.

But rainbows can't be seen from close up.

And the irony of happiness as a product is that it disappears when we look directly at it, as ephemeral as that rainbow.
When we are young we jump into a pool whether we can swim or not.

We have no fear.

Either we swim or we drown.

Before the age of thirty important things happen to us which shape the rest of our lives.

The first is:
We become aware of ourselves and our own thinking. We reach the age of reason.

The second is:
In our new-found maturity we begin to think in a more adult way.

We become grown up.

Recklessness and risk are not compatible with age.

Risk becomes something which must be carefully considered.

Or is it!!!

We all have a negative voice in our heads that stops us from taking risks. Ask yourself what you really have to lose.

Most of the time it's about ego and less about any real loss. Go first. Have the courage to do something before waiting to see if others are willing.

“Two bubbles found they had rainbows on their curves.
They flickered out saying:
"It was worth being a bubble, just to have held that rainbow thirty seconds.”

~~ Carl Sandburg

Cockatoo Island Art Exhibition, Sydney Dec 2011


Christine said...

Nice post...I once tried to jump off my slide holding an umbrella to see if I would fly like the flying nun. I figured I'd be light enough! Your rainbow thoughts made me think of that.

miruspeg said...

Thanks for sharing your story Christine......oh to be young and adventurous!xxxxx

bill lisleman said...

I like that quote.
I believe in being realistic about age. However it's sad that the child's wonder of the world disappears in too many adults. Keep asking why and learning.

Anonymous said...

Great post Peggy. It is so true about what we value in life. Money isn't all it's cracked up to be. I'd rather live comfortably and be able to do the things I enjoy doing than live in a big mansion playing the game of keeping up with the Jones. And whoever said we can't chase rainbows.

miruspeg said...

Bill - It's a great quote isn't it, a very visual one.
I hope I will always keep asking why and learning....being around young children certainly helps.

Jen - Thanks for leaving a comment my friend! I have never been one who wants to live in a mansion or drive a flash car and certainly never wanted to "keep up with the Joneses". The simple life is the life for me!

Marja said...

A lot of wisdom and food for thought dear Peggy. By coincidence I found a poem which also relates youth to courage (and doesn't relate youth to age) I also think courage can disappear as we are to afraid what the world thinks of us and we don't dare to be ourselves. I still sometimes struggle with that. I love your analogy of getting happiness with getting close to a rainbow. Great post.
Arohanui marja xx

miruspeg said...

Thanks for your insights Marja.
Daring to be ourselves can certainly be difficult.

One way to overcome this is to make alternate families of small groups of like-minded people who support each other, talk regularly, where we can speak our truths and relate our experiences and work together and take risks.

Namaste and big hugs. xxxx

Lilly said...

Hello stranger I finally have some time to catch up. I think I have gone the opposite way. I was always considered in my decision making then took a big risk only to fall flat. I am really risk adverse now.

I do love what you say about money and possessions. The oler I get the less I want. I really dislike the cluttered feeling. I like the idea of recycling though. One person's trash is someone else's treasure.

And happiness - we chase and chase and never satisfied. I like word content now more than happy. I strive to be content - the happiest of states for me.


Mike Smith said...

Sometimes, not taking risks is the biggest risk of all. Hope all is well, Peggy.

miruspeg said...

Hello lovely Lilly!
I have never been much of a risk taker, quite conservative actually (not in my politics though!)

As I age I am learning to trust my intuition and if that little voice tells me to try something that I am not quite sure of I hope to find the courage to follow my instincts and take a risk if necessary.

Your are right about contentment. Happiness is something that comes and goes. It is about excitement, fun, moments, actions, and material things. Contentment is something that lasts, about going with the flow, enjoying the satisfaction of work and appreciating nature and life.
Thanks for all your comments, it's always great to get your feedback. xxxxxx

miruspeg said...

Hey Mike
I know where you are coming from. We both had to take a gynormous risk, you more-so than I.
But here we are today, quite content.

I love this saying:
"And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom"
Big hugs my friend. xxxxx

Roban said...

Of course, I love your song choice and your post! I can just see a young Peggy running across that field trying to soak up those colors. It has taken me longer to know who I am, and I'm not quite there yet. As for risks, I don't think age should limit us, however, the opportunities presented or the rewards of taking a risk should be worthy of us sticking our necks out. While I don't take risks that would negatively impact my family or life, I am still up for a few high-flying risks!

miruspeg said...

I knew you would like that song Roban, when I selected it, you came to mind instantly. :-)

I don't believe we will ever fully get to know ourselves, its a lifetime journey or as I believe many lifetimes!

I very much hope we get to fly together one sunny day, what a memorable day that would be.

Take care and big heart hugs. xxxx

Can-Can said...

I facilitated a workshop yesterday morning and told the participants (and myself): Stop waiting for IT to happen before you move. Now is the time. This is your life. Carpe diem. Go for it. With age, I'm going for certain things with much less hesitancy. I've blown opportunities in my life because of my internal critic and various fears. Thanks for the strong ereminder.