mentality of a “winner”

2012-03-07 12:08 in stuff by Tara Berserker

I have discussed this topic with Lolita last time we saw each other, so it is partially her idea. I find it relevant to my recent post about happiness, especially after watching the link sent by sparkychappy. I realised that in modern world we are constantly bombarded by stories of the “winners”. In our mentality the winner is a person who manged to achieve something- either became famous and rich, won a fight for a cause they believed in, found happiness in love, managed to fight off the mortal disease etc. We are conditioned to believe that being a “winner” is the most rewarding and pleasurable experience and it makes us a worthwhile and valuable human beings. On the contrary a “loser”- person who doesn’t achieve what they want is bound to be unhappy and unsatisfied. On top of that we are told what things we should desire, things that are “good for us” and will make us “win”(for example social status). Homeless people and drug addicts are the most severe examples of “losers” we are shown since our early childhood. We are told that we could become one of them if we let ourselves loose control over our lives. This is how we feel about obese people, unemployed/poor people or single people-”they are losers and this is a horrible place to be”.
I believe that this attitude is what really makes us unhappy. First of all we become jealous of other people and their position in the society. Our beliefs strongly affect our level of satisfaction with life. If we make ourselves believe that we have to achieve certain things in order to be worthwhile human beings, then surely we won’t be able to enjoy who we are.
Second thing is that nobody can win constantly -no matter how hard we try, there will always be situations when we can not achieve what we planned. Third thing is that happiness from winning wears off quite quickly after we got what we wanted. When you observe kids you will probably notice that they get bored of their new toys within a month of getting them. But most parents are convinced that buying new toys will make the kids happy. Many of people around me believe that their lives will become better after they mange to do certain things- buy a house, get married etc. But this awaited happiness never arrives, either because something goes wrong during the process or because our desires for more never stop. The program sparkychappy posted showed our natural ability to be satisfied with what we already have. After our initial disappointment about something wears off, we no longer think about it (at least most of us don’t) and we learn to enjoy the new situation we’re currently in. Each time I go outdoors- either a walk or bike ride in the forests, hills or in the sea side I feel happy and totally satisfied with my life. I enjoy the sunshine (or rain;-[) the wind, the smell of trees and the earth. I don’t need anything else. And then I meet people who talk about their great life plans and achievements and I start feeling like I was doing something wrong, like I was wasting my time instead of trying to gain/ achieve something. Even in the “positive thinking” instruction books they advise you to write down all your “little victories” each day – “today I managed to do this and that” What is this all about? Is it not better to say simply – “Each day I love my life”?