In the society we live in, it seems we are conditioned to always think in terms of what we don’t have. We are told to keep dreaming, keep reaching for that pie in the sky. We are bombarded day in and day out with images telling us we don’t have enough and we should want more. Every car ad, every fashion magazine, every radio commercial, every billboard says we need whatever it is they’re selling in order to be happy. Bigger is better or so the advertising and marketing world would tell you.
I get caught up in that net. I think about the future and where I want to be. And then I think about what it will take to get me there. And then I think of all the things I don’t have and I feel myself sliding down the rabbit hole.
Thankfully, as I keep moving along this path of enlightenment, my inner voice has become louder than that one in my head that seems to only have negative things to say. The inner voice tells me to seriously chill out and take a look around at what I do have. It demands that I make a list in my mind of all the things I thought I wanted when I was younger and to tick off each thing I achieved. Of course, when I was younger, the things I wanted were so much more tangible. I wasn’t exactly thinking of world peace back then, I was thinking of the kind of car I wanted to drive and where I wanted to live. I did end up with both those things although the latter turned out to be not such the dream I’d painted it out to be. I achieved some of the things I wanted, while others manifested themselves along the way.
I realize I have a lot of Haves. And they are far deeper than the Have-Nots. A new car, no matter how amazingly cool it is, isn’t going to make me a better person. It might give the appearance that I have somehow done well, but inside me, where it really counts, I’d still be me. What I realized is the Haves aren’t always as easily measured against the Have-Nots.
The Haves aren’t things you may be able to purchase. But they are things that will define your life. The Haves become a part of you, for better or worse. Haves bring growth and learning and, yes, enlightenment. Have-Nots are things forgotten as the years pass, or they lose value. Haves never lose value.
So, if I am completely honest, I have an amazing amount of Haves that our culture can’t provide. I may not be rich according to the standards set by society, but I know I am richer by far in who I am and that’s something no amount of Have-Nots could give me.
Listen. I’m all for living the Good Life, but I think, in struggling to get somewhere other than where we are currently, due to some sort of promise, from some unknown source, that we’ll be happier, is a HUGE untruth. Look at what you have, the things money doesn’t by and then see if you aren’t rich at all. Call it Love, Honor, Friendship, Family, Peace, Loyalty, Dignity, Faith, Strength, Happiness . . . Those are only a few of the Haves you are lucky to, well, . . . have.