As I walked around the store checking out the new Kindles and Nooks, comparing features and screens along with pricing, I felt my heart rate starting to increase. I was dazzled and confused. As I walked briskly between the two large displays, I caught a glimpse at a third display holding yet another Kindle. It was shining under a spot light and boasting a most impressive price tag, surely it must have been the holy grail of e-readers. I ogled it, flipped through the ‘pages’ and pictured just how much better my life would be if I owned it. I would be happier, certainly.
I have a laptop (two actually but let’s just say one is my husband’s), a basic Kindle and a smart phone. My husband has an iPhone and iPad. We are always within reach of one or all of these things. My laptop has a permanent place on our dinette. Yet I found myself being pulled by the belief that having more or newer would equal better and happier.
I sometimes get suckered into it all…the glossy ads and ‘best of’ suggestions sent to my inbox urging me to try the latest and greatest e-reader, vodka, cell phone, coffee, jeans, shampoo, mascara…ads designed to convince me that I am unhappy with what I already have but I just don’t know it yet. How could I be so delusional thinking my old mascara is good enough?
But then, I head to the store to buy my little package of happiness only to be confronted by 27 different mascaras. Do I want fuller lashes or longer lashes? Brown, brown-black, black, blackest-black…I’m overwhelmed and I no longer know what I want or even what I like…it’s paralyzing. I finally fold, grab my precious, life fulfilling wand of magic, pay and as I head home the doubt creeps in…I probably should have gotten the waterproof one. I can’t be happy now.Often, having too many choices leaves us wondering what we might be missing having not chosen the other. We can’t stay present long enough to enjoy what we have because we are wondering if the sandwich at that other restaurant would have tasted better than the one we got. We forget to be happy with what we have and that what we have is wonderful (be it our sandwich or spouse).
We end up cluttering our lives and minds leaving not a lot of room for contentment for that which we already possess (or even the freedom we have by not possessing so many things). It’s a difficult cycle to slow down, let alone stop. Seeking happiness isn’t the problem, thinking we can buy it or upgrade to it is. In case you're wondering, I didn't buy the Kindle and I'm pretty dang happy about that.