Kyle Wood shares, “What we become depends on what we read after all the professors are finished with us.”
Charles Jones adds, “You will be the same person in five years as you are today except for the people you meet and the books you read.”
Everyone finds ways to meet their first four needs of certainty, variety, significance and love. The challenge is many meet these needs at a low level in ways that don’t serve themselves or others, thus they don’t feel fulfilled long term.
A large meal may provide variety, but is gone in a moment. I may get significance by manufacturing drama, but over time that process becomes boring to everyone.
Everything in the universe is either growing or dying. Growth is where fulfillment finds expression. If you are not growing, then you are dying. Not in a physical sense, but emotionally, intellectually, spiritually and in your relationships.
The average American gains one pound of fat and loses one pound of muscle per year. Besides unhealthy diets this problem is exacerbated by the fact that the average person watches 7 hours of television a day.
Perhaps this helps explain why the United States ranked 23rd in a study of over a hundred countries when asked for how happy they were as a nation. While we have technology that is beyond comprehension, the reality is that human needs don’t change. Whether pauper or king, everyone has the same six human needs, and they can’t be met by simple comforts that money can buy.
In an interview with Success magazine Scarlett Johansson, whose films can be seen at Cleveland’s Capitol Theatre, shared that she learned that the secret to happiness was not found in an exotic vacation or an expensive shopping spree, but in facing new challenges. Thus she has moved from different genres as an actress and soon will be making her directorial debut. It is all about challenging yourself and pushing beyond your comfort zones.
The same is true individually and in a relationship. If your relationship is not growing, experiencing new depths and challenges, you will find yourself feeling stagnant. You must continually push yourself to grow and learn, to take in the fascinating world around you and explore new heights. This needs to be done both individually and together.
Victor Frankl shared that one of the worst tortures in the Holocaust was having men move rocks from one hill to the other. Once done they reversed the process, then did it all over again and then again and again. After a week more went crazy from this experience than any other. The reason? It destroyed their minds; it was pointless and left them feeling debilitated.
So whether you pick up a book, a class, a seminar, an instrument, or anything else, find ways to learn something new every day, find something to immerse yourself in. You will find many more suggestions in the articles to come. For now remember, boredom is depression and growth is life.