This is the second and last article on the subject, ‘The Ideal life’. Therefore, if you have not read the previous article, I recommend you do so. I implied in the previous article that having nothing more to accomplish, and believing that we have reached the final destination of our quest in life is undeniably the beginning of depression and rumination. Most people who suffer from depression are people who have not cultivated the habit of setting positive goals in association with realizing a delightful dream. In addition, I stated that we can be whatever we want to be, as long as we keep to the specific qualities of the ideal life. I also promised to share these qualities in this article.
So, what exactly are the qualities of the ideal life? What must we do to live an ideal life?
Are you growing; i.e. are you improving your abilities, skills, knowledge, character, etc. Do you have some imperfections or deficiencies, and are you working to improve them? By noticing some positive changes in your life as a result of your hard work, you will be happier and more satisfied. Every effort you make to improve your skills or to add more to what you already know is a positive contribution to personal growth. Therefore, do not scowl because of the discomfort and stress you experience in the course of striving to enhance your abilities; for those stress are essential to personal growth.
Make growth an endless goal, and work to improve your abilities till the day you cease to exist in this world. Seeing that you are getting better and better each day will make your life more meaningful and fulfilling. You get to delight in the fact that you are on a higher level than you used to be, and you know that where you are today is not where you will be tomorrow. You feel that you are making positive changes to your life, rather than being static. You are also confident that you will grow into a person whose abilities are far superior to his/her old self. And you are curious to know how that feels like.
The rewards of personal growth are limitless because growing, in itself, is limitless; there is no limit to how high you can grow. Step out of your comfort zone, take calculated risks for the right reasons, learn something new, confront your fears and anxieties, practice more, develop your skills, and face up to your stubborn weaknesses. All these will make you find life more meaningful. You do not exist to be ordinary; you exist to be extraordinary. Therefore, no matter how great you think you are, you can and should always aspire to be greater.
One of the essential characteristics of an ideal life is the ability to solve problems. Having problems can be a source of distress and unhappiness, but a life without problems to solve can be even more distressful. Such life would be, in fact, meaningless. Problems vary and may come in different forms. However, every problem is there to increase your analytical and creative abilities, as you make considerable effort to solve them. Solving problems on a regular basis will enhance the process of self-induced evolution, increase cognitive power, and improve character strength. As fire strengthens iron, a man grows stronger with each problem he makes an attempt to solve.
Problem-solving, whether in your career or in other areas of your life, will allow you to experience some level of fulfilment which may not be experienced in any other way. Devising effective solutions to complex problems, solving puzzles, completing a difficult video game, inventing technology, solving tricky mathematical questions, finding cure to some diseases, developing stellar business ideas, confronting your fears, these are some ways we improve the quality of our lives.
As easy and convenient as it feels to be apathetic (indifferent) to the struggles, hardships, and afflictions of other people, including those around us, you are also making it difficult for yourself to experience long-lasting fulfilment. You will certainly experience some fulfilment as you endeavor to grow endlessly and solve complex problems, one after the other. However, unless you are willing to shine a light into the lives of other people, you will never be genuinely happy.
I agree that it is easier to give up on other people and let them ruin their lives. Showing empathy and wanting to help others can feel like you are adding more problems to your life, and by extension, lowering the quality of your life. However, what we receive, and what we make for ourselves alone, die with us as we make our exit from the land of the living. All your wealth, fame, technologies, heightened abilities and accomplishments will mean so little if you do not positively affect other people one way or another.
Contribute to humanity. Give out from what you have, be it knowledge, insight, affection, or opportunities. Show respect, treat other people with importance, encourage, motivate, and show love. Be welcoming, cordial, and supportive. Be accommodating, patient, and forgiving. These simple acts of kindness, in addition to your aspiration to grow and solve problems, will make you experience long lasting fulfilment in life.