The Good Life

Last week was one of those weeks when it felt like EVERY little thing was going wrong. Maddie (my dog) got sick and I had to go to four different pharmacies to get her prescription filled. I was pulled over by a cop for a registration mix-up.  I lost my mail key. Work was difficult for a few reasons, and in the moment, it really felt like the universe was not on my side.

I generally try not to focus on the negative parts of my life, especially if I cannot change the circumstances. When it seems way too easy to focus on the negative things, I find it most helpful to refocus my attention to the positive things in my life and the things that matter most to me.

As I went on a walk yesterday afternoon, I thought about my difficult week and I tried refocusing. Then, as I took in the beautiful fall weather, I stumbled across a TedTalk by Robert Waldinger, “What makes a good life? Lessons from the longest study on happiness.”

In the TedTalk, Waldinger shares how this decades-long study has found strong relationships are the foundation for a happy life. He talks about how loneliness is correlated to poor health. Waldinger also shares that the relationships don’t have to be romantic. Quality friendships can be just as valuable as a romantic relationship.

It was fascinating, and made so much sense. I have found my relationships with friends and family are the most valuable thing. When I think about the big picture, I know my life would be so different and so lonely without their support and the smiles they put on my face. The important people in my life are a huge positive force, especially on a hard day or during a difficult week.

In fifty years, the details of my difficulties will not matter. What will matter is that my relationships with family and friends remain strong, if not stronger than they are today.

“The good life is built with good relationships.” – Robert Waldinger

Here’s to a happy week for everyone!

-SC

 

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