Let’s start with a metaphor for happiness. When you go out to a fine restaurant with your friends, you make a choice to order a drink. You receive a delicious entree. You participate in a story with a friend. Those are all pieces of your night that you can touch, remember, or re-create.
However, on the drive home, the combination of all those parts is the entire reason you went out. You don’t really care about the food or the story. The complete unexplainable experience and the promise of another similar night is the true reward.
This is how happiness works. You cannot “find” happiness like an item on the menu. It isn’t a step-by-step process. Instead, it’s the constant reward of finely crafting your entire life. It’s not being “successful”, it’s being on the journey towards personal success.
THE PROCESS IS THE PROFIT
There is no path to happiness, happiness is the path.
Just like your fine dinner cost time, money, and energy, all forms of happiness take work. The CEO of a non-profit, working 14 hour days managing a business, is happy from the difference she is making in the world. The practicing zen monk, who is working 14 hour days meditating and eliminating comforts, is happy from the deep and powerful inner peace he’s receiving.
Happiness comes from correctly managing the world around you. It comes from both formal and informal education, where you learn how the world works and how your own mind works. It comes from learning, goal setting, measuring progress, and giving real value back to others.
There are many different philosophies you can subscribe to, and the one below that we preach here at Conquer Today is just another one. You’re about to learn the over-arching strategy we’ve designed to maintain peak happiness levels, and it will be up to you to fill in the details however you wish.
CONQUER YOUR MIND
“You” are not your mind. There are not many things we have complete control over in this world. However, our mind is potentially one of them. Barring real chemical imbalances, your thoughts, emotions, process, and resulting actions are completely under your control.
Training your mind is an essential skill, like learning to walk. However, not many people are showing us how.
You need to become a master of your own mind. Master musicians and race car drivers have spent thousands of hours learning how to operate a machine exactly how they wish. There are real physical limitations to those machines, but within those boundaries you can create incredible feats. And in your mind, you can change how you think. You can eliminate negativity, see solutions over problems, and connect with people. It takes work, failure, and repeated conditioning.
It’s worth it.
CONQUER YOUR BODY
Just like the real “you” is not your mind, “you” are not your body. Your body is simply an incredible tool to help you experience the world. It’s another machine in your life that you have to manage.
It’s astounding to watch individuals spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on vehicles and homes, and then treat the container they live in 24 hours a day so poorly. Your body deserves training and fuel, and it’s essential to our happiness combination.
You don’t have to be a peak athlete or a fitness trainer. You do have to provide your body with quality food and exercise. It was originally so simple, because that is what we were made to do. You ate, you moved, and you were filled with unlimited energy. Unfortunately, our society has made it difficult. We’ve become addicted to short-term rewards and fast-food drugs that make daily healthy living uncomfortable.
Break free from that, and be human again. Run, jump, fight, eat real food. This also takes hard work. But remember, as you manage your mind, it will be much easier to manage your body.
It’s worth it.
CONQUER YOUR LIFE
Your lifestyle is no more important than your mind or your body. “You” are not your lifestyle, your bankroll, or your achievements. Your lifestyle is simply how you’ve chosen to give and receive value with the world. This means your career, your work (which are usually different), your relationships, and the experiences you choose to have.
A healthy lifestyle is probably the most work of all. There are thousands of paths to choose from, and the winners are simply the ones who have never given up.
To live a powerful lifestyle, you need to treat all people as equals, while still choosing who deserves your time and attention. You need to live with a code of conduct, and stand up for what you believe in. You need to give something of value to everyone you can.
Your career and your work is related to your passion. You don’t need to know your passion yet, and it will change frequently as you learn and grow. For now, simply combine what gets you excited, what you are inherently good at, and how you want to improve the world. Move in that direction, and things will fall into place.
No one exclaimed on their deathbed, “I wish I would have bought more stuff.” It’s fine to enjoy the periodic materialistic reward, but never be a slave to it. Instead, hoard experiences. Not only huge adventures like a travel across the world, but also a beer with a friend after a long day. All of these moments are meant to be cherished, and it’s all about being present in them.
With a goal-focused mind and an energized body, a powerful lifestyle isn’t far behind.
It’s worth it.
MAINTAIN YOUR HAPPINESS BALANCE
Remember, you will never be complete.
Don’t ever become discouraged and don’t ever stop making progress. Spend each day taking a step forward. Some days, this means making a giant new decision you’ve been putting off. Other days, it means relaxing with family to reconnect.
Some seasons, your lifestyle will fail you. You’ll have to focus on improving your living situation or your finances before returning to a proper fitness routine. In others, you will be so focused on your own mind that you’ll forget to spend time with others.
Calibrate. Return to balance. You’ll know it when you find it.
Once you have began your journey of mind, body, and lifestyle improvement, you won’t ever want to be finished.
The process is the profit.
The enso circle is a simple Buddhist piece of art. It’s one single brushstroke. Some artists dedicate their lives to drawing only enso circles. It exists to show the interconnectedness of the world, the beauty of simplicity, and perhaps most importantly, the never-ending, never-perfect process of improvement.