First of all, what dictates true happiness? For me, satisfaction is a key element, but not in the way you might think. It’s not about how satisfied I am but rather how satisfied I am not.
In an interview with Inc. Editor-in-chief, Eric Schurenberg, Tony Robbins said:
“The best entrepreneurs on earth never lose that hunger–they are hungry to grow, hungry to give, hungry to contribute. It’s more important than intelligence. There’s nothing that will stop a person who is hungry enough. A hungry person, failure doesn’t stop them.”
You don’t have to be an entrepreneur to take on this advice. It applies to anyone who is looking to meet goals, professionally or personally. If you have goals to meet, you stay hungry. You stay hungry because you’re not satisfied.
“You’re Never Satisfied”
I’ve always been hit with the phrase, “You’re never satisfied” and believe me it wasn’t spoken as a compliment. For the longest time, I felt bad when I heard it and I felt there was something intrinsically wrong with me. Then I realized that it was okay. I’m just hungry for results.
I’m hungry for growth and development.
You see, if you look at satisfaction as a fulfillment of a current desire, then you begin to understand its temporary nature.
I love Indian food. On those days that I’m going to dinner to my favorite Indian restaurant, I don’t eat much. I want to enjoy the meal and don’t want to ruin my appetite so I’m starving by the time I get to the restaurant. I thoroughly enjoy the food and at that instant, I am full and satisfied but my desire that’s been filled is only temporary. When tomorrow comes, the hunger once again surfaces. And day after day, you keep getting hungry. As Robbins says, nothing stops a hungry person.
But that’s not so bad. You’re driven to success when you are hungry.
Our life’s journey is a series of dreams that we have to transform into goals in order to be reality. Each goal acts as a single step in that journey. Every step we take inches us a bit closer to dream. So as you meet one goal, it may not be the end destination. It’s one step. That’s why you still keep peering down the path to see what lies ahead.
Healthy Discontent Helps You Reach Goals
“Restlessness is discontent and discontent is the first necessity of progress.” – Thomas Edison
If you’re feeling some sort of discontent, then congratulations. That means you’re connected with your desires. Even if you can’t articulate exactly what it is you are trying to achieve, this sort of healthy discontent means you have a yearning to grow.
Before we become excessively critical of dissatisfaction, it’s good to know that discontent has a positive use. Revolutionary ideas are seldom born by complacency and staying in your comfort zone.
Your ambition to strive for new goals helps you beat complacency and your accomplishments are driven by discontent. Dissatisfaction and discontent are the real catalysts for change.
A Word about Happiness and Satisfaction
“Happiness is not a goal…it’s a by-product of a life well lived.” – Eleanor Roosevelt
Happiness and satisfaction are often used together. They seem to have a similar connotation but they describe two different states of being.
Being satisfied is more about meeting an expectation whereas happiness is used to describe the feeling of ongoing bliss in the heart or the mind. Happiness is a feeling to sustain and preserve. Satisfaction may indeed bring along happiness and in return, happiness can bring satisfaction. Just don’t let the desire for satisfaction get in the way of happiness.
So, the next time you hear “you’re never satisfied”, don’t sweat it. It means you are taking steps not to become complacent and you always have an eye on your end destination. Take time to celebrate your temporary victories and embrace your dissatisfaction by turning it into action.
As Tony Robbins said, “There’s nothing that will stop a person who is hungry enough.” That’s why satisfaction is one of my metrics to success.
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