Saturday, August 13, 2016

223. Happiness, Evolved

My idea of happiness has changed over the years. When I was between the ages of 10 and 13, my favorite thing to do was to save some money I got from mowing the lawn and working at the roasted sweet corn stand and then go to Target or Wal-Mart and buy a CD. I bought Pink Floyd, Beatles, AC/DC, and a bunch of others. I also loved going to Barnes and Noble in Roseville and buying Calvin and Hobbes books. Those were good times. I loved just browsing and picking one out and then spending the next few hours with it.

It’s kind of amazing how much our commerce has upended that for me. I don’t buy CD’s all that often anymore. I usually just buy local bands or ones that I know. Most of my music comes from public radio or streaming services. I still buy books, but I get some off the internet or I reserve them from the library. I wonder what changes will come next in this line of commerce.

I don’t really find happiness in purchasing stuff anymore. Or, I should say that I’m much more cognizant of how commerce affects the way I feel. I have a mortgage, student loans, and other costs that come with the territory of being an adult. My money means a lot more to me, and so I’m inclined to examine the things I spend it on much more.

I’m happy when I’m writing something good. I love seeing something really good that I wrote awhile back and finding out that it still moves me. That’s a good feeling to know something you wrote still has staying power. I find happiness in my friend’s accomplishments. I like seeing friends do well at a show or accomplish something big in their career or family life.

I’m also happy when I’m watching soccer. I love it. Something about the storylines, the weird and crazy culture associated with it, as well as the international flavor just gets me. It makes me happy that the Premiere League is back. I also love the GFOP community surrounding the Men in Blazers community. It’s a podcast that helped me get through a new phase in my life. I owe those two english blokes, Rog and Davo, a lot. They’re good, weird, funny, passionate people. I’m happy to “spend” an hour or so with them every week. I definitely look forward to it.

I also enjoy reading a lot. My attention span has shortened quite a bit. I’m not exactly sure why, but I’m guessing it has something to do with the amount of time I’ve spent in front of a computer or on my phone. I like when I can get lost in a book or a good article in the newspaper. I just started getting the Sunday Star Tribune, so I’m going to have to block out more time for reading.

I’m glad that buying things doesn’t necessarily make me happy. Life is so much bigger than cash transactions.

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