“One can have no smaller or greater mastery than the mastery of oneself.” – Leonardo Da Vinci
I just finished a great little show on Netflix called “Love”.
(not recommended for young audiences)
In one scene, the main couple are sitting together in bed.
The female lead, Mickey, turns to her boyfriend, Gus, and says:
“Ever since I was a little girl, all I wanted to do was live in a nice house and read some books and have a quiet life. Is that so wrong?”
In my opinion… Nope.
Nothing wrong with that at all.
In fact, it sounds kinda great to me — in theory.
But in reality, every time I’ve tried to ease off the gas and shift into a slow, simple, ambition-free lifestyle…
…I’ve quickly changed my mind and pressed the pedal back down to the floor.
Not because I’m hooked on some “grow or die!!!” brainwashery.
But simply because I feel happier when I’m in hot pursuit of a large vision.
That’s an important point to understand, if you want to live a happy life:
Everyone has different needs.
Some need more ambition, action, and purpose.
Others need more leisure, comfort, and security.
And most will fall somewhere in the middle of the spectrum, with a personalized mix of purpose and comfort being optimal.
None of those options are right or wrong, or better or worse.
The right option is the one that makes you happiest, and the wrong option is the one that makes you less happy.
Life is a choose-your-own-adventure game, after all:
And the only way to lose is to let someone else choose your adventure for you.
So my encouragement is to ask yourself what really makes you happy, and start running some experiments to verify your answers:
How much ambition and growth makes you happy, and at what point does it start to make you less happy?
How much comfort and leisure makes you happy, and at what point does it begin to make you feel lazy and purposeless?
Same goes for:
How much socializing vs how much alone time?
How much routine and structure vs how much spontaneity and flow?
How much adventure and risk vs how much safety and security?
As we said in The 9th Law…
Cast a wide net.
Run lots of experiments.
Gather the data, and learn yourself deeply.
Take notes on what makes you truly happy, and what makes you feel most alive.
Then, organize your life around those things, and cut out the rest.
Before long, you’ll be living a life of your own design:
Full of things you love from morning until night.
Why would we live any other way?
P.S. Yes, our 9th Law session is all about discovering your life purpose.
Which, on the surface, looks like an ambition-heavy path.
But look deeper:
Your purpose is totally unique to you.
It could be an action-packed global mission, or it could be simple and personal.
Or, it could be somewhere in-between.
Which brings us right back to the point of today’s chat:
Learn what makes you happiest, and your purpose will unfold naturally.