Happiness can be elusive. So can peace, comfort and contentment. But when I was in college I regularly found a state of complete peace, comfort and happiness. It wasn’t alcohol or drug-induced. Although I did listen to Dr. Dre’s The Chronic more than this parent of 3 would like to admit. But I skipped the Gin, and was simply sipping on juice. #sobersincebirth
Looking back, I really can’t tell if college was a simpler time or more complicated. School, with its odd schedule, intense studying and testing seemed harder than my job seems now. Despite the fact that I now run a multi-million dollar business.
Dating was far more complicated than marriage.
My track and field demands at the University of Wisconsin were both significant and complex from a mental, physical and nutritional perspective.
My finances seemed much more complicated back then too. I had to wrangle a combination of my own money, my parents’ contributions, student loans, grants and an athletic scholarship. I was in a perpetual state of relative poverty. And I remember one of my roommates commenting that it looked as if I did my grocery shopping at Goodwill. Maybe that is why dating felt so complicated.
Despite the complexities of my college life, I remember a state in which I felt whole, complete and longing for nothing. In fact, I still remember summarizing that feeling in a brief email to my parents during my junior year.
When updating my parents on my wellbeing in Madison, Wisconsin, 1000 miles from my home in Norwich, Vermont, I wrote:
‘I have a fridge full of food. A tank full of gas. And a dresser full of clean clothes. Bliss.‘
With those 3 simple needs met I had everything I needed in life. I have never forgotten that feeling. Ever since that time I have felt whole and at peace with my minimum needs met. And it has led to a tremendous amount of happiness. Like Pharrell Williams, in a room without a roof.
I hope that in this complicated time that you can find happiness in the simple pleasure of having your basic needs met. The rest is all gravy.
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