By Madison Pena
One of the biggest faults I have noticed in modern society is our false idea of happiness. It is common for people to think that happiness is based on how much you have or how much you are loved by others, but in reality, it is something you can only find within yourself.
It is easy to assume that buying a certain item, getting a certain amount of Instagram likes or even being around someone you love will make you happy. Everyone shares that rush of excitement when you finally get your hands on the latest iPhone, but how long will it take for you to start complaining about how it lags or how someone else has a newer version?
The happiness that materialistic items give us is extremely temporary. When we live in a constant state of comparison, it is all too easy to move on once we get what we want without taking the proper time to enjoy it. Suddenly, that wave of happiness is gone and we are left feeling unfulfilled again.
We may be hit with a dopamine rush after posting a photo on social media and seeing those likes and comments role in. But what about the crash when you see that someone else’s photo got more likes?
Constantly seeking approval from others may result in short-term happiness, but its risks are much more negative than positive. It is hard to ignore these popularity contests when everyone us is so fixated on likes, but it is important to at least try to separate your self-worth from your social media.
Similarly, when people rely on a relationship to make them happy, they will be left feeling lost once it ends. In romantic relationships, it is all too easy to make your significant other your world, but this is both unhealthy and unrealistic. Significant others can’t always meet your expectations. It is crucial to be happy by yourself before being happy with someone else.
We often assume that being in a relationship is the key to happiness, but in reality, relationships are work and not always rainbows and sunshine. Seeking validation through material items, attention on social media or a significant other will never result in long-term happiness.
Instead of looking for the approval of others, focus on yourself. Instead of fixating on the likes on your latest post, think about whether or not you were genuinely happy when taking it. Instead of looking to others for fulfillment, shift your outlook and create your own happiness.