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Choosing Happiness: Life's Influences and Decisions

I am at a stage where I've realized that many of the things that have been bothering me no longer bother me. The regrets I thought I might have no longer remain as regrets. Naturally, a strong purpose for performing certain acts has been generated in my journey from childhood. This has happened because of various good factors influenced by society and the people I am surrounded by.

However, among the good were also the bad influences that occurred in my life. I wish to share this with those in their late teens because many things we consider "cool" or "high standards" don't stay as they are, or we realize those were not the way we thought they were. I also understand that with time and situations, the points I mention here might vary. And, of course, it varies from person to person. But there are certain common factors that you might find relevant or connect with your life as well.

So, as humans, let us understand that the ultimate goal we seek is happiness. Every action of ours is linked to this. We also seek joy, excitement, gratitude, pride, optimism, contentment, and love. But ultimately, all this leads to happiness, and that's what we settle for. In the journey to achieve these, we use both easy and hard ways. Most of the time, the easy ways give us temporary satisfaction or achieve the various moods I spoke about for a shorter period, with certain negative aftereffects for a long time. And the hard and consistent effort gives us long-lasting results.

What's the path we choose during our teen years? We, or our parents, allow us to excel academically when we collect certain information and also get dumbed down by various outdated information. We seek knowledge from our friends, some inspirational people around us, media, and books. We also get our brains to work, think a lot, and conclude certain things and make them our belief systems.

The above leads us to perform actions that we believe will keep us happy. Let's talk about short-term actions first and then get to the long-term actions.

The short-term ones are,

Falling into a relationship quickly: Teenage is when we have the curiosity to look for a partner. A well-understanding partner helps you in many ways. They can be a strong supporting system during your hard days. But choosing someone to only seek quick dopamine would destroy your future. You will have a lot of setbacks from the emotions that can linger in case of a breakup scenario. So, in case you choose to have a partner, take a longer time, spend a lot of time with them, and then once you get the feel of a strong bond, then only commit to that person. Also, always focus on giving rather than receiving. Never be in a relationship for some mere happy moments, flings, and to get rid of loneliness.

Depending on alcohol & other stimulants: Although it might be okay to drink and try things socially, having any dependency on this would destroy your present and the future. Whether to try this is a debate open to all. But depending on it to distract yourself from reality will only postpone the acceptance of anything that went wrong in your life and also will multiply the effect of some bad experiences. Do not use these to avoid any sorrows, or insecurities, or to get rid of your fears. Also, never use this to feel valued.

Social media validations: In the beginning, this feels so cool and great, but eventually, you will understand most of the people out there only envy you and are not amazed by what you are doing. The ones who are happy about your achievements are with you, and they don't go and check your social media to know this since they are already with you on the journey and they know a lot more than what is there on social media. Use your social media to leverage your life but use it less to showcase your achievements. Your achievements can be shared with your loved ones, and you know they will be so happy for you as always.

The above are a few of the short-term actions, and there are many more. I will quickly refer two most important long-term ones.

The long-term one being,

Focus: Yes, consider focus as an action. Understand it's always action. Focus won't give you any sudden satisfaction; it is an action that is going to yield results in the next 2-5 years of your life, and what it gives you is absolute freedom. Freedom from a lot of your false imaginations, false faith systems, and false convictions. Focusing on one thing for a considerable amount of time gives you lessons that pave the path to success.

Prioritizing: The act of prioritizing will gift you the glory of fulfillment. This is achieved by giving time to the most important activity and ignoring anything that deviates from it. Every time our heart wishes to do one thing, ten other things come to our mind, and there is a chance we deviate to those still knowing it's bad for us. That's where you need to prioritize and do only what is needed and ignore the rest of the thoughts.

The journey towards understanding what truly brings us happiness often involves navigating through a mix of good and bad influences. As we grow, we learn that the pursuit of happiness encompasses seeking joy, gratitude, pride, optimism, contentment, and love, but it's the path we choose to achieve these that define our experiences and outcomes. Short-term actions, like rushing into relationships, depending on substances, or seeking validation through social media, may offer temporary satisfaction but often lead to long-lasting negative consequences. On the other hand, long-term actions such as maintaining focus and prioritizing what truly matters lay the foundation for sustained happiness and fulfillment. These actions require patience, effort, and a commitment to self-growth. Ultimately, happiness is not just about the moments of pleasure but about the deep sense of fulfillment that comes from living a life aligned with our values and goals.

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