What Is Important to Life and Happiness?

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Often our view on what is important in life changes when our situation becomes different.
Money comes more into focus when our job security is threatened.
We are reminded of the importance of good health when we hear that someone we know has become seriously unwell.
Let's look at the things in life that are important: - Health is most people's number one consideration.
We often take our health for granted, but if we meet someone whose life in affected by a chronic condition or are in permanent pain it suddenly brings into focus the importance of good health.
Many of us have heard of someone who smoked a hundred cigarettes a day, drank a bottle of whiskey and lived to be a hundred but it is a sensible move to support our own good health by looking after it and investing some thought into a healthy lifestyle.
Diet, exercise, stress management, sleeping patterns are all important in life to pay attention to.
- Money is important to many people but it is interesting to appreciate how little money it is possible to live well on.
How much of what we buy that we regard as essential is actually not so.
If we look at much of the advertising done these days it is about creating a need where there didn't use to be one.
A lot of the purchases that are made, replacing things that are still okay, buying several items so we have a choice, are done for reasons other than necessity.
Some money is important, but many people could manage on rather less if they actually had to.
- Family and children can be fragile, tempestuous relationships.
Many people struggle with those nearest to them but then, when there a danger of losing those special people suddenly appreciate their real value.
Children grow up very quickly and parents can come to regret missing out on sports days and school plays.
Parents age and their health starts to fade.
These relationships cannot be revisited once they have gone.
Valuing how important family is needs to be an ongoing effort and commitment.
- Occupation is important in life.
Having something that is done to challenge, stretch us, provide satisfaction and perhaps a little stress is important.
Aimlessness is unhealthy.
Many people benefit from having something they do that occupies their time.
Voluntary work, looking after grandchildren, having a project in the garden all count as something that needs attention and commitment.
It is important to our happiness to be needed and be contributing something to society.
- Companionship makes a big difference to quality of life.
People with whom we can chat, have some interest in, share even a small amount of time with are important.
Animals make good companions too.
Even a goldfish or a bird in a cage provides something that we can connect with, feel an attachment to and ultimately care about.
- Faith is important to many people.
Believing in something that created us all, created the world and life is a central tenet of many people's lives.
Spending time in meditation, prayer, giving praise can provide comfort and purpose to life and be a defining role in happiness and contentment.
- Treats are important.
Giving ourselves a reward occasionally improves our quality of life and gives us a boost, lifts our spirits, makes us happy.
Buying ourselves a bunch of flowers or some chocolate, giving ourselves an hour to sit and read a book or enjoy the sunshine can all make us feel better about ourselves and about our lives.
Many of us have whimsical lists of things that we say would make us happy.
Winning the lottery, having beautiful clothes, a big house might feature large on our wish list.
But when we really stop and think about it, happiness and quality of life are about much more fundamental things than those.
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