Thursday, October 13, 2011

What makes you content in life ?

Another day and another post taken from one of my Emails to my colleagues.

This post was a response to an Email from my boss:

"What makes you content in life.. Money..Achievements & Recognition (Awards )..Or the smaller things the cliched ‘good bottle of wine and a good book/movie’ or writing defect less code , going on crazy & adventurous trips etc

And more importantly ..when do you think you are content..Will you be able to realise it when you get there…will you stop your “Search for Happyness"

My Reply is below:
(There might be lots of typos and grammatical mistakes, which I don't want to correct, as this mail was written in the heat of the moment and I think should remain so.)

Content/Happiness/Satisfaction… Is a very nimble and rapidly changing State of mind

This state of Satisfaction varies with Time and situation in life.

A Normal Human being (including me) I can’t put a finger on a commodity, an achievement or a state if mind and say:

If I achieve “THIS” I would be satisfied with my life

The Mythical State of Nirvana, in this modern world is exactly that a MYTH

If I wanted to Generalize I would say something like below:
(And as it is true for most generalizations, this again might be false)

Assumption: The character in discussion here is a Male from a Middle class family and lives a more of less Common Lifestyle without too many extra-ordinary events.

Or in other words, A Mediocre Man’s life

If I was to plot the Level of Satisfaction with a Person’s age . Explanation below
(My first ever Excel Graph- So be kind)

Age Satisfaction
1 100  When a child is young, I believe he is most satisfied.

His most pressing concern is food and sleep.

5 90 As he grows a bit older, Priorities change and Materials/Articles and Immaterial things like Toys, start taking Priority as well.

But even the Child is quite satisfied

10 70 Around Age 10, the child’s satisfaction now beings to be manipulated and also dependent on not only his, but his parents’ wishes as well.

They may take away his toys, reduce his play time, not let him watch his favorite TV Show, if they think that the Child needs to study more etc.

So now is the stage, when the Level of Contentment is being stimulated, controlled and affected by other’s wishes

15 50 At the onset of teenage, this is the stage when the child is now growing up.
The child thinks of himself as a “Person”, capable enough of making his own decisions and formulating and controlling his own path in life.

But at this stage, the parents still conceive the teenager as a child, who doesn’t know and understand the world around him. Who still needs their guidance and Holding Hands to keep the child safe.

So this is also the stage of the greatest conflict between a parent and child.

22 80 Around 22, I am assuming that the person is now educated and has also acquired a job
(Yaa.. I know.. big assumption)

So he is at the onset of his new career, about to embark on a new journey of his life, where he is finally not controlled by his parents but gains the independence to make his own decisions and be free
25 50 But the same job which was satisfying to the person at 22 , starts to seem like a hindrance, a diatribe to him now,

He wishes to move on, to break free to bigger and better things in life,

He strives to bring a change to his boring routine. This is also the time when for some the dreams of Grandeur begins,

When the person starts to believe that he should do something to change the world, something to shape the consciousness of the human kind.

Do something which makes him matter as an human being

27 80 Around this age, let’s assume that guy gets married,
(And I am assuming a happy marriage for him) so he is happy.

He is satisfied with his new job, his new life, his new journey of life and this time with a partner

29 40 Now the person, who was once a child and content in his life, becomes a father, and has a child of his own.

He is now worried about the well being of his child and overwhelmed with the responsibilities that bringing a child into this world associates with itself.

His life goes haywire. This is also the start of the Constant phase of Dis-Satisfaction of his life

35 30 The first child is now in school and the second one is on its way.

The state of anarchy continues.

45 40 The children now need to go to college, pursue higher studies in foreign universities.

Our person is constantly trying to keep up with the Rat race and is continuously losing and falling behind.

The needs and wants always seem to outweigh what is available and plausible

60 70 Our person finally is at the end of his Rat Race, he has done it,

He has completed his part of life.

His children are now settled in their jobs and roles and responsibilities in life and finally the person has time to stop and take a breath

80 60 And just when he thought that good times are here to stay.

His health starts to fail him.

The constant medication-hospitals, and sometimes the children who now don’t care about the person bring down his level of contentment

At the end he is finally happy and content, when he passes on from this world.

Its now that he is finally out of the race and reached his ultimate destination

But as one journey ends, another begins, and now its his son’s/daughters time to go through the same vicious cycle .
And the world moves on.



Ashish Joshi said...

nice thoughts ...i liked the number against age ... numbers are always great !

Kanthu said...


cosmic_wanderer said...

Agreed, Numbers always simplifies and puts things into perspective much better then pages and pages of text ever can

cosmic_wanderer said...

Thanks Kanthu :)

Unknown said...

hmmm Life in a nutshell. This is the blueprint of life as we know it, the path is laid in front of us, we just have to walk. We all fight to change this but we all end up living the same life.

cosmic_wanderer said...

@ Shady..

Very well said buddy..
Why dont you elaborate on this idea in a full fledged post


Murali Mohan Rath said...

Another good post. Nowadays I am a regular visitor of your blog. Agree with the first part. Mostly disagree with with the numbers.

Akshy said...

Good one:)

Pooja Abhay said...

Nice even am wondering what makes me content in life? Hmmm..and the answer is currently nothing seems to make me content n yeah am 25, so I guess I should go back to being a year old again!!

cosmic_wanderer said...

Welcome back Murali.

About the numbers, as I said to Nags, :

fine print of the Disclaimer:

“And as it is true for most generalizations, this again might be false”

;) :)

cosmic_wanderer said...

Thanks Akshy :) ,

(Cool.. A Unique name... or was it a typo while creating your id ? ;) )

cosmic_wanderer said...


As the Hypothetical Theory of numbers in the post say, You are 50% content now. :P

World would be such a nice place if everyone was a year old..

(Or would it ? )

Unknown said...

Brilliant you have given Abraham Maslow a whole new meaning...

yashika said...

hey u r 100 percent correct.Now what is ur age and how u understood full phase of life.

Y said...

Omg this proves that the satisfaction level goes haywire after you have a child. My poor mum. I have spent 80% of my life annoying her!

cosmic_wanderer said...

@Vikram ..
Hahahhaa ... Maslow.. Really .. ... Wowww.. Thanks I guess

cosmic_wanderer said...

@Yashika ...

Observation is a very powerful tool.

After all lets say: The researchers who study the far away planets and galaxies are not out their amongst them,

Or even the Botanical/Zoological Researchers are not animals or plants themselves.

cosmic_wanderer said...


Hmm.. Havnt we all :)

Soumyadeep said...

so much of truth in ur post..i feel d same...

Karthik (Sp) said...

Excellent post bro :-)

Rajendra Raikwar said...

Very Nice Post!

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