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And then there is… contentment
By Joan Marques

Last night, just before drifting off in the peaceful world of dreams, I had a simple yet overwhelmingly encouraging thought. I realized that there was nowhere I rather wanted to be at that moment: Not on the street, not at a party, not on a cruise, and not even in another room of the house. I was where I wanted to be. Everything felt good: the bed, the room, the temperature… And my soul. I was content.

Now, how often, if at all, do we care enough to ponder these precious moments? And how simple, actually, are these moments seen within the scope of a life full of achievements and stride? From dawn till dusk most of us try to prove ourselves: to our supervisors at work, to our friends, to members of the other sex, to society in its entirety, or to our own selves. We run back and forth, in search of the one thing that we can do to make a lasting impression. We make appointments, we attend meetings, we obtain lifelong education, we educate in return, we drive, eat, walk, talk, watch television, surf the Net, criticize others, laugh or cry about our mistakes -depending on how bad they are - and above all we make sure that we never stay motionless, because that may make us feel lazy. Or unproductive. Heck, it may even make us fear that we will tumble off the supersonic racecar that is today’s civilization.

And then there is the moment that we just HAVE to take a break: The moment when our spirit demands rest. And if, at that moment, we can afford the luxury of choosing an environment where we feel at ease, that is: an environment where we are comfortable enough; where we can be ourselves; where we don’t have to care how we look or who will see us: a place where we WANT to be instead of HAVE to be; then we have almost obtained it: contentment.

The only thing that still needs to be added to the perfection of a contented moment is the awareness that, no matter where you stand at this moment in your life; no matter how much pressure you are normally under; no matter how haunted you will feel when you get up and start your next stage of the race: you deserve this moment in time, because it is the moment that makes you realize that life is good.

Forgotten are all negative experiences: gone are the glass ceilings, the discriminations, the financial worries, the career concerns, the issues with your children, and the wrong choices you made through time. Healed are the wounds of past mistakes, and distant are the pains of future ones. Vanished are all feelings of limitation, inferiority, or awkwardness. This is the moment in which you realize that it has all been worth your while. And that you’re going to make it after all.

Contentment is the break that the soul needs to reenergize for future encounters with turbulence. It’s the deep breath that we take when we are in full nature, and we feel that our lungs need fresh air. It’s the essence of life, and the decisive factor between giving up and persevering. It’s the rebirth of hope. Yes: Contentment is the reward we get when we decide to choose for ourselves…above all.

Joan Marques, holds an MBA, is a doctoral candidate in Organizational Leadership, and a university instructor in Business and Management in Burbank, California. You may visit her web site at www.joanmarques.com Joan's manual "Feel Good About Yourself," a six part series to get you over the bumps in life and onto success, can be purchased and downloaded at: http://www.non-books.com/FeelGoodSeries.html

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