Eudaimonia Tip # 16 – Hard work returns sweet satisfaction
Every once in a while I like to come back to the premise of this blog. First, I love to write, and for a long, long, loooong time I wrote solely for myself, but I knew one day that I wanted to write for the masses by writing the next New York Times bestseller! What writer doesn’t dream of becoming the next Tom Clancy, J.K. Rowling, or Stephen King? Putting the novel idea aside (for now) I decided to start smaller and researched what it would take to start a blog. The whole thing is pretty simple, find a domain name you like, pay a company to host your website and whala… you are in business.
Well, almost, there is that pesky thing called content. But what can I write about that people want to read?
About a year ago I was taking this business ethics class where we studied ethical theories such as utilitarianism, deontology, and virtue theory. One of the first things our instructor told us was to pick a theory that we identified with, in our personal and professional lives (because you wouldn’t have a different one for each) and apply that theory throughout the class. After studying all three, I realized I was a virtue ethics girl. You know… being virtuous and knowing the difference between right and wrong and choosing to do right. Stealing is bad; giving to charity is good, that sort of thing.
As it turns out, Aristotle’s idea of being morally good, or virtuous had an end game. Aristotle theorized that people are happier and more satisfied with their lives when they work hard to achieve their dreams. Now being greek he had to give this theory a very complicated sounding greek name: eudaimonia (yüdēˈmōnēə). Crash Course Philosophy #38 explains it this way https://youtu.be/PrvtOWEXDIQ
“ A life of Eudaimonia is a life of striving. It’s a life of pushing yourself to your limits and finding success. A eudaemonistic life will be full of the happiness that comes from achieving something really difficult rather than just having it handed to you.”
Improving our lives requires sacrifice and setbacks along the way, but the more we push forward with new goals, the stronger we become in character. When we focus on our strengths and work to improve our weaknesses, we become a better version of ourselves.
Eurika, I found my content. Who doesn’t want to be a better version of themselves? Hence the Eudai (yüdē or you day) life was born. As if this concept wasn’t enough I realized that eudai was not just an abbreviated word, but instead, I could turn it into an acronym that stands for:
Excellence: We can find one area in our lives that we can strive to be excellent. Maybe you need to up your running game? Maybe you should aim to get an A on your next assignment, or give a stellar presentation at work? The area that I work on to be excellent is this blog because I have to challenge myself to post regularly and make sure the content is relevant and accurate. You have no idea how nerve-wracking it is to figure out what I’m going to write every week, but I love the challenge.
Understanding: The world needs more of it, but that starts with each of us to stop listening to the talking heads on our smartphones and TVs thinking they have everything right. Make sure you are taking the time to understand the full story and another point of view. Research the topics that interest or confuse you, so you are understanding all sides of the story.
Determination: A key ingredient in life that helps us move forward is determination. There are so many things that can set us back, but with the right mindset to not give up on our goals, our dreams will happen. I’m determined to drop this weight because I know I can be healthier and feel better.
Authenticity: Being authentic can be scary, even with ourselves, but the more we put on a mask to appease others the harder it will be to know what we stand for in life. While it feels good when we are liked, we need to make sure we are being liked for who we really are and not pretending to be.
Inspiration: We all need to be inspired by something or someone. Inspiration is the fuel that keeps us going. My inspiration comes from God and all that He does for me in the most unconventional ways. His grace and mercy never cease to amaze me. I thank God for whispering in my ear and giving me the courage to start my blog and giving me the strength to move on with my life.
So, there you have it, to recap the eudai life is not new age, it’s old age, it’s not trendy, it’s steadfast, and it’s not anti-god it’s God inspired. I’m excited that I finally took the step to start my blog and even more excited that I am pushing myself to be better than I was the day before. The eudai life is for anyone that wants to join me in finding happiness and the sweet satisfaction that only comes from hard work. Hard work by pushing ourselves to aim for excellence, have understanding, be determined, display authenticity, and seek inspiration so we can all achieve a life well lived.