I found a really interesting quote the other day:
Some people are so poor, all they have is money.
I was really struck by this quote when I found it. After I graduated from college, and lots of my friends started working on Wall Street or at large banks or consulting firms, I've wondered many times if I made the right decision.
Why did I choose to study literature, instead of finishing my pre-med requirements? Why did I pursue a career in writing, rather than in technology or finance? I'm making far less money than those who made the opposite choice.
But whenever these thoughts start to get me down, I remember:
happiness is not measured in money.
Success is not based on a number. Everyone has a different ideal for their future, a different system of values, a different definition of what it means to truly succeed.
To me, happiness is being surrounded by loving friends and family. It's late nights full of laughter. It's seeing the world, and being astounded by the beauty it holds. It's finding someone with whom you share the purest, most instinctive connection you can imagine.
Happiness is having time for yourself, and time for those you love. It's being there for those who need it, and having someone to rely on in your tough times too. Happiness is cooking exotic new dishes, and tasting incredible food. It's doing what you love, loving what you do, and being excited for the day ahead – every day. Happiness is being healthy. It's achieving your goals, and always having something to work towards.
Happiness is a life full of love. It's knowing how to enjoy the sunny days and the rainy days alike. It's believing in yourself, and the power you have to create a beautiful future for yourself. It's knowing you're never alone; it's being a whole, well-rounded individual; it's knowing who you are and what you stand for.
When I wonder if I made the right choice, I look around and remind myself:
I am the happiest person I know.
So if you ever have a doubt, remember: Trust your choices. Be yourself. Follow your passions, and the rest will follow.