Jonathan Haidt, a famous psychologist and author once wrote about “The Progress Principle,” which is that “Pleasure comes more from making progress toward goals than achieving them.” Let’s keep this in mind next time we’re in pain while hiking, or working out, or growing. Long-term over the short-term.
In the long run, completing a marathon makes us happier than eating a chocolate cake. Raising a child makes us happier than beating a video game. Starting a small business with friends while struggling to make ends meet makes us happier than buying a new computer. These activities are stressful, arduous, and often unpleasant. They also require withstanding problem after problem. Yet they are some of the most meaningful moments and joyous things we’ll ever do. They involve pain, struggle, even anger and despair- yet once they’re accomplished, we look back and get all misty-eyed telling our grandkids about them.
As Freud once said, ‘One day, in retrospect, the years of struggle will strike you as the most beautiful.'” -Mark Manson (pg.85)