Four Keys to Being Content

Have you ever known someone who is content? Not the kind of contentment that demonstrates itself as complacency, but the kind of contentment that says “I know who I am and I can enjoy where I am.”  The kind of contentment that looks like peace — that looks less like pushing and straining to get this or that. Or be this or that.

Here are a few keys to help you emulate that and live a more contented life.

Practice being grateful.  Think about the situation you’re in – and the goodness that is in your life.  Journal. List. Post the things you’re grateful for regularly.

Stop comparing.  People come at life with different assets and opportunities built in. Stop looking at someone else’s situation and wish it were you. Don’t compare what you’ve accomplished with someone else – especially those who are further down the road in life or who have had unique opportunities for advancement.  Enjoy where you are and ask yourself – “what can I learn from this?”

See life in seasons. It’s true in nature and it’s true in your life. This is a season – it will change and you will change. Where you are today, you will not be tomorrow, next month or next year.  You have a lifetime to pursue many talents and goals. They don’t all have to be accomplished before you’re 35.

Celebrate others. Rather than viewing others as competition – or begrudging others their successes and accolades – celebrate them. Throw a party. Send a note. Genuinely express your delight for someone else’s wins.

Who do you know who seems content?  Share this post with them and thank them for encouraging you to be at peace and to be more content. 

Image via Emari Traffie

Penny is a marketing consultant, writer and mentor to young creatives and social entrepreneurs. She spends much of her time marketing feature films and other entertainment properties. She previously was the Vice President of Marketing at International Justice Mission and has a passion to see injustice eradicated on the earth. She’s married and happy about it. She has two sons, a daughter-in-law and two alpacas. Follow Penny @pennyhunter.

  • Stephanie January 7, 2015

    Hi! This post could not be writtten anyy better!

    Reading through this post reminds mme of my good old rooom mate!
    He always kerpt talking about this. I will frward this write-up to him.
    Pretty sure he will have a good read. Many thanks for sharing!

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  • Olivia March 6, 2014

    What a beautiful and gentle reminder. I do so much look up to the contented people I know and hope the same for my attitude and outlook. Thanks for the encouragement!

  • Allie March 5, 2014

    What a wonderfully encouraging article! Thank you for sharing. I strive to do all of these things every day. Doing what you love, believing in yourself, supporting others and having their support in turn is a great help. Being truly content is an amazing thing.

    I’m an actress and a writer. Year before last, I had the good fortune to be in the world premiere of a new musical called The Harmon Galloway Show, written by David Orris, David Hollingsworth, and Mara Hitner. I sang the lyric, “When you’re grateful for what you’ve got, you create a life you love.” I believe that with my whole heart.

  • Betsy Cañas Garmon March 5, 2014

    Observations from my coaching practice and mentoring sessions, [And true confession, from my own life, too…] align with this insight. Looking left to right or getting lost in how-it-should-be, is a huge source of stalls, angst and frustration. This short list is full of wisdom and keys for self-awareness, freedom and presence. Bravo! And thank you.

  • Leslie Musser March 5, 2014

    in a world permeated by social media this is incredible insight. many avenues of virtual interaction run the risk of encouraging comparison and despair. particularly as a fashion blogger where trends are constantly changing & emerging, it is important to stay grounded in a moment–always looking for areas of improvement without spiraling into a pit of discontent with current blessings // opportunities. thank you for this wisdom.