peter's bookstore

exploring the edges of the extraordinary

inward we go

on solitude, friendship, and the pursuit of happiness

last updated on december 7th

We live in a culture that seems to perpetually chase happiness. We're always looking for the next thing that will make us happy, the next thing that will make us feel fulfilled.

However, research has shown that once our basic needs are met, incremental gains in wealth, success, or status have a diminishing return on our overall happiness. (Just Google "hedonic treadmill" for more info.)

Life, as I've come to understand, is a series of moments. Then, isn't it worth questioning if, in our relentless race to the next big thing, we might be bypassing smaller joys that life offers?

I've been spending a lot of time alone lately, and people who I used to call friends I've now come to realize were more like acquaintances - people I just happened to know as a result of being in so many different circles.

It's not so much about losing touch with people as it is about getting in touch with oneself; in understanding ourselves better, we also become more attuned to the needs and feelings of those around us.

The circle might seem smaller, but it often becomes richer in depth and meaning. The journey inward is not a departure from the world but a deeper engagement with it, from a place of understanding and genuine connection.

In solitude, we find the space to appreciate these smaller joys, the ones that often go unnoticed in the whirlwind of daily life.

It's in these quiet moments that we can savor a sunrise, the aroma of freshly brewed tea, or the tranquility of an early morning when the world is still asleep.