What Is Contentment?

Discussion in 'Productivity and Motivation' started by kingsway, Aug 5, 2014.

  1. kingsway

    kingsway New Member

    Someone the other day asked me how i was and i replied 'content' and they said, 'ooh that's not a word you hear much these days'. This got me thinking about what is contentment? When do you arrive at a place in life where you can say, 'i'm content' or is contentment for people who just accept things as they are and are happy with that and don't go after anything else in life.

    Your thoughts please...:)
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  2. A8ch

    A8ch Gold Member

    Very interesting question.

    In my opinion, 'contentment' is a non-permanent state of mind that is never truly static, but is constantly shifting in quality as our core sense of self changes.

    The bombardment of experiences that impact our environment, our relationships, our perspective, our feelings about ourselves and our basic quality of life, all contribute to the nature of our contentment.

    I believe the greater the degree to which we can embrace and appreciate who we are and the condition of our life at the moment, the better the quality of contentment we can enjoy.

  3. Just2EZ

    Just2EZ Moderator

    “He who is not contented with what he has,
    would not be contented with what he would like to have.” Socrates

    "Because one is content with oneself, one doesn't need others' approval."
    Lao Tzu

    “Be content with what you have; rejoice in the way things are.
    When you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you.”
    Lao Tzu
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  4. Just2EZ

    Just2EZ Moderator

    The flip side of that is:
    "Show me a man who is content and I'll show you an underachiever."

    Not sure who said that but it is derivative of an Edison quote:
    " Restlessness is discontent — and discontent is the first necessity of progress.
    Show me a thoroughly satisfied man — and I will show you a failure. "

    You have to get out of your comfort zone if you want to grow.
    That's where the magic happens.
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  5. payment proof

    payment proof Well-Known Member

    Contentment for me is having time to spend with the people I love. :) Working at home gives you more of that. I was much less contented in the past spending hours in the car each week to get to work.
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  6. Vishal P. Rao

    Vishal P. Rao Administrator Staff Member

    This is something I have been working on lately and hence decided to pitch in. Contentment is a very special atribute and I really envy content people. No matter what they seem to be at peace with themselves. Agree that they are not the go-getter type of people but if you contemplate, where are you trying to go? What are you trying to achieve? There is no end to it. The mind will always change goals. Achieving/Contentment are both attributes. One who is an achiever will always try to achieve something. One who is content will always be content no matter what he is doing.

    Trust me, contentment is something that everyone should work into. It is the need of this hour. We have achieved too much. Our forefathers were lot happier as they were content with themselves and their lifestyle. The present generation is so much stressed out trying to achieve something. We already have what we need. We just need to shift our attention to what we have than what we need, to which there is no end.

    Add faith to contentment and nothing can shake you in this world.
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  7. A8ch

    A8ch Gold Member


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  8. kingsway

    kingsway New Member

    That is so true. When you hear yourself saying things like, 'i need a new challenge' i think that is a symptom of the turmoil that is taking place inside an individual because you're never satisfied with where you are because we are always trying to get someplace else in life and when we arrive there we don't sit still for 2 minutes before we are running after yet another goal that we think we need.

    I always like to ask myself the question, 'who am i turning into in pursuit of what i want'? When i am becoming more impatient or difficult to live with because i am so goal-driven then i have to adjust myself on the inside, when i am at peace on the inside everything else just seems to fall into place without all the striving and pushing and the path is made a lot clearer...
  9. Vanessa Deifel

    Vanessa Deifel New Member

    "Comfort kills" is something my business partners and I say often. People who are content with their life as it is have no desire to change or achieve more or to grow. For some....this is ok. They have achieved their dreams and desires and are content to simply live life. For others....they are "comfortable" with the status quo and have given up on achieving their dreams, feeling that they are always going to be out of reach, so they simply stop trying.

    This is sad to me. People should never stop dreaming. It adds vitality and zest to life....and there is always a new dream on the horizon.
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  10. Vishal P. Rao

    Vishal P. Rao Administrator Staff Member

    I guess giving up or under achieving has nothing to do with contentment. Contentment is a state of mind where one is totally satisfied with the present moment, but at the same time involving oneself in some activity. Contentment is not inactivity or lethargy or underachievement. A child (not a kid) is contented. Do you find them boring? They are full of energy and enthusiasm.

    Or shall I assume that the opposite of contentment is feverishness/dissatisfaction?
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  11. Robin Bull

    Robin Bull Member

    I'd rather be content than happy. Unfortunately we humans have this nasty habit of attaching happiness to people or things...both can disappear. Content is a much better state to be in because it implies that it comes from within.
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  12. UltimateWingman

    UltimateWingman New Member

    Content is another word for Complacent

    Complacency is a disease =X
  13. A8ch

    A8ch Gold Member

    Welcome to the forum, Jason!

    At first glance those words do appear to have the same general meaning and are often used interchangeably.
    But closer inspection will reveal a very subtle difference, in my opinion.

    A person who is CONTENT is expressing pure and peaceful happiness and satisfaction.
    A person who is COMPLACENT is expressing happiness and satisfaction that is infected with smugness and conceit.

    The result is an inferior quality of happiness and satisfaction.
    No wonder you call it a disease. :)

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  14. UltimateWingman

    UltimateWingman New Member

    You know what you are absolutely right ;) Great job dissecting it!
  15. kingsway

    kingsway New Member

    Hi Jason. A contented person is a focused person. To arrive at a place of contentment doesn't come by hoping it will just fall out of the sky or take a 'whatever will be, will be' approach and hope everything turns out ok that's being complacent.

    Contentment is a valuable commodity to own because it is evidence of the mind thinking the right way. When our thoughts are in the right place then contentment follows and this allows us to make good decisions rather than chasing after something that won't bring contentment.

    Complacency is definitely not another word for contentment. I think the problem is because most people when they hear the word contentment they think of someone giving up, or settling for where they are, or going with the flow.

    No way, focus brings contentment.

    Thanks, Paul. :)
  16. UltimateWingman

    UltimateWingman New Member

    Great response Paul! :D

    Contentment is no doubt a great commodity! Nothing better than being in the state of happiness haha.

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