|brian douglas skinner|
1986 -- at age 20, in college in Scotland
Back in 1986 I wrote this list of the things that I thought would make me really happy:
a room of my own (a single)
freedom from financial worries
a warm, sunny climate
minimal job stress
a computer of my own
a thriving intellectual community
a big hairy, healthy dog
a sense of purpose, something worth working for
a sense of cohesive world progress toward an honorable goal
In 1986 the only ones that I had were #1 and #2, and I wasn't too happy. At the time most of the other items on the list seemed pretty remote.
1992 -- at age 26, living in California
Six years later, in 1992, I was poking through a box of old college notes and happened on the list again. By 1992 by life included everything except the last three (dog, purpose, progress). By that time I was starting to think that the dog maybe wasn't something I really wanted in my life anyway.
2000 -- at age 34, living in California
In the year 2000, a full 15 years since I first made that list, it was still holding up surprisingly well. At age 34 when I thought about the list it still seemed like a good summary of what I was looking for in life. And it was nice to see that year after year I still had almost all the things on the list, just missing out on a couple of those tougher to arrange ones there at the end. At age 34 I also wanted to add a couple things that I realized were pretty tightly linked to my happiness:
continuing to be in good health
a world without poverty or injustice
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