From observation and experience, the key to happiness is the opposite to the key to achievement.
Achievement carries unhappiness with it, since you never actually get to the point of contentment. One thing kind of goes with the other.
Contentment, in turn, carries decay, because once you assume that you are good enough, you no longer achieve.
So then, I think we can assume that the key to happiness is to seek contentment and decay, rather than achievement.
Satiety is the enemy of achievement, because satiety makes us content and it makes us stupid as a result.
My mother once said that I would never be rich, because the minute I am good at something, I stop doing it and find something else that I want to be good at. In this way I am always growing, but I am never at the point of contentment. This is very good for your brain, but it is not good for happiness, contentment or decay.
Hence, rather than ‘young people keeping you young’ it is rather that your drive and discontent keeps you young, because it keeps you driven.
I wake up every morning weeping. I go to sleep every night weeping. I despair of the things I have had to compromise, and continue to compromise because of the things I am yet to achieve.
I do not even do this because I want something out of it, but because of what I would like to have seen come out of it.
In the meantime I spend my time on ephemera, because the ephemera contributes more tasks to the list, which will contribute to the finished whole.
You could look on this as time-wasting, or you could look on it as sideways growth in an effort to distract myself from the fact I am forgoing children or happiness because I am too stupid and too stubborn to give up.
Giving up has been the most sensible option for a very long time. It is so depressing that it makes me physically ill, so I can’t do it.
I think before my mother died, I felt that my focus was in a safe space because there was no outlet for my emotional self anyway. Now I think I need to take the brakes off.
You cannot stop, however, in the middle of a war to think sweet thoughts. This piece of work is a war on all sorts of levels, and it isn’t even my war.
I didn’t think it possible to be so besotted that you literally cannot see straight. I think it is probably unusual in the modern age. I am happy, however, to be one of the few people to have experienced it, even if it is personally damaging, futile and very averse to happiness.