The "textbook" Of LifeIt seems like there's some sort of textbook that was written sometime long ago that dictates the optimal conditions for various life experiences. For example:
- Optimal: you should love your job, and you should work to live, not live to work.
Reality: there are a *lot* of people out there who hate their jobs but are stuck in them anyway.
- Optimal: your relationship should be based on mutual give and take, understanding, communication, and compromise. Both partners should be working towards building a happy relationship.
Reality: many relationships contain nothing resembling trust. Many are based on the notion that one person has to give everything and the other can take what they want. Communication is unimportant, and any problems must be dealt with by "reading" the other person. The more time spent apart, the better. When things get hard, give up and find someone else.
It irritates me when people constantly quote the "textbook". They're arguing from a standpoint of what *should* be. I argue from a standpoint of what *is*. I keep thinking of a phrase often mentioned in high school/college physics and chemistry problems: assume ideal conditions. The textbook teaches from the standpoint of ideal conditions. And the concept of happiness in life is all too often defined in terms of ideal conditions.