Love, money, laughter, accomplishment, & fame are what we typically think of when we want something pleasurable in our lives. But do they really bring us pleasure? Within all of them lies a way to find temporary or permanent pleasure. With friends, family, commercial television and movies all impressing upon you their views of the life you should want for yourself, you have to ask how do you really measure pleasure?

How Do You Measure Pleasure In Love?

With love, many people measure pleasure through how much the other person does what they like, verses loving the core of who they are. When you love someone because of what they do, you are really trading what they like you to do for what you like them to do. So, when the person you love neatly fits into the role you outlined for them in your mind, you have feelings of love for them. When they step out of that role because they’ve changed, different life circumstances occur or they’ve decided not fulfill that role anymore, we suddenly “fall out of love”. This is conditional love.

When you love a person for who they are as an individual, you are on the road to loving unconditionally. Love is not based on what they do. Your love for them is always present because of who they are. You see the things that they do as expressions of who they are and not as their identity. Love like this lasts a lifetime and can endure the toughest storms of a relationship. And when two people love each other in this way, they want to do things that the person they love would enjoy, because nothing gives them more pleasure than to see the one they love genuinely happy. Unconditional love can create levels of intimacy that blow away anything in the movies or in romance novels. The difference is that it is only possible when you choose to measure pleasure in love through giving of yourself freely to the one you love.

How Do You Measure Pleasure With Money?

With money, many people want to find ways to show off their value, instead of doing things of value. When people want to show value, they are demonstrating the quality or the quantity of the stuff they have. They want to drive the most expensive luxury cars, wear the expensive name brand clothes, and wear jewelry that could be the down payment on a house. But why? After you get the thing you thought showed your value, over time it becomes ordinary. If you bought it to show off to friends, and then another friend gets something even more valuable, how do you feel about what you bought? When you use your money to compare and compete with others, there will always be someone that out shines you. Therefore, you can never be truly happy with what you have, and that happiness is always temporary. You always need more and better quality stuff to keep up with the value you want others to think of you as having.

When people want to do things of value, they think bigger than just themselves. They might choose to invest in an idea that they love, and by doing so create jobs and spend every day doing something they truly enjoy. They may look to help those that need it most through donations, contributing to non-profit organizations, and starting community groups. They may save their money to put their children through college, or to save for a comfortable retirement. Rather than seeking to compare their perceived value with others, they seek to invest in ideas, helping people and worthy causes, or to find true enjoyment in working now so they don’t have to work later. Knowing that you’ve invested your money into ideas, people and in the future makes the thing you contributed to more valuable than the money itself can ever be.

How Do You Measure Pleasure With Laughter?

With laughter, many people think it’s fun to laugh at other people and their problems, verses just having a great time with friends and family. Sarcasm, laughing at someone else’s misfortune, spreading rumors and feeling good because someone else failed are all based in negativity. If these things happened to you, there is a good chance that you wouldn’t find humor in them. It’s because we view others as separate from ourselves that we feel better when they do poorly; in that moment we feel like we are better off than they are. In truth, putting down other people for any reason is squarely based in insecurity. We lift ourselves up by pushing others down when we engage in this type of “fun”.

When you measure pleasure with laughter by having a good time with friends and family, the time is based on lifting each other up. This type of fun is at the expense of no one. Everyone can partake and everyone can enjoy. All parties involved walk away feeling good about the time they had and about themselves. It’s not about alcohol, drugs or negativity. It’s about light-heartedness, fond memories and imagination. This type of laughter is based in love. It is shared consistently with quality friends and close family. We lift ourselves up by lifting the spirits of everyone we are with, and vise versa. It’s innocent, it’s fun, and it’s memories are ever lasting.

How Do You Measure Pleasure Through Accomplishment?

With accomplishment, do you want to be the best, or do you want to be the best you can be? There is a difference between the two. When you want to be the best, you have to compare yourself to others and judge how one is better or worse than the other. Your focus is more on assessing what others do better than you so you can figure out how to win. When you win, they lose. Winning is of the highest value when being the best is the drive behind accomplishment. When someone else comes along that is better, you feel defeated, even if you’ve accomplished a great deal. Everything you do is compared to someone else, and your ranking against them gives you your value.

When you measure pleasure by always seeking to be the best you can be, you never stop learning. It’s not about how good you are compared to someone else, but how much you’ve grown within yourself compared to yesterday, last month or last year. Your focus is on assessing your own pool of skills and talents, improving the ones that require development, and continuing to grow those that are highly tuned. When someone else comes along that is better, you watch and learn from them. Rather than competing, you ask questions. And if you find yourself the best at what you do through this process, you choose to help others to develop and become the best they can be as well. One of the greatest pleasures in life is teaching or coaching someone that goes on to surpass your skill level! For the person that strives to be the best they can be, it’s a dream come true to help another be the best they can be.

How Do You Measure Pleasure Through Fame?

With fame, is the number of people that know you important, or is it the number of people you inspire? When you derive a sense of worth through how many people know you, think highly of you or think you are cool, you are putting the foundation of your self esteem in other people’s hands. Your reputation lives in other people’s minds. If they choose to see you differently and you are no longer popular, you no longer hold that cool job title, or you otherwise lose the things that others valued you for, then your self-esteem takes a beating. If you thought you were great when others thought you were great, how will you see yourself when others no longer see you as great?

When you measure pleasure by being an inspiring, it’s more about doing the thing that you have a passion for than about other people’s thoughts about you. When you dedicate yourself to a purpose you have a passion for, you can’t help but to inspire those around you. Without focusing on it at all, other people look towards you as an example for themselves to follow. Your attention to your passion helps them find and focus on their passion. It is not about being famous for fame’s sake to feed an ego. It’s about doing the thing you love to do most in the world with all of the love, dedication and sincerity you can muster. Those who inspire tend to shy away from fame and the belief that they are somehow better than others. If fame finds these individuals, it does so all on its own.

Measuring pleasure comes down to fear and love. When you measure pleasure through fear, you must compare to and tear down others in order to feel good yourself. Fear robs you of self -esteem and allows you to give the power of yourself over to others. When you measure pleasure through love, you build people up while building up yourself. You fortify your self-esteem, making bulletproof, and inspire others because of it. You aspire to ever increasing heights within yourself and have the courage to love unconditionally.

Author's Bio: 

James LeGrand is the Author of "Evolve!", an Amazon.com best seller in Religion and Spirituality. He is also the publisher of http://www.SpiritualIndividual.com, a free weekly newsletter that presents solutions to life’s issues through the lens of self-help, wisdom, philosophy and spirituality. In addition, James LeGrand is a Life Strategist, an Expert Author with SelfGrowth.com & EzineArticles.com, a former Radio Personality, a Fortune 500 Vice President, and a Sifu in Shaolin Kungfu, which has been known for centuries as a pathway to spiritual enlightenment.