If you haven’t watched or listened to Alan Watts, I would recommend that you do.
A thought that spawned this article.
What is it that you spend all night dreaming about? If money were no object – what would you like to do with your life?
I know people, in their early twenties, who have no idea what they want to do with their lives and assume that this means they will one day be a failure. They spend hours a night worrying about this. I know people, in their forties, who have not yet discovered what they want to do with their lives, and assume they ARE a failure. They too lose sleep.
At any age they want the big house, the gorgeous spouse, the sports cars, the money falling out of their pockets never to be picked up from the ground – they want these things assuming that this quantifies success in their life.
But there is a rude awakening for those who do not tear themselves from this kind of thinking. I would rather be a “failure” at twenty, thirty, forty, fifty, sixty and beyond, than be in a job that I don’t like, lying next to a woman I do not love, in a house that is not a home, with friends whom I do not adore.
Because at that point you are revering a kind of thought that should be cast from your mind never to be heard from again. You are reverent, of purposelessness. That idea that while your running forward as fast as you can, your staying still. You’re running on a treadmill and nothing more. You can show someone the numbers, how long and how far you’ve run and they might humour you and move on – but you can’t turn around and show them how far you’ve come.
You can point to your shrinking belly, and tell them you’ve lost an inch on your waistline, but what for? What is the point, if it doesn’t make you happy?
Let’s suppose you enjoy painting, and will lose yourself to that most wonderful state of flow, where you forget that you are hungry, or that you are tired, because these things have ceased to matter to you. They are irrelevant, because you are happy doing that you are doing. You do not need to check your waistline any more. And let’s continue this thought by saying that, you enjoy painting, yet you have found yourself working in a telemarketing company where you cold call all day and night, to the point you are exhausted, so you go home to sleep, to wake up the next day and repeat the process.
You’ve forgot your easel when you walk through the door to the bedroom.
If you change the job title from telemarketer, to investee, to banker, to CEO – what does it matter if you’re paintbrush is never touched? Your paintbrush is purposeless.
You’re often told to put down the paintbrush by someone who points our your flaws, the things you do not have, or the ways in which they deem themselves to be better or more successful than you. But you should never concern yourself with these people. For people who are not happy for you, are most likely not happy for themselves. These people are living these lives, living and working with things and people they do not love, and will continue to do so until they die. These are not the people you want to associate with, or imitate – so it is okay that they disagree with you. In fact it is encouraging.
When you meet someone who tells you your dreams are stupid or a waste of your time, tell them it is better to have a dream than to have stopped dreaming.
If money is your barometer for success, you will always be unsuccessful, for someone will have more money than you. And you will compare to that person, and comparison is the enemy of joy. And so you will cease to be joyful.
To live your life will be a wonderful adventure, you must only commit to it that which comes natural to you. And if you do what you love, although you will face adversity and a harshness you have not yet known – the money will come. You will survive. You will continue to exist in a way that you love, rather than by a measure that you do not.
It’s isn’t difficult, existing. It isn’t rocket science.
Unless that which you are purposeful about, is rocket science.
P.s. The most interesting people I know, didn’t know in their forties what they wanted to do with their lives.
Advice on how to get into that job you love, here:
HOW TO GET A JOB IN THREE EASY STEPS