Life is no longer just a game,
It’s a frenzied race to the finish line.
A neverending paper chase, if you will. Humans on a perpetual hamster wheel. In search of greener pastures. Better horizons. Light at the end of that tunnel. Take your pick. How much is enough? When does the cup start to look half full? Where do we draw the line between ambition and greed?
Do you know?
I CERTAINLY DON'T
We hustle and we strive, and we put our noses close to the grindstone. So close we forget to look up and around ever so often. And I often wonder to what end. Life has become such a rat race, a form of profound competition wherein we’re prone to (over)compensating our emotional losses with material achievements.
We’ve become the modern definition of slaves. A slave to our deadlines. A slave to our goals. To societal expectations. Money. To a certain lifestyle.
And now, let me put it to you that the harsh reality of things means it requires far more strength to resist the world than to join in the rat race.
MOST PEOPLE DON'T LIVE, THEY MERELY RACE
Striving to reach some goal far away on the horizon. And in the heat of all that racing, they lose sight of the beauty and tranquility around them. By the time they realise this, they’re spent, worn out, exhausted, and it no longer makes any difference whether that goal has been attained or not. The joy and exhilaration of the race is gone. In its place, a void no object can fill.
I’ll be the first to step up and admit I’ve often been guilty of being just another rat in the race. An unquestioning member of that blind-follower group. Not accepting that if there’s to be any hope for me, indeed if I really want to find satisfaction and happiness, I must regard the returns as a secondary consideration, if a consideration at all.
Think about it. We don’t need all that stuff. We just want them. We certainly don’t need to consume like crazy, just because we can. It’s hurting us. Literally. See the correlation between this and the hamster wheel? Going round and round and round. Eventually, we’ll fall off because we’re too exhausted to keep going. Let’s stop before that happens.
Stress, emotional exhaustion, and a reduced sense of personal accomplishment often result in burnout and depression. Doesn’t that sound eerily familiar?
WE CAN AVOID BEING UNHAPPY, DESPERATE. WE CAN.
So here’s the million dollar question. Why do we only get 2 days out of 7 each week to live our lives on our own terms? Why are we only free on the weekend? Like you, I love my weekends and guard them jealously. It’s the only time I don’t have to do anything I don’t want to. I can live my life the way it’s supposed to be lived.
The most important thing to remember is that whether or not, we run, the rat race will always be there. Competition will always exist. And demands will always be made of us. It’s vital that we take ownership of our lives, and lead it in the most holistic fashion possible.
We need to live each day as though it’s the weekend.
WE MUSTN'T LIVE TO WORK. WE WORK TO LIVE.
So here’s what I’m going to do. I’m going to enjoy every second of my life, and I’m going to make sure I know I’m enjoying it while I’m enjoying it. What about you?
p/s photos by Sofia Touassa
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