I was moved today by this article http://elitedaily.com/life/greatest-moments-clarity-life-realizing-things-didnt-work-youre-better/773523/ – and it’s true each of those points are present and screaming in my life right now, and they have been a slow but steady realization over the past 4 years.
However, the overarching idea that the article didn’t mention: the main reason why people feel that they need to be absolutely perfect, and have everything they want, when they want it without disappointment. It’s a combination of many things, a false notion of success, and thereby happiness, and this idea that disappointment is a lifetime failure. Society has a way of making people feel like shit, in the nicest and kindest way ever.
It’s as though, if you’re not driving an Audi, own three homes, or make six figures, you’re somehow not successful. Or if you’re not surrounded by a lot of people, you’re not popular or ‘liked.’ Or if you’re not with the love of your life, married with kids, you’re not important, worthy or valued (single people get crap all the time). Or lining up to own the new iWhatever, personally I could care less about how fashionable my phone is at the moment. My phone is hundreds of years old, and I’m really proud of it. Or the best part, that grieving has an expiry date, and that you should somehow, “move on already,” when people think it’s time. Society doesn’t allow people to grieve, to take time to heal emotionally. And that’s sad. Because if more people were afforded more time to heal, we may not have as many cases of long-term depression.
Our society has placed a ridiculous amount of pressure on people to achieve material things, and obtain the most outrageous and most unrealistic goals. And the craze that we’re in right now is a symptom of it. Our society says, ‘be an individual and do whatever you desire’ – but refuses to allow people to be individuals the way they want to define and achieve it, primarily allowing failure to be an important part of that journey. And no matter how much you try and create your own adventure, it seems as though those adventures are defined by other people. The only way to combat it is to ignore what society deems as important.
Example: The majority of the women exactly my age, my peers, actually aren’t getting married and having kids. They’re actually DOING things to build their career. One is producing an independent film in Hollywood and another is working for NATO in Europe. They are creating their happiness, prioritizing what they feel is important right now. And I completely LOVE that. Women have the right to create their own destiny, without the comments from “people.”
A side note: It’s those “people” who aren’t your friends.
And yes, you can measure success in terms of a dollar value, but others value success by how happy they are, how at peace they are, others by what they create or how they can positively affect others. There are a million and one ways to be happy, and frankly it’s nobody’s business how we arrive there.
In my opinion, it’s not important to be perfect, but it’s important to be well-balanced. Live the life you choose to lead by the measures and criteria that you can sustain and uphold. Fail, be proud and take the time and define your own success, happiness and destiny.