Are we happy yet?
Well, are we??
What’s missing from our American lives… what’s missing from our personal & emotional needs, what’s missing from our dream of the perfect life?
Oh, that… the “perfect life…” do you remember who promised you that? Neither do I. And, I think, that’s a great place to start this week. The concept of a perfect life, and your concept of it. For we all want it, have strived for it, from time to time, and then have accepted “good enough.” Well, maybe not… maybe we still strive, but what then, realistically, are our ultimate hopes? Deep doo doo, right? Of course. That’s why we’re here together, trying to ferret these ideas/hopes/dreams out.
I attempt to share my thoughts with you about this because I’m older… at least by American standards… because I’ve bumped into these thoughts, these concepts, and have had to deal with them. Not everyone does deal with them… but they are a doorway to growth, and to not embrace constant growth is to wither, and die. Look around at your old people, the ones who continue to inspire – and they’re out there – and you’ll see what I mean. The ninety year-old woman who continues to work at the health center, and inspire those 60 years younger than she… don’t tell me there’s a limit to what we can do, to what we can accomplish, to how far we can take our personal dreams……. don’t tell me that. We have so many inspirations to the contrary. Can we not draw on a few of those inspirations? Can we not, ultimately, become an inspiration ourselves?
That answer is no. It’s no, if that’s not part of our motivation in this life. We didn’t sign up to be an inspiration for others. Hell no. We’re trying to survive in a hostile world. Why don’t the wealthy and the otherwise well-endowed be an inspiration, for christ’s sake? Why is everything dumped on the little guy???
Well. there’s a concept in itself. “the little guy.” You all related to that for a second, right? Sure, so do I. But it’s not true. There are no little guys, only “perceived” little guys. To buy into the little guy concept is to demean ourselves and think of ourselves as victims. No no no no. We’re none of those things, unless we think we are. Yes… when did we stop thinking big? When did we stop thinking pride? When did we stop thinking that other/smarter/better/richer/ people on this planet slowly took over our lives, our pride, our very reason for being? When did that happen, and how in hell did it happen at all?
Jump back a paragraph with me. The answer doesn’t have to be no. Uh uh. Doesn’t have to be. It’s not easy, oh god knows it’s not easy, but… if we all were able to do what we REALLY love, really are passionate about, really good at, then we could, and would, become an inspiration for others. You get this… it’s because when we’re doing something we REALLY love, we get damn good at it, and our quantity consciousness turns into quality consciousness. Pretty soon, we’re touching people we’ve never met with our love of what we do, with our passion for what we do, for let me tell you… when your heart and soul is in your work, you almost don’t need to market it. You do, to a point, of course, and it’s wise to get help… but your work will speak to the outside world, because passion, commitment and consistency of quality will rise to the top… every single time.
But again, I digress. The original point was, (help me now…) our perception of our perfect life. I would like to suggest something here. I would like for you to consider how beautiful your life already is, how nearly complete it is, and suggest to you that, rather than trying to add the magic ingredients to your, and your loved ones’ lives, that you simply pull back on your ultimate dreams, consider for a moment that your life IS now an ultimate dream, and in that, appreciate and be grateful for what you have at this very moment. Hey y’all, we live in a yin/yang world. There is no “perfection” here. Ask Bernie Madoff, ask Muhammad Ali, ask LeBron James or Connie Chung… anyone whom you aspire to be like. Ask them if it’s a perfect world… you already know the answer. And so, to make your world more perfect, more complete, simplify. That’s right. Simplify. Does that mean “settle for less?” Yes, yes it does. For those of you who are on a mission to have all the toys, all the stuff, all the influence and all the social status that comes with the perceived notion of the American Success… YES!! Yes. I’m suggesting that you will find quicker, deeper, more lasting happiness, peace and contentment with “settling for less.” Jesus. You people are driven, aren’t you?
For the rest of us, who are just now getting over the concept of being “little people,” it’s not a stretch at all. Hell, appreciating what we already have is not a problem. Loving whom we’re with and appreciating them every day and every night is not a problem. Loving and appreciating our families and extended families, and the support we share with them, is not a problem. Eating well, drinking well, living and loving well is a supreme blessing we simply must not look past.
it’s so easy to have it all, if we appreciate what we have already, and strive to be the best we can be for our loved ones. Is that not a dream for a fulfilled life? Are we not already fulfilling it? It’s simply a matter of perception, Ollie. We ARE if we THINK we are… it’s a matter of letting your perception be your reality. I know, I do it all the time. My perception is that I feel like Sean Connery, therefore I must look like him, too. And that’s my reality… at least until I walk past a mirror. The trick then, is to keep walking.
Keep walking. Just keep the legs and feet moving. That’s right. Could be the new secret of life, of a happy life. Keep walking when you walk by that car or boat dealership. ( Well, except for you, Tom… you obviously made a good stop at a boat shop… ;^) Keep walking when you’re cruising by that huge Victorian over on 10th that is for sale. Keep walking past the electronics store, past the furniture department… just keep walking. The only thing you might slow down for is an occasional travel agency or a camping and outdoor supply store. And when you approach a mirror or any kind of reflecting window… keep walking, my friend. You’ll thank me for it later.
examples of quality consciousness –
Jack Waller Tree Art – a dear friend of mine
Lisa Capehart – another dear friend of mine
Michael Colemire – a good friend, does wonderful art