Keep your chin up, smile, be happy, always think positive thoughts and strive always to do great things. We have all heard and read this throughout our lives; from school to religion to politics, media, books, movies and so on this echoes from generation to generation. And what do we see around us with this message branded into our brains? I am not sure about you but I see more and more people having a harder and harder time coping with life in general as the years pass. Why? Well one obvious reason is stress. However, I think one major source of stress for many people is inside.
Those happy go lucky, sunshine and rainbow statements can be a huge source of stress inside us all. Really?? You bet! Society is always trying to promote a false positive attitude, false heroes and unrealistic life outlooks. Why? Personally I think it is because it keeps people beating themselves up, oppressed in low self worth, pointing fingers of judgment at others, and completely distracted and dissatisfied with life on a whole. This keeps people vulnerable on every level and easier targets for marketing and control.
Are you happy all the time? I sure the hell am not. Are you always thinking positive thoughts? Ha, yea right. Is your life all you ever dreamed it would be? Have you accomplished all those wonderful goals and attained all those wonderful dreams you had when you were younger? Has life opened itself in all its said magnificent ways to set you on a path of smooth travel? No? Well there might be a pretty good reason why it has not yet happened – life does not work like that and society is structured to set people up for failure from the get go.
Those rainbow promoting people and companies want to you to see how easy life can be through their statements and advertisements, but the hard cold fact is that life is anything but easy. Life is difficult, more challenging than anything and is laced with imperfection and pitfalls at every turn. These are just simple facts and yes sometimes facts can suck, but pretending they are otherwise is a waste of time and energy.
Let us look at some facts:
- We will all die – better deal with it now than pretend it will never happen
- All life suffers in this physical universe – it’s just the way it is
- Sometimes no matter how hard we try things just do not go how we want or expect
- Nothing physical lasts forever and things made in China last about a week at best
- The older we get the harder the physical becomes – no matter how much weight you lose or pull-ups you can do
- Our minds tend to be far more determined than our bodies
- We all seek comfort and pleasure
- Life tends to deal out comfort and pleasure in small doses and any pleasure or comfort seemingly given generously in abundance is not very good for us
- Goals never last and when reached are never enough – that is why we create more and more
- Grand dreams rarely come true
- No matter how much work you do in life, it will not last and it will never seem like enough
- Experience is more valuable than any amount of money
Those are just a few of the countless facts of this life that many people just do not want to face. Most people set their lives up to attain goals, grand things and tell everyone they are doing it for the world, for other people. Really? Of course we are told this is the way it should be way back in kindergarten, but is that really how this world works, not from my own perspective and experience. How many people are willing to die for this world? Are you? How many people are willing to give their life for a total stranger? Would you give up your house and everything in it so a poor person could eat for a year?
Facts can be are hard as stone and can hurt the ego just as much as being hit by that stone. Our egos are conditioned to think in ways that just are not factual and this creates a source of internal stress that wears on us day in and day out. It undermines everything we try to do. Most of us strive for things in life for the purpose of pleasure; this includes mental and emotional pleasure. In a world flooded with people and growing in population every year names and deeds drown quickly in that ever rising sea. Once a person could do something “grand” and their name would ride high through history. Today it is not so easy.
We are raised hearing the names of “great people” who did “great deeds” and their names are held high for all to see. We see how those names gain respect and awe in cultures and generations centuries and even thousands or years later. We are told to strive always to do great things. Then as kids we see childhood heroes created in false images of society and they are hiked up high on pedestals for all to admire. But do those heroes do what they do for the good of all people? Not a one. All those heroes gloat in one way or another. They all seek attention, even from their enemies. They start to become that which they are known for. Their ego latches onto an image and the person forgets who they truly are underneath.
People in general do this all the time. We try to be someone, someone unique in a human flooded world. We are taught this when we are young. Many people want to have something left behind when they give up the ghost and leave this world. In that pursuit to fill that hole of seeming in adequacy, not really meaning anything or counting in this life, people try to be something through the ego. Some people actually do something or experience something that seems more than others, but it makes no difference in the great scheme of things. It is all just life and living no matter what level or perspective each of us have.
Most of the time it seems people work and work and work to attain goals and dreams, but when everything is stripped away I find the need for attention to be an underlying reason in just about everyone I know. Attention in an overpopulated world where just about everything we do seems to get drowned out by everything else is a form of pleasure; the pleasure of feeling like we matter, like something we did stood us apart as a unique individual. Much of what people do seem to be trying to prove their worth to others, to a mass that could care less; even to people who we truly do not like and do not like us.
People, we are children who felt the pressure of the social system for as long as we can remember, and therefore forever in our conscious minds. We instinctually and genetically sought out attention because the infant who gets the most attention gets the most care, the most stuff and so on. Ask any baby bird who gets the most of life, the quietest in the corner or the one who strives for attention. This is in our human genetic coding. Just watch babies and you can clearly see. Crying gets attention and attention gives a baby pleasure – food, cuddling, etc.
As we age we subconsciously remember that attention and seek it from various areas of life; some at home, some in public. Then we see how those who stood out got remembered, those who “became something”. Sometimes life cooperates and people get a chance to “become something”, other times life does not cooperate and yet other times life moves in ways that force a person into a “remarkable situation” for which they are remembered, whether they want it or not.
How many of us do many of the things we do because subconsciously, or even consciously, we want to the world and perhaps everyone who ever put us down to see we are worth more, that we deserve more, that we are “better”? I think this fits a great many people. Yes I have absolutely fit this bill many times in my life. The hardships life decided to lay on my path from the time I was born on up through my childhood, adolescence and adulthood; I fought and fought and worked hard at becoming the best I could be at what life choose for me at that time, in-part to prove that I was better and was in control of my life – which I obviously was not. Being very good at what I did gained me attention, mainly from people who controlled me and simply used me as a disposable tool, but that attention surfacely fed that hole created by trauma in childhood. Nevertheless it made me very goal oriented and I banged my head against the tree for years trying to build and create great goals from an energy source that just could not sustain it. Did this bring me true happiness – ah no. It has been part of the programming inside I needed to disassemble.
Because of the extreme hardships, trauma and suffering of my past I sought to balance it with “success” by building something that would turn that suffering into information that perhaps could help others heal in their own lives.
Three things went array:
- I did not have the energy or health to invest in such a long-term commitment and attempted goal, which then set me up for disappointment, frustration and added stress
- Part of me sought attention from the world in hopes of being seen as something “better”, something “more” than a government trained killer, which drove me and my fragile physical energy harder than it could take
- The level of suffering I experienced seemed far more than I could ever feel in love from my childhood teacher and my current family because it plagued my body through daily pain for decades, and so the ego thought being seen in a “better” light by the world might be enough
These are all issues I had to discover and work through over the years of running a business and doing just about everything else in life. Our present stems from our past. Everything we do today can show us who we were, what issues remain from being who we were and how we can transform today through great patience, acceptance, diligence and self appreciation and care.
The attention of the world obviously could never have been enough because the real attention required by any of us is the internal attention, acceptance and love of the self for the self. This goes completely against what we are taught by society as kids.
In society’s eye success is more important than happiness and contentment. This idea is forced down all of our throats from a young age. It creates undue stress inside us. Some follow that path and “succeed”. Some try and fail and break. Some try and realize it is not for them and move off to attaining happiness instead.
It is not what we accomplish in this life that truly matters. It is how we approach each moment. We tend to give too much of a care to things that really do not matter that much, or at all and work only to distract ourselves from the real self inside because we are taught the self does not matter, only the whole. We are all going to die. What we should truly care about and invest our time in is what we discover and create from our truth while we are alive.
These are some great tips:
- Accept we are not perfect and it is impossible and not practical to be positive all the time
- Accept that feeling negative and having bad days or weeks is OK
- Take responsibility for our own life but accept the fact of vulnerability as well
- Choose consciously what to truly care about and push everything else aside
- Accept failure as part of life and let is motive
- Self identity by not accepting titles, positions, cliché social boxes, and imposed identities (they will only create stress of trying to live up to them, remain them as well as limit the self into that little box of illusion)
- Honesty and beneficial relationships – two very powerful energies to happiness and contentment in life
- Accepting the inevitability of giving up the ghost, death, which can make truly living all that much easier and more fulfilling
- Thankfulness to be alive
Here is to wishing you all a very happy Thanksgiving Holiday, or perhaps just a Thanksgiving Holiday of your emotional choosing.