For the longest time, I always dreamed of a painless existence… you know, where things just worked, nothing was a stress, I had a core group of friends who I’d see every all the time and we’d have wacky adventures and experiences. You know, that TV land fantasy of life where no problem, no matter how insurmountable was always solved to completion within 30 minutes and had no real lasting consequences. Everyone basically went back to normal.
Of course, this is not how the real world works… life is not painless. Every minute of every day is fraught with decisions to be made, things to do and places to be.
Think about it… do you reckon the characters on Friends could afford that apartment on their wages? Do you think Barney Stinson wouldn’t have been slapped with a ton of sexual harassment / rape accusations? Do you think your Mum cooks what is essentially a continental breakfast every morning, just for you to have a piece of toast, a sip of coffee as you run out the door?
That life would be exhausting.
Sure when you’re young you would think its awesome… you have your crew, your squad, your wolfpack, your bro’s, your ho’s… but something you learn as you get older…
The destination is irrelevant, its the journey you take to get there.
I mean, sure who doesn’t want the six figure salary, corner office and cool job title straight out of school? Who doesn’t want the cool car that everyone is envious of? Who doesn’t want the large house which can stage the parties to end all parties, filled with supermodels and celebrities…
Sounds like a pretty pain free existence if you have all that doesn’t it? I mean… your life is PERFECT!!!
Well from the outside looking in, it might seem that way…
To earn that six figures, you have to work over 70 hours a week, in that corner office that feels like a prison cell, because you are the Manager of Outbound Customer Relations (you know… a Call Centre Manager)… which means you dont really spend much time in that super awesome house and you’re too tired to party, even though your partner, who quit their job to become a social media influencer wants to drag you out to some third rate dive bar that someone higher up on the totem pole described as “totes awesome”.
This is what is meant by “Life is Pain”.
Ask yourself honestly what you want from life? I mean HONESTLY… not just money, looks, and success… actually think about it, what is your definition of success?
Then ask yourself what you are willing to endure in order to achieve it.
You wanna rock some six pack abs? Hit the gym… its not gonna happen overnight… its gonna take time, dedication and a willingness to accept the pain of having to endure all that.
After listening to Mark Manson’s book… as I was driving between my old house and our new house… I thought to myself… what is it that I actually want? I mean, sure I would love nothing more than to just have this cruisy existence where everything just falls into place and good things happen… but not in the real world and definitely not to me.
So I thought about it… I want to be a top notch rescue operator. I used to wanna lead the team of rescue operators, but I realised I’d be happy to just be on the team. This was my thing, at work, at home, everywhere… I wanted to be the guy in charge. I was skilled, I was competent, I was able, I was good at it… but no one wanted to recognise it. So now, Im happy to just be on the team rather than gunning to be in charge of it.
Whats it gonna take for me to do this?
- Have to get my fitness up. I want to pass the Arduous Pack Test.
- Have to dedicate time to training in rescue skills.
- Have to work on my communication skills. (Im as subtle as a sledgehammer sometimes).
- Have to work on trusting other peoples skills more readily.
- Have to get my Heavy Rigid Truck license (only need medium but hey.. go for the top).
I have to fit all of this around my normal day job, as well as something else that is incredibly important to me… Home Life.
I was one of those people who sacrificed everything because I wanted to get ahead. I wanted to be “the man”. I wanted to get on top because everything would be easier then. I wanted the large pay packet, I wanted the cool job. I wanted it all… but what was happening was that I was putting material success ahead of emotional success. I realised that what I cared about most was waiting for me at home. What was the point of shooting for the moon, when I would be happy just watching it from the top of the hill… with her. I was neglecting my loved ones because I was too focussed on the impossible dream.
The pain this caused was that I really no longer care to be “that guy” at work anymore. I gave my all for the team, got me nowhere, gave me nothing but stress and bad moods. I was actually happiest when I got home and saw my wife.
I no longer compare myself to those in the position I wanted to be in, quite frankly I dont need the stress. Letting go has meant that I no longer feel the pressure of trying to outperform, outfox, or even buy into the political bullshit anymore.
Net result… I no longer give a fuck about the things I dont need to give a fuck about. I only give a fuck about those things that Im prepared to endure the pain and sacrifice to achieve… and should I get there… the next challenge after that.
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