Life can be more fun. It can be fulfilling, it can have any meaning you want it to; it can be anything you want it to. You could be the good kind of tired. It can also be a disaster, it can be so terribly boring, so utterly hopeless and pointless if you want it to. You can easily make it to a midlife crisis that ends with a rigid realization that you have wasted your life, your money and your youth on nothing. See you can have it all, you already are working towards what you want daily, whether you see it or not. I want to help you see it, because I’m practicing what I preach and because I care about the 40 year old you.
Consider this the hands-on preacher pitch, from somebody who gives a damn. Too aggressive? well, why not if you are still reading, it means something deep down in you is curious enough to save 40 year old you from despair. Or, you might actually have a sense of humor, one that gets sarcastic baits off the bat.
The Important Questions
The first and foremost set of questions to ask ourselves right now as we read are:
Do I complain? Why do I complain? Do I do it consciously? Do i feel better after I have complained to the person of my choice? Does my complaining ever lead to action? Do I feel better because complaining makes me feel like I am actually doing something about my problems?
The questions can definitely get longer and more complex, but I will release you there.
Complaining and whining about our problems is a national epidemic, one that we have been conditioned to since infancy, most of us grew up to singers complaining, actors complaining, parents complaining, and politicians complaining. Few people took action, complaining led to distraction, which led to corruption. We were always one step behind. Why? You guessed it, because we were complaining.
Lebanon, yes I am looking at you. The complaining disease is so deeply rooted in our brains that we have become incapable of perceiving solutions in any other form. Complaining became a cry for help, an embodiment of helplessness, greed and self-defeatist victim hood.
But this is not about Lebanon, this is about you, and the life you deserve and how you can get it. The Lebanon example is a nod of respect to every person still managing to live in the system untainted. This is a virtual gold star I am placing on your forehead right now. I get it. The general environment is difficult, it is almost impossible, but I insist that it can be better for you at least.
How do we take our lives back?
We start with the only things we can control, our selves, our thoughts, our attitudes.
The most important habit to drop, and people are preaching this everywhere:
Train yourself to stop complaining, and start doing something, anything about your problem. This needs taking responsibility, releasing yourself from the “I cant” captivity.
Talking about a problem with an action based attitude is optimal. Try to simplify it as such:
- What is my problem? (choose one)
- How does it make me feel?
- Will time take care of it? If yes, great don’t talk about it anymore and be patient.
- If no, Can I conjure actionable steps to solve it? If yes, then do that.
- If no, and the problem is absolutely beyond your control (few are – such as mortality) then you must practice letting go; taking the next best action plan.
Once we learn to size up our problems, we gain better perspective about how to go about something. One problem no longer takes over your life, it becomes an item on your agenda. No life is easy, even if we mistakenly perceive other people’s as walks in the park.
45 year old you will still be young enough to take on life any way it presents itself. Do not mistake age with wisdom or achievement as though growing years take care of all the hard stuff. Nothing and no body will take care of the hard stuff but you. So do yourself a favor, one that will put your entire living experience on a different track and practice RCA “Reduced Complaining Attitude” -I just made that up- for a day, a week, a month and on. See what happens. You will find that there is a lot of empty space in your conversations, ones that could be filled with jokes, activities and higher quality issues. You will find that people suddenly want to be around you more. You will find that sitting in the control deck of life is the best kept secret of every person you have ever admired. Enjoy it all, and take it in, do something about it if you can, and then let go when necessary.
Imagine who you could develop into a year from now, 10 years from now and beyond that? Who would you surround yourself with? What would you be doing? Nothing will be the same if you take back your life.
Think about it…