Go to school, get a car, get a job, go to college, get married, get a house. Rush, rush, rush.
Does this sound familiar to you? That you feel like you have to do these things in a certain prescribed order from your birth to your death? And that you have to do these things as fast as possible?
Well it does sound familiar to me. The pressure, the advice, the need to go on and plan for college at five, to start driving at sixteen, to just move along and get a life at warp speed. And if you do not do it now now now, if you are not Bill Gates by the time you are thirty, well then you are a failure. Your life has no meaning. At least that is the way that it sometimes feels living it in our modern high-tech society.
Humans live longer then ever before, our life spans are growing by leaps and bounds, but yet everything is prescribed for us for virtually the first half of our lives. And beyond. At least that is what society seems to expect from us.
But speaking as someone who has taken a bit of a slow path to ones life I have experienced both the good and the bad. I have felt inadequate as my class mates were preparing for college and I was sitting there wondering what the point was. I have thought and wondered, and the only conclusion I can come up with maybe one should take the slower path.
Our lives are whirlwind enough without adding any extra pressure to them.
Sure we need jobs, to participate in the economy, to learn and to grow, and to maybe go to college. We need to learn how to be productive members of society. Sure I acknowledge and except the concept. Ask not what your country can do for you but what you can do for your country, saith John Kennedy.
But do we ever sit here and wonder why? Why must these things be done now? And in any particular order?
My life to this point has been both a blessing and a curse, and for this very reason. I have sat here and wondered on the deeper meanings of life and the divine and our place in the modern universe, yet I am not where most of my peers would consider saneness.
But it occurs to me that we are encouraged to rush. From about the time we are five to about the time we are twenty-five, to make all these lightning fast decisions at a blink of an eye. Meanwhile we compile massive debt, massive obligations, and we are told by society that if you do these things you will be a success, and then we get angry when we are not Bill Gates and we do not have that much of a job, or a future all prepared for us.
I have heard the constant complaint that our lives are moving too fast, that we need to slow down and relax and appreciate things. Well is this not the reason?
Why must we go to college at 20? Why not wait until we are at 30, or 40, or even 50? Sure one could die tomorrow but if many of us were to die tomorrow many of us would die without a college education or are just starting one. If we got any job under the sun then we would still die poor.
This is not an invitation to give up, but to say, if by some freak accident you really were to die tomorrow then why not take your time?
Why do we not slow down and consider things more? Instead of rushing through life at warp speed why don’t we look around and actually consider the universe around us? What got us into the position we are in, and what can get us out.
Yes I am very blessed. I can write and bring you these blogs every day and hope someone reads them, notices them and says ‘hey let me give you a job.’ Or that I can practice and then apply myself eventually.
But in realizing this there is not a one step solution for life, not a one size fits all formula. It is messy.
And if you have to flip burgers for a few years, or if you have to work with your Dad in a business, until you can pay your own way, for anything…marriage…house…job…college…why shouldn’t you?
And in the process you might learn some other things.
Again I have no real solutions, but I have advice. Take a break, learn, grow, make some money, make yourself strong and secure in your life before you stat any major project.
And don’t rush.