A collection of rambling thoughts passed through my old, porous brain this afternoon, forming the framework for this posting.
NOTE: Click on images to enlarge. Photographs have been added to serve as visual breaks.
Euphemisms don’t change reality.
It seems that the world around us is getting more and more averse to calling out reality. We talk about ‘misinformation’, ‘parallel realities’ and ‘alternative facts’ when what we really mean is that we are being exposed to a substantive increase of lies.
I suppose being ‘downsized’ sounds more gentle than getting laid off or losing one’s job. Gentle phasing doesn’t lessen the reality of pain and fear about the future. Euphemisms don’t magically change a lie into the truth.
Our expectations of others create our disillusionment.
None of us can control the actions and decisions of other people. At times we allow ourselves to engage in the folly of setting expectations for others… only to be disillusioned when our expectations are not met. Observing, experiencing, and understanding our own selfishness and the selfishness of people around us can help us gain clarity, and rid ourselves of disillusionment.
Accountability encourages growth.
Running away from our own weaknesses and transgressions by claiming to be a victim of our own actions lays bare our most base and vile nature. Holding ourselves accountable for our actions and decisions helps encourage personal growth… and improves society at large.
Fear steals potential.
Creating fear is a tool of manipulators. Fear is used to mask facts, logic and the truth. Fear can also hold us back from reaching our potential. Many of us fear failure. This is often easily defined within a culture as the absence of material possessions, titles, and public recognition. Fear of failure can sometimes cause us to quit before we really even try.
A greater fear is sometimes the fear of success. Regardless of how we individually define success, it is a concept that is more potentially life altering than failure. Success can set higher and permanent performance bars for us. There is an increased level of accountability that comes with success.
We’ve all heard of ‘one hit wonders’ in the music business. How many people are ‘one hit wonders’ in life? It is easier to retreat from success, than to embrace it and to challenge ourselves to grow further.
For our life to change, we must change.
Doing the same thing, the same way we’ve always done it and expecting a different result, is often cited as a definition of insanity. Ultimately each of us bears full responsibility for our life. If we are dissatisfied with our lives… then we must change in order for our lives to improve.
Choices we make create the life we live.
Our lives today are a direct result of the choices we made in the past. And our lives in the future are being created right now by the choices we are making today. Our ability to choose is the greatest power that each of us possesses.
Life is consumed moment by moment.
None of us has a ‘do over’ when it comes to our life. We have one opportunity to live our life to its fullest. To experience all of the wonders that lie ahead of us each day. Life is not lived in pipe dreams or trying to emulate others. It is lived by consuming each and every moment that we have available to us, and appreciating them.
Choose understanding over judgement.
It is easy to pass judgement on others, and even on our own behaviour. It is quite another thing to seek to understand our actions and those of others around us. Understanding leads to an appreciation of others. It allows us to be more compassionate with ourselves.
Being alone with ourselves takes courage.
Our personal journeys of self-discovery can be daunting and challenge us to face the reality of who we are at our core. This can cause the illusions that we have of ourselves to crack and crumble away. What we discover can sometimes cause distress. Getting to our core is the only path we have to self-understanding and self-actualization.
Creating is more important than outcomes.
Humankind has endured through what individual members have created. It could be a nurturing environment for the young. A compassionate approach towards the elderly. It could be building something. Writing and performing music or some other artistic expression. Creating can be done with food. With plants in our gardens. When any of it is done for the pure joy of creating we reach more of our potential and get closer to our authentic selves.
Creating solely for the purpose of gaining wealth or recognition is not a path for self-discovery or understanding. It is simply an exercise in ‘other worth’ where we extinguish our self esteem and self worth.
Everyone will be forgotten.
Regardless of what we do in life, eventually every one of us will be forgotten as people. In rare cases some history of what an individual accomplished may continue on after they have passed. Most of us have already been forgotten by hundreds of people with whom we shared educational experiences in grade school, high school, or at institutions of higher learning.
We’ve been forgotten by countless people who worked at the same companies we did. We’ve been forgotten by past clients. Former team mates. Past romances. The list goes on.
The impact that each of us has while we’re on this spinning orb is very limited both in span and depth. Many of you have been reading this blog for a number of years. If this website ended tomorrow it wouldn’t take long before all of these articles would be forgotten, and all of the personal interactions we have shared here over the years would quickly fade into oblivion. You would simply move on to a different website.
Since everyone will be forgotten then why do some of us care so much about being popular and being accepted by our peers? Why do we allow ourselves to fall prey to fast fading fashions and trends?
What is important are the relationships that we have with people in our lives right now. That is where we can have the most impact, and make the biggest contributions with our lives. Our time here is fleeting as are the memories that people have of us.
After we pass we will be remembered by those people that we have touched on a personal basis. Eventually when they pass… we will be forgotten permanently. That fate awaits every one of us.
Let each of us strive to make a difference to the world around us while we still have the opportunity to do so. A contribution that helps another person, no matter how small and fleeting, is worth the effort.
Photographs were captured handheld using camera gear as noted in the EXIF data. Images were produced using my standard approach in post. Photographs were resized for web use. This is the 1,162 article published on this website since its original inception in 2015.
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