Such a commonly used phrase! We say it every now and then for things that people may do or say and one kinda protests and says “Get a life man!”
How many of us actually do that? Get a life i.e.?
I met some new friends tonight. Young couple, probably in their late 20′s, married for just a couple of years, no kids yet… living with their parents in a joint family, the guy working in the family business, the lady doing her own thing. Looked happy enough. As the evening unfolded, I discovered that the guy was a highly qualified professional, who gave up what he loved to do, and came in to join the family business, which is not as much his passion, neither did he get a degree in the subject. I was told he gave it up for his family, but you know, he’s not so happy….he misses his old work!
My question is WHY? You also have only one life, right? Why would you give up what you love doing and settle for something you don’t like doing as much? True, a lot of people find a balance, and I am all for finding that balance. But why not give your own self a little bit of priority in the entire scheme of things? And why say you gave up what you loved to do because of your parents, spouse, kids or neighbors? Its just not right!!
My personal belief is that you owe yourself more than you owe others. Its OK to be selfish. You have this one and ONLY ONE life to live. Do things that you really love to do. If you don’t, then take a conscious decision to dedicate it to your parents, spouse or kids and then NEVER talk about not being happy about how your life shaped up after all. No one wants to listen to a person talking about how their entire life was given up for someone who a) is long gone or b) has moved on in life and does not really have time for even a phone call.
To an extent, I would call it not being entirely true to oneself. Agreed, every person has their own circumstances to deal with, what with family responsibilities, kids to bring up, old parents to look after etc etc. However, at the end of the day, you will end up sitting and reflecting on your own life. Suddenly, the focus is on you, everything else becomes peripheral and superfluous. Your thoughts would be “Did I do justice to my time here? Am I completely happy with the way I led my life? Would I change anything if I could go back in time? What all do I regret?”
I don’t know if you notice, but we already ask ourselves these questions now and again. I regret not ever bungy jumping, I really wanted to do that…and sky diving for that matter! I also really wanted to go on a back packing trip in my younger years. I do regret those things, but they are minor in the bigger scheme of how my life turned out after all. I don’t really see myself cribbing about them when I am ancient. I am happy with all that I did with myself, and all my endeavors in making myself a happy person. I know (so far) that I’m not blaming anything on any external factors or people just yet.
I guess the 40′s is when you kind of figure you’re in the middle of your life-span. Maybe this is the time for these thoughts to trigger off. One meets younger people, who so casually assume time to be on their side. Little do they realize it goes by in a flash and before you know it, you’re stuck in a mundane rigmarole of a whirlpool, which sucks out a lot of your ambition and selfish desires, because you let yourself get sucked into it. By the time the waters calm around you, its too late in the day to do what you wanted to. Unless you overcome the whirlpool and take stock of your own self in good time!
Get a life man! Think about where your passion lies, follow it through, and live your life on your own terms. Be selfish but create a balance, nevertheless. When you’re old and ready to pop it, you’ll at least be able to say “I didn’t manage the bungy jump, but I did full justice to this ONE chance I got at living life! ”
Hmmm….maybe I will do that bungy jump after all