Today I finished reading Mark Manson’s book “The Subtle Art Of Not Giving A Fuck”. It deeply moved, inspired and motivated me to have a look at what I’ve done with my life so far and what my desires for future achievements were. In the world we’re living in nowadays whether I’m successful or not is highly debatable – I have graduated 3,5 years ago and am still struggling to find and keep a job. My financial situation is not comfortable and I don’t have a place of my own. I don’t and probably never will own a vehicle. With the combinations of the values I cherish and the dynamics of the way people date nowadays I struggle to find a fulfilling relationship. My chaotic resume confuses employers which don’t seem to understand why a person would change seven countries or switch careers. Most of the time I am far away from my family and the couple of true friends I have, which gets quite hard at times. Mostly all of my possessions fit in a suitcase. Oh, and I haven’t figured life out, not in the least.
However, I feel like I am doing something right. The thing most people rarely think about is that we’ll all die someday, sooner or later. So as chaotic and fucked up our lives may seem we should keep reminding ourselves of that inevitable thing. Which is why each time I have to make a major life decision, regardless of whether it’s reasonable or not I ask myself the following question: “WHEN I’LL BE OLD WILL I BE GLAD I DID THIS?” If the answer is “YES” and this life decision will matter in the long run I know I should do it whether or not it will be horribly hard, whether or not it’s age appropriate, whether or not people might think I’m crazy, whether or not I might fail, which has of course happened many times.
Instead of living by the book of normal, I have decided to live by my book, regardless of the fact that it might be the harder path and that more often than not I’ll feel like a complete social outcast. Each path is filled with an abundance of life questions we inevitably ask ourselves. Here are some of the answers I came across on my path:
NEVER FEEL BAD ABOUT DOING SOMETHING FOR YOURSELF
Most of my jobs throughout the past 3,5 years were freelance jobs with a low income. Yet, every couple of hundreds of euros I’ve earned I spent on travelling. And I never felt bad about spending everything I had for that cause, even though people find spending the little you have on travelling around irresponsible. I find it irresponsible to withdrawal travel from my life because it enriches me in ways no material possessions ever could.
DEDICATE YOURSELF TO ONES YOU CARE ABOUT
Even though we’re caught up in our own stuff most of the time, make sure to make room for the people that matter to you. There are people who spend their free time with others, and there are those who free their time for others. Of course, this excludes responsibilities one simply cannot neglect. But I’ve always tried to be there for people when they needed me and the friendships I have in my life are the most beautiful thing one can wish for.
BE NICE TO PEOPLE
Even if you’ve had a horrible day at work, even though the cashier is rude, even though you don’t feel like being nice to someone with a bad attitude – DO IT. The effect one’s kindness has on other people is really overwhelming. You might not brighten just your own but someone else’s day too.
DON’T BE AFRAID TO SHOW HOW YOU FEEL
OK, so I’m the complete opposite of the relationship guru, actually, my dating history is quite a disaster. However, there is one thing I’m really proud of even if most guys didn’t appreciate it at all – even if it meant embarrassing myself (which most people avoid, and therefore find it easier to take separate ways than take action) I would make sure to show if I cared for someone. Playing games is supposedly the only way to get through the dating jungle alive, but I’d much rather be true to myself, even if it means making a fool of myself.
ACTUALLY DO SOMETHING
Since we’ve got only one shot at this thing called life, instead of wishing your life was different, do everything in your power to make it different. Of course, we can only do what’s in our power, but trust me, that’s also more than a lot. You’ll never know if something works or not if you don’t give it a try.
Try to focus on the things you have in your life rather than on the ones you don’t. It’s a demanding task, but if you have a good look at your life I’m sure you’ll find a lot of things to be happy about.
Regardless of all the photos and videos we take, regardless of the gifts and souvenirs we buy, the most important thing we’ll ever have are memories. Which is exactly why I ask myself the question mentioned earlier – to make sure I’m creating wonderful memories. I most probably won’t remember a day in the office, but the experiences I’ve lived and the people I’ve met through my travels will eternally remain in the colorful photo album of my mind.