Life unlike a synchronous sine wave has variable and numerous phases with much larger deviations from the routine. Our body, though all flesh and bones, is composed of several vital disparate components, each with its own function, interlinked but affected in a different way by external situations. We as an entity are put through several different life phases responsible for altering the buffers from our life and adding high stress levels. These phases often affect us partly i.e. a particular part of us, or at times entirely. Sometimes we may breeze through but other times we may be left incapacitated, physically or/and mentally.
According to a study in 2009…
the world-wide psychiatric ailments ratio was 1:5, that is one in every 5 individual was suffering from some form of mental illness. Based on a prognosis, depression is going to be the second largest disease in the world, by 2020. Though certain mental illnesses are attributed to genetics, major driving factors are often lifestyle related with origins rooted in familial, work specific or social facets.
The replacement of essential life buffers with drastic and overwhelming life patterns is the real source of severe incidence of stress or rather the disruption in the normal life flow. What this means is that, the differentiation of life into two parts, personal and professional or work life, has resulted in this gradual and vast change in our life patterns. The persistent drive to split life into two interconnected yet severely distinct phases is causing this disruption in our lives. What I want to say is, life is just one phase, death being the terminal part of it. You either live or you work your head off. But then comes that moment, be it a catastrophe or just sudden revelation, when you realize the importance of life. Sadly, often it is too late, but it may not be late, there is still time to change, to be what you want to be and explore the possibilities that life holds for you.
The Necessary Steps…
It may require you to do something as drastic as changing the whole career path, but that can only be considered a change if and when that was truly a part of you and what you were doing was in fact ‘you’. If you truly want to change you will have to abandon all past beliefs, thoughts and start anew with your own drive for passion and some faith. And keep worries aside because it is not change, you aren’t changing your life, it is transformation where you are discarding your misunderstanding of what you thought you were and becoming what you are. When you do that, and become what you are, you will realize few but very important life-defining things. Below are a couple of such masked beliefs :
1) The Often Mutated Truth
What is important in life? What is the answer for all? Money. Indeed. That’s what you with all your conscience have been forced and trained to follow, the principle of profit. But, in reality, that has been the root cause for all this discord, imbalance and relentless stress. When people say, “Everything runs by money” , they ignore themselves, the most crucial part of the equation. The world as it is today, is not run by money, it is run by people like you and me, people who are often misguided to lead the path of the chase after materialistic acquisitions. Don’t get me wrong, but money isn’t the solution, it is a means for exchange, only to be used when intended, that’s all what it is. The important part is you and me, the people, the shared ideas, the beliefs and togetherness. That is the secret recipe for the soup of the future.
2) The Real Motivation
Rewards, motivation, incentives, do they all matter? If yes. then why do we, often, spend so much time and effort after something that does not generate any returns. For this we need to get to the real understanding of the, often, earnestly professed term which resembles boundless enthusiasm – ‘passion’. As discussed earlier it is not what is expected, or asked of, it isn’t what is done as an obligation or requirement. Passion is doing what you do, something that defines you, which is your identity and a reflection of who you are.
The Inter-dependencies and Butterfly Effect…
When I couldn’t stay focused and dedicated to my work/studies (which was often), there was always some external force, something apart from what I had in my hands, attracting me more than the work at hand. Typically, one would blame their poor concentration and lack of focus. But that isn’t always so. That is a logical & overlooked repercussion which ensues when there is an imbalance in your work and life. This happens mainly when you are constantly putting so much effort into something that is not in sync with you, which is, in reality, not your passion, you end up being exhausted too fast and too soon. Days effort feels like a weeks labor, at the end you simply crash due to burning out because of something you didn’t want to do in the first place.
The Obvious Questions…
When we are doing something that isn’t interesting and does not sync with us, the elements outside of that domain seem more captivating. Why is that? Because you are doing what you are not supposed to in the first place, as discussed above. And how do we find a solution out of this? You can either change what you are doing, your work, or your career path altogether. And if that is impossible, you can find new ways to approach your current tasks at the same time exploring other avenues, eventually stumbling across your own self.
The Wise Advice…
Just two quotes to sum it all..
“There are thousands and thousands of people out there leading lives of quiet, screaming desperation, where they work long, hard hours at jobs they hate to enable them to buy things they don’t need to impress people they don’t like.”
– Nigel Marsh
“The dogmas of the past are inadequate to the stormy present. the occasion is piled high with difficulty and we must rise high with the occasion. As our case is new so we must think anew and act anew. We must disenthrall ourselves and then we shall save our country.”
– Abraham Lincoln