….Life is easy, why do we make it so hard?- Jon Jondai, a farmer from Northeastern Thailand.
Over the past few weeks I have been watching reactions to so many things on social media that got me thinking? Have we any power left? I mean- do we really have the power to decide our next course of action or not? Are we making any conscious decisions because we decided to do so or our brain is constantly tricked into doing things we wouldn’t choose to do but somehow they bring us some level of happiness and gratification. In the grand scheme of things, are we really happy? Have we any mental space left to make some decisions that we truly believe are our own?
I had months-no years of indulging in what I know were definitely not decisions ultimately made by me. I listened to music I ordinarily wouldn’t listen to. I ate food that I thought was for lack of better words- shit and I had to smile through that because I had to be nice or something like that. I texted people I really do not have the energy to talk to. Speaking to them gives me a headache and hives and unsolicited bad vibes. If they aren’t complaining, they are going on about the trivialities of life-an issue I believe can be fixed with 2 hobbies and a limber love interest. I paid for things I have no use for in my life and I probably gained the 3 kilos I lost earlier from the shitty food I ate. I made friends with complete morons but you know “in the spirit of good cooperation” and a need from God knows where for girlfriends probably taken from the over televising of great female friendships and the likes. I have always had more guy friends than girl friends and I made my peace with that. Why I needed to forge a change in that? I am still not sure why.
You will ask- so if you knew you didn’t want to do all of this, why did you go ahead and do it? Isn’t this what it means to live a lie? Why aren’t you honest with yourself? Trust me, my brain is telling me this was some type of experiment but this is life as we know it. You attend a party you never really wanted to go for, contribute to a wedding of a guy you last saw in P5, go to Sky lounge on Friday night because “networking” is important, watch shows because soon enough Dothraki speakers might be the most sought after human beings on the planet, buy clothes you don’t need because “a girl can’t have too many clothes/ accessories”, create friendships with people that obviously make you retarded, basically, crowding your life space with everything and anything that might propel you into some type of limelight as the person of the year.
But you aren’t person of the year. In fact i am pretty sure only 2 people might know you well enough to write your fantastic biography.
I watched a Tedtalk recently about the things that make people very unhappy. A study was conducted in the States and 1 in 5 people can ably say they are alone and unhappy. They have great jobs, great credit scores, lovely apartments, a crowd of friends and wellwishers, cocktails on Friday, a healthy social media following, they probably have Elon Musk’s number on speed dial, whatever it is you might like, take your pick. But when you actually come down to it it, the unhappiness is because at one point, knowingly or unknowingly, things and people and habits walked into their lives and they woke up one day realising they wanted none of it-and that’s their life now so letting go of life and restrategising is also a tall order and seemingly impossible. So much clutter to go through, it seems like a life long exercise
Who and what owns you? No, really-
Is it the need for social acceptance? The need to be seen as someone probably cooler than Gerald Butler? The need to be the smartest person in the room? I mean, let’s be honest with ourselves- sometimes I really need a funny tweet I took the time in the day to think up to have more than 10 retweets and as much as it’s not a major disappointment in the day, it still registers that at 10am, retweets stopped pouring in for said tweet-that wasn’t nice of the 1032 followers. That! That right there is my problem and I am owning it. It seems silly but much of our lives are now built on the strong foundation of little disappointments that came together and built a base. That’s why a beautiful sunset will pass us by. A thank you receives a quick automated “you’re welcome”. A beautiful song will play and no attention is accorded. A beautiful text comes through and a phone might just be tossed out the window. A gorgeous woman unbeknownst to us walks by and we heave. So while the little disappointments pile up, the little joys get away. Then suddenly, we only want to talk about the small stuff and get petty and get good at it and it becomes a thing- to be petty then every occurrence in our lives just comes to us in the same fashion-then its pettiness everywhere. Petty jobs, small incomes, little knowledge about anything important, low status in reality but oh well- we’re all middle income right? lol the jokes. Things coming full circle et al-started small, still small.
There’s the big picture somewhere that we’re missing and I also keep walking past mine and coming back to look at it once in a while to remind myself of the important things. Is all of this important? Is it necessary? I mean, I have been alive and well before Pizza Hut’s arrival so why am I compelled to throw myself in an anxious wait, counting the days to it’s arrival? Why am I walking out the cinema with a list of movies in my head and release dates that I must watch out for? Why must I fear to speak my English with my accent because one idiot on the internet will have something to say about it? Why is it important that I am not low key sexual, or that my sexuality must be of concern anyway? Whether i look like a fantastic lay or not? Why must we aaaalll be friends? Why must I say yaaaasss like I have recurring spasms whenever I am in agreement to anything? Why must I tone down my opinions because a group of people might kill me in my sleep or come up with words they didn’t know two days ago to describe my kind of condition, my character. Why is it important that every thought in our heads is captured on the internet? Why is the phone so important-I mean between a finger and the phone….I’m sorry finger. Why is someone’s success to be compared-no she isn’t the first, she is the 45th in that area, definitely the 45th-That’s the issue. That’s what’s important?
I’m sure there might be a clear and concise explanation to all of this and this is all well and good. But here is the thing, there has got to be some kind of consequence for living like this say living in debt, with a habit or five, a constant feeling of inadequacy, a basketful of insecurities, disillusionment, having absolutely nothing to show for ourselves. Here we are, with all our entitlement and a little thought at the back of our minds that in case of anything, we know some superheroes a.k.a our parents. Is that what it should be? In your 20s, out of school with no plan-but that back up plan? Who are you?
I’m only writing this because I do not disassociate myself with the world I live in. I am that world too. I am that person too. I wake up and fight those little devils and they get the best of me sometimes and I go to bed and wake up to do it all over again. I know I will get the hang of things. I will live my life as simply as Jon Jondai lives his. I will finally find happiness and fulfilment and i am sure it won’t be because modern society thinks I am happy or knows it for that matter. I will have the power to decide whether to be happy or not and there will be nothing like an exaggerated picture or a well constructed tweet to tell me otherwise.
It all started as a joke. It was never that serious. It was for shits and giggles like someone I know loves to say until I saw the reality that indeed this is who we are, powerless, jumping onto every social trend, unhappy, unfulfilled, broke, broken, fatigued, slaves, mindless and slowly by slowly building a soulless culture with two many grey areas where there was once a fine line that was put there for a good reason.
S0, while we’re on the subject, have you any power left in you?
I hope so.