Wherever we land in life, we’re greeted with a list of rules.
A social template for what success should look like. A mainstream system we’re expected to inherit.
And the myth is, if we tick these boxes, we will get ahead and be happy. And, because we’re new and naïve and ambitious and filled to the brim with all that hungry youth juice, we think to ourselves, well, I guess this is what I’m supposed to want, so here we go.
But then, a few months or a few years later, it suddenly dawns on us:
Shit. These things aren’t bringing me joy the way that I thought they were supposed to. What’s wrong with me?
Nothing. There’s nothing wrong with us. We’re simply experiencing the agony of rejecting the socially favored narrative at the moment. The fear of being the nail that sticks out and is hammered down.
When the reality is, just because society demands that we should have an appetite for something, doesn’t mean we should make a bee line to the buffet.
Hell, people have been telling me for the past fifteen years what I’m supposed to be doing with my business. And all I can think to myself is:
Tell me more about the supposing committee. What are you, my brand manager?
Lefsetz was right when he said that if you’re not creating your own rules, you’re not a star, you’re just a figment in someone else’s constellation whose light can be dimmed.
And so, our goal as realized and authentic individuals is find ways to be whole on our own terms. To talk out loud about the rules we create live by. Even if it means facing the tilted heads and shifty eyes of mainstream society.
Mihaly’s research on the evolving self found that people who lead a satisfying life, people whom we would call happy, are generally individuals who have lived their lives according to rules they themselves created. And that the realization that many of our actions are not of our choosing is the first step toward the development of a more authentic, more genuinely individual agenda.
Next time somebody tells you what you’re supposed to want, literally ask them to tell you more about the supposing committee. It’s empowering as hell.
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Are you blindly following a system of rules that puts you at odds with yourself?
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That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Inventor. Filmmaker. Publisher. Songwriter.
Now booking for 2017-2018.
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