“Every man is put on earth condemned to die, time and method of execution unknown.” – Rod Serling, The Twilight Zone episode, “The Escape Clause”
It would seem that the concept of having limited time to do everything we want to do in life would make people want to pursue their dreams and wants and desires. But for some reason, from my own experience as well as from my observations of others, most of us are content to just sit around and let life pass us by. If we’re lucky enough to have good fortune, we don’t grab onto it and get all we can, we simply accept that we had a run of good luck and let it go. Then we go back to complaining and doing nothing to try to make our lives what we want it to be. We just go on “living.”
The fact that so many of us have spent time miserably unhappy and did nothing to fix the situation or improve it or get out of it distresses me greatly, and I have been as guilty as anyone in this respect. When I add up the years I wasted, either being miserable or just not being completely happy, it starts to eat up 1/4 of my life.
This is completely unacceptable.
The fact is, as simple as it may sound, there is no need to be unhappy or miserable. I have been happier in the past three months than I was in the past decade because I was extracted from my most recent miseries by the hand of providence. Once I got my head screwed on straight and realized how miserable I had been, I was able to look at my life a lot more objectively than I had before and size things up for myself.
Sometimes we legitimately don’t realize we are miserable. I was in a situation where I was being told daily that I didn’t have any reason for not just being the happiest guy on earth. Never mind the fact that my hair was falling out, I was 80 pounds overweight, I had developed ulcers and migraine headaches and I couldn’t sleep at night. I think I may have been suffering from a type of Stockholm Syndrome, feelings of trust or affection felt in certain cases of kidnapping or hostage-taking by a victim toward a captor. So I tried to make myself feel like I was just an idiot if I felt unhappy at all.
Well, I didn’t just feel unhappy, words could never accurately describe how miserable I truly was. And once I was away from it, and was honest with myself, I had to start asking the hard questions; why would anyone allow themselves to be miserable and unhappy? What does that accomplish for anybody? When you have dreams and wants and aspirations, what is to be accomplished by just sitting on them?
Here I stand today, free of the misery, free of the people who were trying to keep me down and keep me from being happy, and I am able to pursue the opportunities I want, that I have wanted for years but was rarely able to verbalize until now.
However, I am free to pursue the enjoyments of life that are mine to enjoy. I can go where I want, when I want, without having to answer to anyone on this planet. That is a good feeling after seven years of what amounted to a combination of imprisonment, brainwashing and slavery. I have earned all that is before me.
Your time on earth is finite, you don’t have 5,000 years to fix your problems and find your happiness. You don’t have 10,000 years or even 200 years. You have 80 years or less to make your life everything you want it to be. The first 20 of those years are spent growing up. So now you’re down to 60 years. Since I’m 40 that means I have blown over half of my available time, assuming I live to 80. And out of those 40, I was in some level of misery for roughly 12 years. Again, that is totally unacceptable.
So, if you’re reading this, please, for the love of God, if you are in some situation that you are unhappy with, be it work or be it a relationship or be it just your day to day life, do something to change it! There is no excuse on heaven or in earth to not be happy and do everything you can to reach all of your dreams and aspirations.
I know that sometimes it feels hopeless. I know that sometimes we just don’t have the willpower or the mental strength to extricate ourselves from a situation we find ourselves in. I’ve been there. But the feeling of getting away from the unhappiness, and the subsequent improvement in life, both physically and mentally (and even emotionally) is well worth any short-term unhappiness you may suffer from.
I hope this will help someone that needs it, that needs a kick in the pants to either start living, or get out of a bad situation to start attempting to live. Life is too short to waste. There is so much happiness to be had and its there for the taking. Just have the courage to go get it. Or give it your best shot. Sometimes even if you fall short, you at least gave it a try and sometimes the journey is as rewarding as the destination.
In closing, let me try to make you understand that while its never to late to start, the longer you wait, the shorter your happiness will be, and there’s no excuse for that. I would love to have the dozen wasted years of my life back but it doesn’t work that way, so I have to be happy with the 20 or 30 I have ahead of me. And I am, I plan on making the most of them and doing everything I have always wanted to do. It’s just a matter of getting started, and the first step is not only the hardest, but the longest. But you can do it if you set your mind to it and disregard all that’s held you back.
Peace, and God bless.