Our world is constantly clamoring for our attention: texts, phone calls, emails, advertisements.
Then the kids want something from us too.
Not to mention our significant other and family and friends.
We can be lost in this morass of stuff, the content of our lives. The demands of living day-to-day can swallow up our attention so much that we don’t know who we are and what we want out of life. By clinging to survival, we do the next thing then the next that will assure we will meet all the demands of life.
There may be some of us who deliberately take the time and get the guidance to plan where we are with our lives and where we want to go. Sometimes it takes a crisis of health or relationship or finances to get to that point.
Otherwise we mindlessly follow through with what we think society demands of us, what our parents want for us, or rebel against all of it. One way of rebelling may be to drop out and get by in the best way we know how. It may be by relying on other people, or secluding ourselves and not needing much.
Most often, I see people following what they think they must do in order to succeed in life.
Work the job, marry the sweetheart, have the kids, provide everything according to the values we hold. It may seem like life is just running on the hamster wheel in order to get to the next day, then the next, then the much needed vacation, then a vacation from the vacation, back again.
By filling our lives with the stuff we think we need to live, we begin to live to serve that stuff. We make the money to pay off the latest technology, keep up with entertainment, advance in the job and give more lavish gifts to the sweetheart. When the stuff of life swallows us up, we may lose sight of our life purpose. We mindlessly fulfill our obligations and may miss the joy in it.
We may then seek extreme sports or vacations to exotic locations or alcohol and recreational drugs because that is where we have glimpsed a more joyful state before and wish to re-create it. Or perhaps it is simply to escape the hamster wheel and feel alive at all that we seek these other outlets.
We have missed the forest for the trees. What we are forgetting is that there is a context to life. There is a space in which all of this is happening, which gives meaning to our lives.
There is a place in everyone which knows how life is meant to be lived.
Too often it is obscured by the content of our lives.
However, it is always nudging us to heed this context as that is where we are most whole. It is the only place we can hope to have health and fulfillment.
Have you sat with the your context of life?
What is it you thoroughly enjoy in life? What do you desire in your life in your work, relationships, friends and family, and for yourself?
Go ahead and list those things.
Now, what is the context in which you enjoy those things?
Please comment below.