Photo of me by Aiko Yoshida.
The lament of most adults I know is that life is hard, annoying, and exhausting. I get it. I have been in that space, so I know. Even now I sometimes wish for the 90s when I was a teenager and had little to worry about other than how to get a certain guy, afford a CD I wanted, or how to get people to stop harassing me in school.
But adulting – that’s annoying. Or is it?
Definitely some of it is, but then why are there many happy adults? Why are some people happy and others not? Why are the vast majority just blah and numbing out to reality TV and large pizzas?
It’s because they are not doing what they are passionate about. Either they have forgotten, or they are afraid.
When you are aligned with the work you are meant to do, with the dreams you’ve cultivated deep inside, things magically start shifting.
But you must be taking steps, no matter how minuscule, to go in the direction you’ve always imagined. You must start somewhere. Don’t make me use a cliche!
And for god’s sake take care of your health. Without proper nutrition you are going to have little energy to spare. Do you really want all your energy to be given to A JOB? (a 4-letter work, remember?) What about YOUR work? The work that makes YOU happy and that makes the world better – more beautiful, more interesting, more fun, more fantastic – for you and all the people you could help aim higher?
Life is not meant to be a drudgery. It’s meant to be special – you are no accident. Your desires and dreams are not random. They pester you and haunt you for a reason, and they will continue to until you take action on them. Movement creates momentum, so take that first step, however tiny it may be, and then take another step the next day (or the next hour)! Even if it takes you years of daily steps, you will eventually reach your destination. It will be impossible not to, because you are moving in that direction.
The larger your steps, the quicker you’ll get there, but obstacles will show up. This is normal, in physical journeys, mental ones, artistic ones, financial ones – but inch by inch, penny by penny, stroke by stroke, word by word, you will attain something resembling your desires, but doing absolutely NOTHING gets you NOWHERE except the same place you are today. And are you happy there? Or are you lamenting how being an adult sucks?
When you’re small, you dream of being a grown up, to be able to do whatever you wish – and you CAN. Remember, you have been educated to think otherwise. You’ve been misled, lied to, and led astray by all the things you think you are SUPPOSED to do. You aren’t taught alternatives. You have to discover them yourself. You have to risk, you have to listen to your misery and see what it is teaching you – it is SHOWING you that you are not in tune with your inner voice, the one that has been speaking to you for your whole life, the one you continually ignore, and so other voices overshadow it – the ones that say you’re lame, that you’re no good, that you’re afraid, that you can’t, that you’re lazy and weak.
But what if you fed that other voice? What if you pandered to it? What if you let it scream so it drowns out all the others and sends them scurrying into the black?
That voice will then lead you, but you must LISTEN. That voice is the true you, and it is ageless. Being an adult isn’t hard, life isn’t difficult – what’s difficult is not being who you truly are.