Too often I witness people that are weighed down by life not because of the gravity of the situation they face, but because of the perspective that they stubbornly hold on to. That perspective most often feeds an underlying need that they maintain which is often based on expectations that they have from people around them. As I’ve experienced many times before, expectation is the source of much bitterness.
Life, by design, is a vicious cycle. The only exit is death, but despite this reality being known to any reasonable being, it is the one destination that is most feared and often neglected. We’ve attached a stigma of morbidity to the reality of death even though it is life that deserves it instead. Life is what plagues us every single day, while death only plagues us once. Yet we hold on to life, believing that it is more deserving of indulgence, while ignoring death in which rests our ultimate legacy. However, taking a position on either extreme of this realisation is ill advised because it will leave us wanting.
We are needy by nature. Through a volatile concoction of our needs, our ego, our fears, and not least of all our expectations, we sometimes find ourselves overwhelmed by the lacking sense of fulfilment because that toxic concoction is most often focused on seeking fulfilment from other beings not less feeble than ourselves. Those tainted perspectives are nurtured by our fears which are a result of yet other tainted perspectives relative to a specific life experience. Just as every experience results in joy or pain, every outcome results in an informed learning experience, or a reason to recoil and protect ourselves from a similar situation in future.
But where does it all start? When is the seed sown that gives birth to the bitter tree that roots us in fear rather than an embracing passion? I suspect that the answer to that question is really irrelevant the moment we attain an age of self-awareness. As has been said, the beauty of the brain is the fact that it uses itself to analyse itself. For this reason there is nothing that compels us to suffer from the distorted perspectives that we inherited from the toxic environments in which we may have been raised. Unless there is a desire to achieve more, we will always hold on to less. That desire is based entirely on choices we make, but the choices we make are directly related to our frame of reference that we choose for ourselves.
It sounds complicated, but it really is not. No matter how negatively indoctrinated we may be, we know what makes us feel good versus what makes us feel significant. Unfortunately we seldom take the time to notice the difference. Significance is based on how we are perceived, while feeling good, in simple terms, is based on how we feel about others. If our perspectives are focused on how others feel about us, we will inevitably travel a destructive path that will find us miserable and isolated even if surrounded by a room full of significant others. But, if our perspectives are focused on how we feel about others, we’ll find that we are forced to acknowledge and clarify what we stand for, which in turn will question our points of reference, which in turn will result in an awareness of self and surroundings that would otherwise go unnoticed.
Our tainted perspectives are only inherited as long as we choose not to exercise our ability to be conscious and mindful of who we are and what we stand for. It is an ability, not a gift, nor a learned skill. It is born from a desire to want to know more, to want to be more, and to want to achieve more than the sum of our inheritance. That desire, I believe, is innate the moment we’re born. That is why the baby goes from laying helpless to crawling, to walking, to running, because without being able to effectively communicate, it is already wired to progress rather than to remain stagnant. It is for this simple reason that those of us that hold on to the past, or that resist growth for fear of failure, most often suffer debilitating diseases later in life because our bodies reach a threshold. That threshold is its ability to remain resilient in the face of the unnatural pressures that we subject it to. Eventually, it succumbs, and then we chase about sympathetically looking for cures for these invaders of our bodies, too timid to admit that it is us that our bodies need to be protected from.