Achieving your goals is important. But so is living your life.Freepik
et’s just put it out there - we live in the age of hyperactive goal setting.
These days it’s difficult to open a new tab in your browser without a ridiculously ripped Youtube coach throwing soft insults your way. No matter the particular strategy of persuasion, the message is always the same - you’ve got to make it. You’ve got to become more ambitious, you have to work harder, you’ve got to move faster.
All these commandments aren’t abstract ideals, they’re clear-cut instructions. Success is defined in simple metrics - you’ve got to do better today than you did yesterday, and everything you do should be measured carefully.
In other words, the goals you’ve set for yourself aren’t distant lights guiding you through the dark - they’re baseball cards that you need to collect at all costs... because only people who have renounced living a proper life leave their albums partially unfilled.
As a culture we have thoroughly internalised this strategy, this idea that reaching your goals is the one true portal to a contented life.
But what’s always been incredibly strange to me, is the pervasive lack of scepticism surrounding this mode of being. Ever since I was a young lad, I remember being unsettled by the obvious link between people who were championed as the paragons of success and mental distress they were experiencing... and even more by society's convenient ignorance of this connection.
How come so many of these rich, famous people, people who’ve achieved their wildest dreams suffer so violently? Why do they commit suicide so often, and how come their tragic fate keeps getting individualised and framed as a personal weakness? And most of all, why is their demise always separated from the culture that spawned it?
I couldn’t quite put my finger on it, but I always had a hunch that the fact that we're putting all of our energies into chasing our dreams in such a strenuous manner must have something to do with it all.
Not too long ago I listened to a famous philosopher expounding on the nature of goals. He concluded the interview with a provocative thought that left a jarring impression on me; he said we have a perfectly good name for dreams that have become realised - they’re called nightmares.
I was slightly taken aback at first, but also couldn’t quite shake the feeling that there was a deep truth hidden in that sentence. Just try to imagine accomplishing everything you’ve set out to do - your entire existence you’ve been told that upon reaching your goals, all the missing pieces of your life will fall into place.
And yet they don’t.
Because you’re still you. And not only that - all that drive that was propelling you forward has suddenly given way to a big, black, gaping hole. What the fuck are you suppose to do next?
Of course you could repeat the whole cycle again (and again), but my guess is the entire endeavour would just appear more and more pointless...
Now, don’t get me wrong - I’m not saying you shouldn't cultivate a grand vision for your future life. You absolutely should. Goals give you direction, they provide structure, they release you from the torture of the mindless onslaught of everyday existence.
I’ve got my own set of goals and I’m pressing them tightly against my hairy chest every day.
One of those goals is related to the successful spread of this blog. Week by week, I’m working consciously and consistently to reach that finish line.
But I also realise that if I ever do manage to reach a wider audience and become a professional blogger, a little something of what makes all of this so unique and special will undoubtedly disappear.
Because what’s really crucial, what I have to keep reminding myself of constantly, is that these moments right here and now are the best part of it all.
So yeah... having a map for your journey is important. But so is looking up from time to time.
You might miss the sunset otherwise.
Hey there, ya sexy anxious wanderer.
Creating this blog has been one of the most rewarding decisions I’ve made in the past year - the possibility of having an outlet through which I can share my worries, ideas and suggestions has had an invaluable impact on the way I feel, and has kept me sane at times I would’ve otherwise gone berserk.
With the negligible commitment of just a few months of semi-regular posting, this blog has become a well ranked and well read site, creating endless opportunity for further growth, which makes me really happy.
And then there’s the unexpected perk of suddenly belonging to an amazingly supportive community of bloggers, writers and readers, the interaction and friendship with people from all over the world, that would have never happened if I chose to remain idle instead.
But the absolute best thing about taking the step towards having digital autonomy, is the possibility of this seemingly insignificant decision suddenly taking you places you simply haven’t imagined before, of rediscovering a sense of adventure you thought you buried long ago.
So, whatever your level of commitment, I warmly recommend that you create your own website.
Now, if you’re an apprehensive sceptic (like I am), you probably won’t wanna spend a fortune on your little digital sanctuary.
And that’s where Bluehost comes into play.
These guys let you register your domain AND host your site for a ridiculous $3.95/month (don’t forget to untick all the additional options!), which is what I did…. and had zero complaints ever since.
To top it off their customer support is off the hook - it’s freakishly responsive and respectful, even if you’re bothering them with complete basic shite like I was (like, all the time).
To be honest, I can't really talk about other providers, as Bluehost is the only hosting service I've ever really used, but I can say that I have no intention of changing my plan anytime soon and that I’m extremely extremely happy with how my site is running. So do give them a nudge while this absurd offer still stands!
at least until the cold rears its ugly head again, Berlin is turning itself into a series of endless open air festivals and parties.Our little hangout reflects this festive mood, at least on the outside. If you were just a random person walking by, you would have seen two mates comfortably sharing a bottle, drinking out of paper cups, chatting away and laughing. It would all look like an uplifting scene from a European indie film.
The truth however, is different. Laurie is my friend, yes, and what’s coming out of my mouth is real laughter, but the unpleasant feeling bouncing around my skull is one of deep discomfort. The truth is I’d rather be anywhere else right now. It’s not that anything bad happened between the two of us, like a pissing contest’s gone sour just moments ago… I’ve known Laurie for almost 5 years and during that time we’ve never even had as much as a disagreement.
at least until the cold rears its ugly head again, Berlin is turning itself into a series of endless open air festivals and parties.
Our little hangout reflects this festive mood, at least on the outside.
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