I was talking to a very good friend yesterday, and we were discussing the current culture of people having to find their ‘passion’, their ‘calling’, their one thing that they were born to do and we were struck by how much of weird pressure that is. Is it a generation X thing? a Millenial thing? I’m not sure but it’s certainly quite a modern concept. Previous generations were concerned with living a peaceful and simple life and getting by on the essentials (peace man), then they were focussed on just getting a job, any job, so that they survive , then it was about getting a job so that you could keep up with the Jones’, then getting a job that would pay you obscene amounts amounts money (greed is good!) and now we appear to be in a bit of a backlash where we’re expected to find our one try purpose for being on this planet, but as long as that true purpose pays enough to have a farrow and ball painted front door or pays enough for us to ditch our modern-day shackles and spend the rest of our free time travelling the world, working out of coffee shops.
In principle, this is a lovely idea and certainly speaks of more freedoms and creativity and making life more about just stuff and things but it’s still preaching a certain lifestyle which is, let’s be honest, completely out of reach for most of us. Most of us do still have responsibilities, bills to pay, parents to look after etc etc etc and as much as we would love to follow our hearts and ‘turn our lives around’, it’s just not possible.
The other problem with this idealised notion is that not only does everyone not have the luxury of finding their passion, some people just don’t have a passion, that one true calling, that dream they should follow. For some people, their life is enough, as it is. There are tough days, days when you want to pack it all in , Mondays when you long to live your own life instead of helping rich people get richer but then you rack your brains and read the self-improvement brooks, share the inspirational memes but after all of that, you realise that you might just actually have the life you want. You’re healthy, you have a loving family and / or pets and aside from the odd bad day, your job is paying your bills, you enjoy spending time with your colleagues and your can find joy in the small things.
If you know your passion and are following it, thats brilliant, I’m genuinely pleased for you, but if like some of us, you’re sick of being told that you should be searching your soul and striving for more, know that wherever you are right now, is enough. If you find, in the future, that it isn’t and you want to change that, that’s ok too, but make changes if and when you want to, not when a life-coach / clean-eating guru / lifestyle blogger, who is trying to sell you an imaginary dream, tells you to.
For today, you are enough. Don’t ignore the good moments of the life you have because you’re too focussed on obtaining the life you’re being told you should have.
*this post is for Cat, who I know is reading!*