I had a lovely chat this evening with my best friend Liz. Our hour long conversation as usual delved into the happenings in our lives and then slowly made its way back to our beloved stomping grounds of conversation topics that we’ve all but trampled to a pulp. One day we will learn that the world is the way it is and no matter how many words we wrap our around it. It will only work itself out in its own time. But alas, maybe we just like hearing each other’s voices 🙂
After the call I started thinking about just how much time and effort we (I mean this inclusively) spend worrying about other people. I don’t mean the kind of worry that your Granny has over wanting to make sure you made it home safe or that you’ve had enough to eat even though you’ve somehow managed to down three platefuls already. I’m talking about the kind of worry that has us analyzing the lives of those around us, high on our thrones of condescension. Silently approving or disapproving of how they are choosing to live. Silently judging. Just how much precious personal time do we waste trying to break down every action of other individual’s lives instead of living our own?
I supposed it’s a sort of catch 22. On the one hand there are a great many positive things to be learned from observing the decisions and results of those around us. Learning what’s effective in our lives to help us continue to improve. On the other hand looking so closely at another person’s existence so often only leads to jealousy, anger, and misunderstandings all ultimately leading to making us feel worse about ourselves without even the need to talk to the person we’ve just let ruin our mojo.
I’m completely guilty of this. Too many hours scouring Facebook soaking in the successes and failures of those I know or sometimes have never spoken a word to (why am I friends with them again??). Too many obsessions with blogs portraying only the beauty and light in their lives and keeping the realities that aren’t so picturesque to themselves and leaving me feeling inadequate.
Again the catch 22. I share my life on this blog hoping someone will find joy in reading it. I try my best to keep the negativity out of it or at least share what I’ve learned from it. I believe in the creative outlet of blogging but I also realize just how detrimental it can be to a person’s self esteem. Because at the end of the day it is a presentation that we (meaning us bloggers, or us individuals updating our Facebook with statuses and pictures to show us in the best light) make. It’s a collection of our thoughts and hobbies and personal inspirations. It’s not every moment we live or every emotion we feel. It’s not reality and thus shouldn’t be treated as such.
Again, I am totally guilty of this. Life has a funny way of taking all of our worries and fretting and planning into its hand with a smug smile upon its face, and when we turn around it tosses them to the side and continues on its merry way. Life happens as it happens regardless of our endless worrying.
So I’m challenging myself, and you too if you’re up for it. This weekend I’m going to try to let go of trying to change other people, or trying to be someone else, or trying to strive for things that in the end don’t actually make me happy. I’m going to try to just be me. Be the awkward, kind of nerdy, often simple me. And I’m going to try to let everyone else be the (insert adjective here) person they are. Chances are they are trying to find that self love just the same as I am, and who am I to cause them such worry?
Featured: The MIL’s gorgeous zinnias and a few remaining okra holding on to the last bit of summer