Sunday, March 3, 2013

Should you ever be satisfied?

"At some point you have to choose between life and fiction. The two are very close, but they never actually touch"

Like many of my great writing ideas it most often begins with a discussion amongst a group of people with differing personalities, levels of intellect, morality, or more simply put the few I call friends.  The topic of satisfaction came to play within one of my recent daily bouts. Is it okay to never be satisfied? Is there an appropriate time to just sit back and say okay I've done what I've set out to do I am satisfied. Or should we constantly be in a battle to obtain more, reach for more, strive for greatness beyond what the world says is within our reach? I didn't know exactly how to answer these questions and wasn't even really sure how to initially approach the topic.

As a high school teacher and a person who lives strictly by a series of quotes and lyrics, I was very torn by the black and white capacity of the topic. It seemed to me at the time that there were only two options that would lead to only two outcomes in regards to satisfaction. You're either a person who is never satisfied with life and are always in search of the next success, or you're someone who is easily satisfied and has settled comfortably into their current life status. With the stigmas placed on both of those options I didn't personally know which way I wanted to be categorized. If I chose the first then it meant that I wasn't happy or fulfilled with the life successes I had already obtained in my short 24 years of life. The latter option meant that I was a settler and became comfortable in my own mediocrity. With my only two options being unhappiness or mediocrity I forced myself to push the thought process behind this a bit further.  

I think what it comes down to for me personally is a matter of acceptance and understanding. I fully understand that in society's equation of my life I am merely a list of graduated accomplishments tied down by debt, with underachieving moments factored in, wrapped up tightly into a laughable tax bracket. And that is fine. My societal equation minimally factors into the reality of my reality as I know that I am not simply a list of things that I have done or have not done. That is where the understanding comes in. However my input into my own life comes directly from what I can and can not accept by the time I've reached the end of my timeline. I can not accept that at 24 I've contributed the best of me to the world therefore I do take every opportunity in stride as to not look back ten, fifteen, twenty years from now and say "I wish I had given that a shot". So often we find ourselves becoming observers of everything including our own lives. We get wrapped up in letting life just happen to us that we don't continue to fight and pursue what it is that we desire. We get to a point where we say okay this is it, I've come as far as I can and then we step back years from now only to regret the shots we did not take.

But that does not mean that I am unhappy as my happiness stems from several different facets involved in life. True success can not be skewed to one ideal but is more a holistic sense of completion. I can accept many things including failure and I know that some things will just never happen no matter how hard I try. But in twenty five years if I never accomplished one of my goals but have a track record of continuous efforts and attempts then I will be completely satisfied knowing I tried...

               "He should've been someone everyone knows. Yeah… so what happened?- Life."

1 comment:

  1. I feel like there's a third option that somewhat lies in the middle of both of the other options mentioned. You can indeed reach a point in certain situation where you feel like you're satisfied with what has been achieved BUT I don't feel that means you should then be complacent and throw in the towel. For example, personally I don't want to go back to school, I feel it would be a waste of my time and money. I therefore am satisfied with my level of education. BUT I am not satisfied with my level of intelligence therefore I seek to gain more knowledge in other ways. What i'm saying is the whole point of school is to learn and look good on paper, i'm just through learning in the conventional classroom.