February 27, 2014
Being fully aware of the number of gutter-minded rocket scientists and professional astronauts (there's a joke there if you think about it) it may be best to explain the title before proceeding. Self lambasting is not some form of self pleasure or something done with a farm animal. Lambaste is, when defined in the simplest terms, very harsh criticism and or inflicting physical and/or mental anguish. Ergo it would stand to reason that this article concerns a look into a critiquing of one's self. Viewer discretion is advised.
It is possible that life can batter a person down to a point that they no longer even bother trying to look up? After suffering so much heartache and torment, with no rest or reprieve, do they finally succumb to what they believe is their inevitable fate? To live out the rest of their existence in complete misery, praying that each day and every breath will be their last. Eventually they’d simply adjust to it wouldn't they? It would not be pleasant but they’d still be alive. Isn't that what's important?
In that context one would have to question whether or not life was truly worth living, if a person never actually got to enjoy living? To spend a literal lifetime trapped in a state of constant misery just for the sake of existing. Never moving forward, because past references are a constant reminder of previous failures that may be relived. If you never try to go up, you won’t have as far to fall. Which you're already convinced will happen due to past experiences. Then maybe it won’t hurt as bad when life kicks you down. Sure you’ll have a boot mark on your back but at least you were spared the impact of the fall.
But is life truly worth living if you never get to actually live? What does that mean exactly, “to actually live?” It means to find purpose, to feel like you're worth something to somebody, even if it’s only yourself. To at least find some amount of pleasure in living out each day regardless of what it may bring. But what if you couldn’t?
What if you never found any joy in your life? Not because it's not there but because you fear letting your guard down enough to even try? What if you find fault in the joyous times because it’s what you're focused on finding?
A quick metaphorical example is picturing your life like an airplane. You know you can trust the pilot because you are the pilot; this is your life after all. Unless you don't trust you or find out you are not the pilot. In that case you have issues far greater than this column's helpful capacity and should perhaps seek professional help. Anyway... You take off trying to maintain a steady course, and achieve an air speed that’s comfortable for you. You reach cruising altitude and are free to move about the cabin or just sit back and enjoy the ride. You could look ahead and see all the interesting sights and places you could go. Maybe just peer out at the passing scenery. This is not what you do. Instead, you will make yourself a nervous wreck by constantly checking your gauges. Looking out for a storm that may come up from behind. The only time you look ahead is to keep a close watch for any obstacles. Constantly braced for potential turbulence. And if things are going smoothly, if the air and course are clear, you will promptly grab up a pick-axe and go to work making irreparable damage to the plane's interior to appease your paranoia. We cannot go through life this way. Not only is it pointless but it is psychologically detrimental.
So how do we find the joy? How do we get past the past so we can pick up and fully move on? How do we learn to just sit back and enjoy the ride and deal with the turbulence of life as it comes? Sadly there is no universal answer or a one size fits all quick fix. The number of solutions varies with each individual and no two are the same. This means it's all up to you because nobody knows you better than you. So find the joy, find your reason to live. You're sure to discover yourself along the way.
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Hope to hear from ya, until then try and stay focused. See ya!