I am thinking about the future lately, a lot. Not in a “I’m going to die soon” kind of way but in a “how am I going to live these Golden Years” way.
I am a person who likes to stay connected with people. Because of this, I talk with someone everyday. I have friends across age and gender groups but as you might guess, most are around my age. I am a talker, ask anyone who knows me. I tend to ask a lot of questions. As I ask my contemporaries questions, I listen to the answers and sometimes the answers or even non-answers make me sad.
We talk about children, empty nests, spouses, retirement plans, and our health and wellness. We talk about change and how oft times it is difficult. I hear from them that they may not be happy with where they live or what they do for a living. How they need to lose weight or exercise more. How they need to spend less and save more. How they can’t retire anytime soon because they don’t (didn’t) have a plan.
Some are not even looking forward to the future. Most are worried about something. That makes me sad. I guess for me it is magnified because I AM looking forward to what’s up ahead.
I have noticed through the years that people can be afraid. They won’t leave jobs, towns or a marriage if they are unhappy. It seems the known unhappiness is better than the unknown change. I don’t know the answer and, of course, each person’s situation is different. But what I do know is finding a way to peace and happiness is a job. It takes hard work and sometimes a step into unknown water. When I was at my deepest despair I wanted someone to make me happy, to do something for me. It took a long time for me to realize that I had to do the work, I had to do something.
If you know me you have heard me quote Albert Einstein, “The definition of crazy is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” Everyday you hear people you know complain about the same things over and over. Perhaps you have given suggestions, options or resources to someone and all you get in response are excuses. It is hard to help those who won’t help themselves. They have settled for less then they want, all because of what?
People hide behind excuses (me too). What’s yours? Wait, I know you are too busy. I bet if I took a poll that would be the number one reason (money is not far behind). How many times a day do you say that, or hear that from someone?
If you don’t like what is happening in your life, change it. No one will do it for you. If you aren’t happy, for goodness sake, do something! Stop making excuses and take action. Anything worth having takes work, including happiness. I know this to be personally true. Someone once said “doing isn’t difficult deciding is.” Don’t let fear stop you from making the decision to change ! Decide to have a joyful life!
“I have learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.”
Well said Nelson, well said.