We live in a society that says if you’re not in action, in motion, making every second count because time is ticking and it’s also money, then you are an absolutely worthless bum. From the time we can walk we are scheduled, pushed, cheered, and shamed into being the best, making America proud, while shutting down our true natures so that we can be outstanding team players. The people who step outside of our go-getter lifestyle are labeled delinquent losers. Their gifts are smiled at with that ever-present look of pity that lingers on the faces of the financially successful.
On the campus of the largest tech company in America sits a single fire station whose sole job it is to scoop up over worked or near-death corporate employees and get them safely to the private corporate hospital that tends to these overworked and near-death employees. Everyday this fire station dispatches medics to treat everything from heart attacks to panic attacks and sometimes even deaths. I remember the year the fire station was built and I have personally picked up an employee from the private corporate hospital. This is no joke. This is corporate America and it dictates that if you’re not shutting down the nagging feeling that you’ve been pushed beyond your limit then you are letting your team, group, department, corporation and your country down.
So, are you choosing a body bag over corporate failure? Are you planning to die at your desk proving your worth instead of playing with your grandkids? Have you given your 20’s, 30’s, 40’s and 50’s to a company believing that this is what your family and your country expect of you? If so, why? Who raised your children? Do you know these people’s names? When’s the last time you laughed until your sides hurt (alcohol free)? When’s the last time you took a meaningful vacation, without an itinerary, that left you feeling deeply rested and refreshed? When’s the last time you took a well day and stayed home and played with your cat? We say we are free but we are slaves dying on the corporate wheel. We are so determined to keep the economic mill of the American economy turning that we miss out on our own lives.
I’m not asking you to quit your job. I’m suggesting to you to find balance between your work and your play. And when I talk about play, I am talking about getting silly over your dog, making cookies with your kids, building blanket forts for your cat (cats love blanket forts). Building a city out of cardboard boxes with windows and doors and watching your kids makeup lives and stories. Watch as they act out what it is to be grownups in a metropolis. This last silly is my favorite silly because in watching my little one and his friends play, I saw through their eyes just how cool being a grownup could be. I watched them meet at the corner café for coffee, I watched them dress up for dinner parties and talk from their cardboard windows to one another, I listen to them sing songs and tell jokes and be so human that it made me remember what it felt like to be fully alive.
It’s okay to listen to your heart when it says, ‘I can’t do more.’ It’s okay to decide to downsize, shift careers, and choose a slower pace of life. It’s okay to have that hard talk with your partner where you reevaluate your life and what you thought you were hoping to achieve. It’s okay to choose a different path, to disappoint your family and coworkers. It’s okay to choose life over a corporate body bag. You have the right to live even if that means that main stream America might dub you a loser. It’s okay to choose loss of career status because you would rather choose yourself. When I lost my role and my place in the world, I put a spin on an old saying and repeated it to myself daily. ‘What if I have lost everything but gained my soul?’ Reassess your life. Deiced what’s really important. Who knows, it may be time to embrace what the economists shake their heads at. It may be time to join me and become a part-time loser. It may be time to hold your kids to your heart and decide you are the one who is raising them.
All my love, all my faith, as your sister I promise the creator has you. LIVE!