Sometimes, merely surviving is an achievement in itself. Getting up. Washing up. Having something to eat. Trying to not break down. Not feeling guilty about being out of shape emotionally, psychologically, or physically. Merely existing. Even that’s a lot to some people.
We should all have more compassion towards people who are going through a hard emotional state. We should all have more compassion to ourselves — when we end up in the same place.
It might seem that everyone has got it together but you. And so you spend an enormous amount of energy pretending that you too, have it all together. You build an elaborate persona online. You meticulously polish your bio. You give advice. You smile when you want to cry. Other people see that and think, “Man, that dude has it all figured out.”
Only you don’t. And neither does anyone else. By pretending, we only exacerbate the problem for ourselves and everyone else. If only we could accept our limitations. If only we would allow ourselves to be more human and to simply more be.
It might seem like you can do everything. Your Twitter feed tells you: “Anything is possible if you set your mind to it.” But sometimes, the mind is so exhausted, it doesn’t want to be set. Or it can’t.
Then again, not everything is possible. You can’t breathe in outer space. You can’t run 500 miles. Similarly, you can’t always be productive, in a good mood, and energized. We’re only human — and that, first and foremost, means we have limitations.
Hardcore discipline and 4 AM alarm clocks don’t magically erase our limitations. They only conceal them. Until we burst, leaving nothing but what was there in the first place: our humanity. Vulnerability. Ourselves.
I know it’s hard to accept. It’s painful to acknowledge how little we have control over and how little we can actually accomplish, at least in comparison to what our ambitious minds want to.
But on the other side of the pain of acceptance of our humanity is liberation. There’s a peaceful realization that the point of life, actually, is to just live. Be. Do nothing. Witness the world. Love. Breathe.
And merely survive.