“I want to exercise more, but I can’t seem to find the time. Life keeps getting in the way.”
“I get together with my old friends once a year. I miss the days when I had great community and friends in my life, but life makes it really hard.”
“I know I should sleep more. Ugh, life is so busy.”
“I’d really like to move into work I love to do, but life takes priority right now, you know what I mean?”
Not exactly. What’s this “life” you speak of? Can you hold it in your hands? What color is it? What does it smell like? What does it sound like? How does it feel on your skin? Can you show it to me?
It’s a construct you’ve made up, that many people have collectively made up and you’ve agreed to. It’s no more real than Santa Claus or the Easter Bunny. It’s not a very benevolent construct. Its primary role is to tell you what you can’t do. Specifically, it tells you that you can’t do the things you want to do because it’s the priority.
Is “life” really a thing? Does a person show up at your home in the morning wearing a Patriots jersey with the name “Life” on the back above the number 44? Does this person handcuff you and drag you to a job you hate? Does this person make you live where you live? Does this person crush your desires and intentions? Does this Life character control you?
It might seem this way, I get it. But I don’t accept it. Because this “life” you’re letting control you, is stealing your LIFE. The LIFE you feel when you’re engaged in work your love. The LIFE you experience when you’re with your close ones. The LIFE you experience when you’re full of vitality and fitness. That’s LIFE.
That’s the gal that shows up at my home each morning, “LIFE” tattooed boldly on each of her forearms. She opens her arms wide and asks, “What do you want to do with me today?” I’m learning to say yes more and more. You?
Unfortunately, more people today than ever are living in Thoreau’s “quiet desperation” and accepting “life” like helpless balloons blowing in the wind. I offer up instead William Ernest Henley’s approach to life from his poem Invictus:
“I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul.”
Take the wheel, my friend. Take the wheel.
Remember your mantra for today: NOURISHING MOVEMENT, NOURISHING FOOD, NOURISHING LIFE.