When I sat down to read the Fargo Forum this morning, this was what I saw on the front page:
I won’t go into too much detail since you can read the article if you would like, but basically it talks about this guy who spends his days doing all these awesome things like organizing service trips and bringing TEDx talks to Fargo. He is only 29 years old.
This article really got me thinking. It was inspiring to read about all these great things this man has accomplished, but it did make me feel somewhat unaccomplished in my own life. I’m a pretty average (almost boring) person. The two coolest things I’ve done in my life are probably going to college at Notre Dame (which was a big deal in my small hometown) and spending a semester in Europe. Everything else about me is pretty average. I want to be this rockin’ history teacher that changes kids’ lives, but I’m currently working as a media specialist. I spend a few days each month teaching technology or research lessons for different teachers, but otherwise I have a lot of downtime that’s spent surfing the internet. After school I usually have practice of some sort (I coach middle school volleyball and basketball) and then I go to the gym to train for a half marathon. By the time I get home I’m pretty wiped out so I watch a little TV and go to bed. My weekends are filled with catching up on sleep, more time at the gym, reading, and TV.
See what I mean? I don’t have any cool hobbies. I’m not a member of any interesting clubs or societies. I don’t have a lot of friends in Fargo (my high school and college friends all live 3.5+ hours away) so I don’t have a crazy social life either. I’m going to be 25 on Saturday. I’m not sure if it’s the combo of the Forum article and this impending birthday, but something has got me wondering if I’m not doing enough with my life.
I started this blog because I missed updating my wedding planning blog and because I needed a release for all the emotions that were bombarding me after I broke off my engagement. I’ve kind of gotten to the point where I feel like I need to write about something really deep, profound, and life-changing. I’ve realized that in a few short weeks I’ve gone from logging in and pouring out whatever emotions I’m dealing with to spending hours considering what I’m going to write about and calculating the meaning of every word and sentence.
I can’t decide if this pressure to be profound (whether in something simple like my blog or something bigger like changing the world with my life) is societal or just a pressure that I place on myself. Either way, I need to get over it. I’m not complacent, but I can honestly say I’m pretty content with my life right now. I definitely want more (get to a more satisfying place in my career, move to a nicer place, have a happy and healthy relationship with a good man, etc) but I don’t go home every night hating my life. I know it doesn’t help me at all to compare myself to others when the comparison just leaves me with feelings of inferiority.
I’m realizing life is all about balance in many different areas. This is no different. How does one feel happy about where s/he is in life without getting complacent and not striving for more? How does one look at others’ accomplishments to get inspired without feeling inferior/guilty for not doing more with his/her own life? How does one know what is “enough” and what either pushes one too far or sells one short.
Does anyone else feel this pressure? Any suggestions on how to deal with it?