Do you remember what it felt like when you fell in love for the first time? The feeling of nervous anticipation of your first kiss? Or the vulnerable uncertainty as you lost your virginity? The pain of your first broken heart?
In our youth, our emotions were uncensored. Pure. Everything felt raw, like an exposed nerve. Emotions surged through our veins, inside us a fire burned brilliantly. Everything seemed…intense. Life was meaningful.
We loved without hesitation. Dreamed without doubt. Trusted without question.
The child is grown, The dream is gone. I have become comfortably numb. ~ Pink Floyd
What’s happened to us?
Our lives used to be filled with purpose and urgency, but now they’re filled with expectations and obligations. The fire inside us that once burned so brilliantly is nearly extinguished, little more than a flicker. “Welcome to the Real World,” we’re told…and we listen, accepting our lives for the way they are, stifling our dreams in exchange for a life that’s “real.”
Occasionally the embers from the fire of our youth are churned, and we’re reminded of our former selves; so vibrant, so idealistic, and so filled with hope for the future. But those thoughts are quickly silenced.
“Life’s complicated.” “Things are different now.” “We’re responsible.”
And our lives really aren’t that bad. Maybe they’re not quite what we’d hoped they’d be, but they’re comfortable. And we’re comfortably numb, indifferent to the lives of quiet desperation we lead.
So we’ve resigned ourselves to jobs we hate, but don’t leave because it’s “not practical” to quit just because we aren’t happy. We’re more responsible than that. Paying the mortgage and feeding our families takes priority. Besides, we’re really only mildly annoyed with our job. We’ll survive.
And we silently submit, sacrificing our happiness for a paycheck.
The passion in our relationship has slowly eroded away, until one morning we wake up wondering what the hell happened. We used to be so in love, but now it feels like we’re simply sharing space. “That’s normal,” they say. “The passion is bound to disappear.” Maybe they’re right. Maybe the passion can’t last forever.
And so we surrender, hopeless that romance will ever return to our relationship.
Our dreams are quietly abandoned as our lives become engorged with responsibilities. We have obligations to fulfill, deadlines to meet, and commitments to follow through on. There’s no time to chase our dreams. “Be practical,” we tell ourselves, and our dreams are replaced with practicality.
Except things don’t have to be this way.
If you hate your job, look for a new one until you find work that’s meaningful. Once you’ve found that, quit your old job. If you’ve lost the passion in your relationship and want it back, be passionate. Let no flat surface be immune to your sexual revelry. Fuck like you’re getting paid. And don’t abandon your dreams. They’re what gives life purpose. Find time to chase them, no matter how “impractical” they might seem. The longer you wait, the less time you have.
It’s time to rekindle the fire in your life…to find the intensity you once had.
Don’t waste your life being comfortably numb.