Ad Nauseam

When I first read the review of my book on Amazon describing it as “cookie cutter” I took offense. It hurt my feelings.

At the time I was writing to help get myself through a point in life where I felt stuck and was desperate to escape. Those cookie cutter ideas were the words I needed to get through another day. It was what I longed to hear from someone else … only I didn’t have someone else. I had to be that someone.

I was the only person who could help me get through.

On the outside I projected an image of happiness and success, all the while on the inside I never felt happy or successful. I had no emotion. I wasn’t happy or sad. Just bored. Blank. Empty.

I was searching for something to fill the void.

I traveled the world. I jumped out of airplanes. I climbed mountains. But no matter where I went or what I did I could never escape the feeling of complete emptiness and disconnect. Nothing seemed to do anything to alleviate the problem. I felt like I had no purpose in my life. All of these things I had done and was doing felt meaningless.

So I wrote.

I wrote cookie cutter advice to myself and shared it with the world, hoping in my words that maybe I could be the voice someone else needed in their life. Maybe I could inspire other people who felt the same way I did. The lost. The hopeless.

I think most people go through a phase in life when they question their purpose in this world. “What the fuck am I doing here?”

I ran far and wide, doing everything I could to escape from the person I was … trying to be someone else. But everywhere I went, there I was.

So my writing and advice is “cookie cutter.” Maybe it was. Maybe it is. But I wasn’t writing for anyone but myself. It’s what I needed to hear at that time in my life. I needed those words just like some people need a joint after work. I needed to find a way to get through another day of my life. I needed to feel like I had something to work towards and some type of purpose.

I’m still not sure what the point of life actually is. We’re here. We spend all of our life trying to survive, only to die anyway. That brief glimpse of time between two eternities is all we get. No repeats. No second chances.

If we aren’t happy, we need to figure out how to be happy. I’m not saying happiness is the point of life.

But being happy sure as hell makes waiting to die a lot more enjoyable.

✓ Goal #147) Stand at the Center of Stonehenge

Something about Stonehenge has always captured my imagination.

When I added this goal to my list, like most of my goals, I didn’t want to just go and look … I wanted to immerse myself in the experience. I wanted to stand inside the stones and be surrounded by them.

Last month I went to England and took a tour of Stonehenge. Our bus arrived early in the morning before the crowds of tourists and we split into two groups. I waited to join the second group.

I poked around the gift shop for a while and then went outside to marvel at the stones in the distance, peaking through the morning mist. Once our group was allowed to enter, I walked through the center, took some photos and then walked around the edge holding hands with my girlfriend.

It was smaller than I’d expected but still impressive. One of the guards took us aside to show us how some of the stones had been repaired and others where people had carved their names.

As the people from our group began filtering out of the stones, I had one last thing I needed to do. I walked around to the edge of the circle and knelt down in front of my girlfriend to propose.

She said “Yes.”

We lingered a while longer as the rest of the crowd left and for a few moment it was just us and the security guards.

Wants Versus Wishes

Everything you have in life is because you wanted it. The things you own, the people you surround yourself with and the things you do each day are all your creation. Your decision to want that in your life.

You keep what you want, ignore or remove what you don’t.

You might hate your job but the truth is, you don’t want to leave because you’re afraid of the unknown. You want the comfort of knowing what comes tomorrow.

Your relationship might’ve been over a long time ago but you don’t want to leave because you don’t want to be alone. There is safety in pairs.

You’re always broke and never able to get ahead but you don’t want to work another job to make more money. You can’t afford that new purse but you want it, so you put it on your credit card.

You don’t want to leave your job. You don’t want to find someone new (or be alone.) You don’t want to have money in the bank.

You don’t want to be active. You don’t want to be skinny.

You don’t want to travel the world.

You don’t want to learn how to speak Italian.

You might think you want these things. But you don’t.

You don’t want any of it.

But you wish you did.

And there’s a difference between wanting something and wishing for something.

If you want something, you’ll make it happen. You’re willing to sacrifice whatever you need in order to have the things you want in life. If you hate your job, you’re willing to risk opening the door into the unknown to find work that’s rewarding.

If you’re not happy in your relationship, you might wish things were different. But if you want them to be different, then you’ll do whatever it takes to try to fix what’s broken or have the courage to leave and be alone.

If you don’t want to be broke anymore, you’ll find a way to get out of debt and start saving money. You’ll quit spending money on shit you don’t need. You’ll pick up extra hours at work or find another job. Maybe you’ll start a side hustle to earn extra money.

If you want to travel the world but you’re not traveling the world, you don’t really want to. You’re just wishing.

You don’t want to be fit and healthy. You’re just wishing.

It’s time for you to stop wishing and start wanting. Want it bad enough to make it happen.

Wanting without action is still wishing.

Don’t wish your life away.