Good evening ladies and gentleman.
Across lockdowns and through the previous winter, i think we all found ourselves watching a lot more television. Binge watching these shows for hours on end, something to do on a day when there really wasn’t a lot to do. One episode became two, two rapidly became 5 and you ended up sat there wandering what happened to the day.
Episodes. Generally around 60 minutes, not long enough to lose your attention but long enough to keep you invested in this character, giving a mere snapshot into what is illustrated as nothing more than a few hours or days of their lives. As one episode becomes the next, the situation has changed, where they are, what they are doing, what they are wearing, even the time of day. The same, but different.
This is the natural progression of the show. The episodes could become seasons if well received and progression can become infinitely more vast than a few hours, movies, theatre productions- the sky is the limit when a show gains popularity. What if there was a reason they were like that- why does it feel so familiar?
Because i think we as humans need this structure. Not routine and not defined by any specific length, the need for natural progression is forever rooted deep into your psyche, this need to evolve- to grow.
It may not be quick, the movement could be impossibly minute, but consistent progression, forwards or backwards is more important than many of us understand. We need to evolve. But how? When you have that daily sensation of being stuck, not seeing a way through the darkness, the walls closing in, not knowing if you’ll ever stand straight again. Dreams in a cage, a play thing for the voices in your head, fed morsels with the intention of keeping them alive, but never letting them fly.
It can feel like some people are holding your leash, stopping you become that person you imagine yourself being. There are people that want you to feel like you should toe the line, do as your told, their experience of life trumps yours, so its important to follow in their footsteps.
So maybe that’s what you did. You followed in behind them, stuck at something, maybe a relationship you weren’t sure you should be in, maybe its a job that you feel nothing for. The hobby you wish you’d got round to gathering dust in the corner, as you sit in the comfy chair in front of your TV with your favourite show on barely able to keep your eyes open.
Alarm next day… same thing, different day.
Then the next day….and the next day.
You catch yourself half asleep in a planning meeting staring out into the dappled sunlight bouncing off the car you own a third of as you earn the money for the privilege of driving to work and sitting in these interesting meetings, tie a little too tight drinking your 7th coffee of the day in an attempt just to keep your systems from crashing.
Out of nowhere you hear the squeak of the handle and in bowls the manager, prepared and ready for the presentation. Your back, and realise that a year, 2 years, or even 5 years has passed. These thoughts are powerful, because we all think we are going to have time. There’s always time to get there- “it will be fine.”
Hard thing to accept that- when the very belief that drove you sort of disappears into the depths below, unimaginable that it will ever return. You feel it deep in your very soul, as if you’ve squandered these years, thought of the teen with all those dreams and almost left embarrassed at what had resulted. Not necessarily that you hadn’t reached the heights that you imagined you would when you were 15- but surely there was more to it than this…
Where does this come from? Because the way we’ve been living, not progressing, not finding opportunities to grow and evolve, not making a mess of things, fall backwards, cry spectacularly and laugh beautifully is going against your natural needs as a human being. I’ve said this before but life is made up of events- of episodes. You go through one episode, the screen goes to black and the credits roll just in time for the next one to start. Life could be described this way, from the opening scene of the pilot to the last fade of the last show in the last season. Its very easy and often difficult to notice when you are stuck in the same episode. You’re not watching anymore, not really. The familiar pictures and sounds a comfort but not offering that part of you any sustenance, not offering one of those moments where you’re truly in that moment because it’s the only place in the world you want to be.
Why? Because you know it all and have seen it all before. It’s going through the motions and the end of it is a near impossible idea, confusing to even consider for you’re doing what “needs to be done.” You need so much more than you think, this thing we have all developed where we can hang on by a thread and “boss it out” like it’s nothing, when it clearly is continues to confuse. “Hanging on” in all its powerful hypocrisy, isn’t taking anyone, anywhere.
Life is a road, those roads are made of episodes, those moments flashbulbs of wander, of pain, of beauty, of lust, love and everything in between. They make you see the world slightly differently, learn of your mistakes and how to be better. They illustrate who you were and who you’ve become, and tell you never to lie down and take what feels like punishment because its the “right thing to do.”
The world will tell you knowledge is king, that experience is the only way to succeed at being a human being in 2022. I say that what works for them may not work for you, I say nobody has the right to tell you anything in life is the “wrong way” because it didn’t work for them.
You are unique and with that the path you find yourself on and your natural progression is ultimately down to you. Your choices, your actions, how you react to the world ultimately helps you construct your world. People can be experts in whatever they want but it comes down to you. Do the job that helps you not be broke, but know where you’re going with it. Talk to your partner and find that spark again, if something is missing- go looking for it together. Climb to the top of the mountain and survey your world and then go find a new mountain and do it all again. Each episode is different, with characters and context- but the main character is pulling the strings.
You are the conductor of your own life, the main character in your show. Don’t let the world or anybody in it, define how you feel about anything, or anyone. They don’t deserve that privilege, especially when it could be used against you, bent to their warped ideal. Don’t skip the steps you think you can’t handle, for here is where you will learn the most.
And progress constantly, hoping, working continuously to make yesterday proud. In whatever small way you can.
To Natural Progression and a Thinking Evolution.
Regards, with love as always.