Why do I need another “medium” to handle myself?
This was the first question that came to my mind when I virtually stepped into „Medium“. The idea behind this website is fascinating, simple but inspiring. However, it is another social media platform where you can like stuff, others have written. You can follow people and show them if you like the stories they produce. And all this „following“ and „liking“ stuff is based on the same principle — and I’m asking myself if it’s helping me or just consuming my valuable life time. By the way, what do I need help for then?
Can I please get an answer to this fairly simple question? A lot of things are going on in my life that we might describe as a bit of a mid life crisis. But am I that old?
Anyway, let’s get back to me as I registered for „Medium“ and thought about the words I had put into the title of my first story and started questioning what I was doing.
Why do I need another thing to handle myself?
Simple question, simple answer — I like to compete and I like to see people, I may not even know, admiring my work. If I know them, even better. We all want to be meaningful with what we do, don’t we? I like to be good at something and I love it when people tell me that I’m good at this or that — most of us do, right? But why? What’s the motivation in sharing my live with others for recognition? Is it to beat down the possible irrelevance of my existence? Is it just to feel better for a moment? Better than the moment before? If so, why would I never be satisfied with the good feeling that was there a second ago? Am I still reasonable; or am I searching for something special that can only be found if I ask every single human on mother earth? Each and every day of my life I’d like to get up and say — look this is what I’ve done, this is what I gave you — imagining myself standing in front of millions of people. If that would ever happen, I know I’d pee my pants and most probably faint for excitement.
These people would look up to me, would follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or on my YouTube channel as if it’s the most important thing in the world to have a million subscribers — actually I don’t have any of these social media (anymore). But there is nothing much I invented or did for mankind that would make any difference or trigger people’s attention. And that immediately makes me feel sad for myself, because I try so hard to be meaningful. This thought is instantly connected to a saying from D. H. Lawrence:
“A small bird will drop frozen dead from a bough without ever having felt sorry for itself.”
So stop feeling sorry for yourself dumbo — you’re a fighter and you have nothing to complain about! I did a lot for the people around me, thinking about the thousands of minutes I’ve dedicated to the kids in my community as a soccer coach, but that’s another story. Anyway, while realizing that I already stepped into the next exciting and time consuming digital trap, I mentally slump down with my entire body in total emptiness. Because non of these show-off and compare platforms are able to help me in reaching the next level of wisdom — by the way, what would that be?
All of the above thoughts raced through my mind within a minute of my life and right as I subscribed for “Medium” — that’s only one of 42 million minutes I will survive, if I live on this planet for 80 years. Oh my gosh, my life has already been consumed for more than 50 percent. And yes, I mean it. It has been consumed — partly from me and partly form others Facing this truth, why would I waste any of those residual precious minutes in seeking for fame, for attraction or for that tiny little phrase from somebody I don’t know stating “Hey great story!”.
All of that just to feel better for another minute? Would I become a better person, a better husband or a better father? No, of course not, but I always feel better when I write, just for the sake of doing it and that’s good — that’s why I’m here.
Before I continue, I’d like to share some questions I’m constantly faced with these days and I finally want to know, why I am doing this? This is what my story is about. To find out why I behave the way I do, because one part of me is convinced that it’s useless to the overall objective of life and the other part which obviously is a more superficial one, saying “Don’t you worry, it’ll be good for you, because you are the sum of all of your experiences”. Okay I stop it for a moment and try to put together the millions of questions that have a luxurious party on my mind all day to only a couple ones:
What could I do to give my life a meaningful existence and what is meaningful for me in this sense? Would I do this thing that would make my life meaningful regardless of social perception, or is recognition a must? What is a behavior that is mostly in line with my image of a good human being? Why am I stressed from the diverting things electronic devices throw at me all day? Why am I stressed at all — what is distracting me from the most important things in life? Oh by the way, what is the most important thing?
I’m unable to answer those questions for real, even though I feel like I have answered them a hundred times on my mind before. Still I don’t have the composure to face the unknown just for some time and accept it the way it is. My usual behavior would be to calm myself down and relax continuing with what I’ve done yesterday. And here we go, a moment later I find myself playing the farmer on my tablet’s “HayDay” or any other addictive game….that’s so ridiculous. It does not help me and I’m pretty sure there are a lot of people experiencing the same.
So what would I do if a friend would ask me for advice based on the above story line? And here comes the best part. The moment, you’re honest with yourself, you exactly know what to do and how to do it. But you don’t have the patience to go for it step by step, one at a time. Because to be a faithful and grateful human being takes time and ease of mind.
Okay, hold on for a minute…
First we talk about fame, based on our daily digital spam. Then we ride from wasting our precious life time and being a meaningful person to somebody who is asking for patience, quietness and a life without stress.
You can continue this journey in any direction you like, because all of these topics are somehow connected. And the only answer you will find is an extrinsic one. And yes, it is something simple that can be found everywhere. That does not cost much, but is worth everything. It has helped kids that have experienced horror stories along their young lives to forget the past, even though forgetting is not the right term; it has helped adults going through the worst times one could go through. It is what fills your heart and mind when you think you’re empty. And it does make you feel better than the moment before if you are willing to give it the attraction it deserves. And that’s the thing we are looking for, when we compete and share on platforms like this.
It’s love. Love is the answer, the cure and the one thing that is always there as a universal force to help you get over the dark clouds of one’s day. And right as I tap my keys, it fills me with a warm feeling, thinking about my wife, my boy and the wonderful weekend ahead of us. And bang — all the stress is gone for a moment — I feel better. Wasn’t that what I asked for some lines above; to feel better, to feel loved? Love makes my life meaningful.
I’m not sure where my journey will end, but I’m sure that the hour I spend on this story has helped me with all my questions. When I started with it, I didn’t know where I’d end. But for today, I have an answer — I love my wife, I love my kid and I love my mother; they love me back. And that’s what counts.
Thanks for reading and even though I’m not a native English writer, I hope the words I put together do make sense. And if you feel overwhelmed by yourself or by the digital rubbish, go out and tell somebody that you love them — they will most likely love you back. And that helps a lot through all times!