Reinvention can can be a global phenomena or something much more personal, otherwise known as a rebirth or a re-imagining, the unfortunate thing here is that it is generally seen exclusively as a 'spiritual' thing or the pursuit of a 'hippy' who has smoked one to many herbal tea bags.
So... as you go through the daily routines following your micro rituals, from running your fingers through your hair on first waking up through to which shoe you put on first prior to setting off to your 9-5, have you ever wondered what you would do differently if you were told that you only have one year left to live?
Of course it's rare to have this type of notice, but let's use some imagination and hypothesise, you never know, by stepping out out of yourself, even if just for a moment you may identify the things which are holding you back... in whatever way it is that you feel held back or where change in some form would be welcome.
There are many things that we're born into and these things rarely change from one generation to the next given a set demographic.
In this age of expanding inequality, social mobility has effectively shut down, the next generation of people may have very little reason to be ambitious or even to dare imagine something better if you don't pave the way, if you don't then a better way seems highly unlikely to materialise given the plundering of our current generation of leaders, matched with our willingness to follow blindly... but that's the future and a whole different subject so let's get back to now and you.
You were born into a country and an ethnicity, through chance of birth you're either poor or wealthy, a faith is forced on you from the holy water boarding, then your schools are selected, generally in accordance to the conditions of your birth as stated.
In essence, your standard of education determines your worth to society and if you do manage to buck the trend and excel where many in your position would not, then it's determined that the entire education system must be at fault !
Much to the horror of those at the top, you claw your way up the social slippery slope, this being socially engineered to keep you in your place.
You attend university and excel but you're then indebted where most are not... you were never privy to the bizarre societies and therefore missed the opportunities for inclusion to the old school tie / Bullingdon club....
Eventually you have your education with honours... all down to your drive, this in defiance of your chance of birth.
The thing is, you seem to run out of drive at this stage and end up taking an 'any drone can do it' job to pay the bills and possibly go on holiday every now and then.... your ambition has effectively stopped and the social gap that you were quickly closing between the privileged and yourself was so close to being sealed due to your efforts, but now you look on in horror as that gap now opens, widens and becomes as cavernous as the day you were born....
Now is a good time to think about that driving force you had early on in life and why it stopped, was it complacency or was that sense of self and indestructibility which became eroded by the societal expectations which seem set up to suck your ambition from you.
Of course you will never be a rock star, you will never get that book published, why become a painter, you have to be dead before you get rich, and for god's sake, don't become a humanitarian as it doesn't pay...
Comments designed to retain you as a worker bee and drum out the calling in life that you identified when you were maybe four years old.
Queue the 'rationale' which says that a four year old does not understand bills and responsibilities.
This is my point precisely. it is that innocence of mind, that pureness that we all lose and replace with bitterness, spite and greed brought on by fear.
Fast forward to the end of your life and I can guarantee that you will be able to identify opportunities where you could have made a difference, said that thing you should have said, chosen a particular option or taken a left instead of right.... but hindsight is great when it comes to direction, i guess doing the right thing is always right, but in an act of criminality against ourselves we adopt a cost benefit methodology to everything.
Cost can be monetary or sense of worth, investment of trust or faith where the benefit is a reward to yourself, whether this is a positive feeling, a partner or a new car etc.
Imagine yourself as a parent which of course you may be, would you sit your child down and have that special chat with them;
- Tell them that whatever dream they have they should forget it.
- To be fearful of losing material things or feeling left behind.
- To feel guilty just for being slightly better off than someone else.
- The acquisition of ''things' is more important than the retention of friends?
- Give up all personal hope of bettering themselves.
- They will fear your god
- They should not question or rock the boat.
- People who are different should be marginalised.
- Do not stand up for the underdog, look after number one !
- Charity begins at home but a text donation is fine, don't be proactive in caring.
- You will be judged and you will judge others in under 7 seconds !
- War is good and to be called for at all opportunities !
- Responsibility is paying tax.
Of course, you have been conditioned to see the above as being essential to live a fully rewarding life (if not then why follow anything on the list?) but remember, you now have one year to live and this is the perfect opportunity to become your truer self.
So, wash your hands with social expectation and cleanse your mind of social conditioning, you can scrub away the grime of enforced guilt and allow fear to drain away....
So now what?
- Would you pursue your dreams?
- Would you develop on a more spiritual level rather than materialistic?
- Would you cease to fear rejection and confront those issues you felt awkward about, perhaps telling those people who hurt you or vice versa how you feel
- Would you hold that grudge any longer?
- Would you tell those that you loved, but could never articulate this, that you love them regardless of whether they would laugh in your face or embrace the thought of it.
- Would you open your eyes and stand in awe of the world, would you open your lungs and inhale the air, gradually coming to all your senses then experience all the wonders of the world.
- Would you live without fear? that is fear of missing out, fear of financial loss or fear or rejection?.
- Would you work toward a grand gesture to improve the life of others?
- Would priority shift from things to feelings?
If you really can't think of anything that you would do differently then you're already dead on the inside, if you believe that you would change even one thing then you must question why you would only do this this if you only had one year to go?
By; Mark McIntyre
PositivelyConfident Belfast Helathier Lifestyle Coaching
1onOne Personal Training Northern Ireland
Belfast Bootcamping outdoor group fitness