One of the things about the wonderful society we live in I don’t understand is the concept of “ambition”. I’m not sure what this ambition thing is all about. I don’t get the whole “I must be the best” or “I must be superior” or “I must have power”. What is the meaning of this? What is it all for? Why do people drive themselves so hard to achieve this? What, at the end of the day, is the lasting value of it?
I’m looking around me at friends from university, at people I know from work, and youngsters I know who are still at school and university and I’m wondering about them. What is it that drives them? What is it that makes them tell themselves “I cannot be happy unless I achieve this or that, unless I have control over this or that, unless I’m the best and everyone else looks up at me”. What gives? Where is the lasting value in that?
Just as important a question is why would people who do achieve the six-figure bank balance, who are the best, who do have control then go and look down at those who do not? Another question is why would they measure someone’s worth based on that?
The thing that annoys me most is that this attitude is so prevalent that those who have not achieved those things buy into it start measuring THEIR worth that way. I’m looking at these kids and my co-workers and I’m absolutely aghast. Why on earth would you take it to heart when someone talks down to you? They not only take that kind of bullshit, they lie down and whimper about it. It makes me want to reach down their pants to feel if there are any balls down there.
Seriously people...grow a pair.
What is your life worth? Power? Control? Money?
“Hey, I’ve got a billion in the bank! That makes me better than you!” “I’m CEO of this company! That makes me better than you!” “I’m the best artist on this site! That makes me better than you!”
Really? It does? How come? How so? In what way? What is all their power, their money, their control...what is that to me? It certainly doesn’t affect me one way or the other. I don’t work for his company, so he’s not the boss of me. I’m not particularly competitive, so the fact that I can’t draw a stick-figure doesn’t bother me in the slightest. I don’t have a billion in the bank, but hey...I’m not starving, and I have enough to be able to do most of the things I want to do. Not being the power-monger control-freak CEO with a billion in the bank doesn’t affect my self-worth or my happiness and I really, truly do not understand why people who have exactly the same things I do can’t be happy unless they become the power-mongering, control-freak CEO with a billion in the bank. Oh, and who can draw astonishing art.
Are there things I still want to achieve in my life? Sure. I’d love to work at the provincial level under the banner of the Green Scorpions. There I could REALLY make a difference. Maybe I could even level up from there and work at the National level. Whoa! That would just be awesome! I’d love to publish a few of my stories and it would be really nice if someone somewhere loved them. Maybe one day I can learn to note down music and compose that epic classical/metal extravaganza I’ve been dreaming somebody would come up with. I’d love to travel the world and maybe even change it. Sure. I’d love a billion in the bank. Who wouldn’t?
But the thing is...am I going to go out whimpering if I don’t achieve any of those things? No. In my life, I’ve done what I could do. I took the chances that came my way and I took leaps of faith blind. Sometimes I fell and shattered myself on the ground below. Sometimes, I landed on all fours and kept right on running. And sometimes there were loving arms to catch me and save me.
What does it matter that I don’t have all those things now? What does it matter whether I ever achieve them? Where is the lasting value in any of that? At the end of the day, there will always be someone better, someone smarter, someone richer, someone with more power, with better management skills, better artistic ability. And even if that person doesn’t come along in your lifetime...at some point or another, someone will eclipse you. So why attach your self-worth to something ultimately so utterly meaningless? At the end of the day...all that matters is whether you like yourself and you you are happy with yourself. That doesn’t come from outside yourself. That comes from within. If you despise yourself, no amount of money or achievement will erase it. And that is when you start looking down on others. You can see them struggling up and you know that one day...they will displace you. So you hit them, make them suffer...but at the end of the day, it’s YOUR life that’s empty...because ultimately, you chased something meaningless.
I don’t want to live my life and at the end of it have only money and power and reputation to show for it. That’s sterile and empty and I don’t want that.
At the end of the day, the only thing I want, the one thing that makes me tick, is to live my life with my white wolf beside me, to grow old with him, and return from whence we came still in love, forever side by side. That is the entire extent of my ambition, the only ambition that makes any sense to me at all. I don’t care about power, riches, control, best, or anything else. Whatever of that comes our way in this life is all well and good...but the having of that is secondary to the primary.
That’s how I am. I cannot be any other way and still be me.
Take it or leave it.
8 years, 6 months ago
04 Jul 2010 15:26 CEST