How to Guarantee a Future You Love

A line from Seth Godin’s post yesterday resonated with me:

“Everything will be alright” is not the same as “everything will stay the same.”

The distinction here is that, for things to be alright, things often need to change. As Einstein reminded us, you can’t keep doing what you’re doing and expect a different result. That’s insanity.

I often say some variation of “Everything will be alright”, which is a statement I believe. But, it’s also important to recognize that it’s not a passive sentiment.

For everything to be alright, you have to choose to be alright. To some degree, yes, time heals wounds, but much of that healing has to come from within. Other people might help, but most of the responsibility is on you. You have to choose to be OK.

Sometimes we forget who we are and who we want to be. Sometimes we have a goal for so long that we become complacent and numb to it. We forget that achieving that goal isn’t simply a matter of waiting around long enough for life to hand it to you. That’s helping things stay the same.

You can’t just sit around and wait for someone to hand you your dream job. People — employers — don’t care about you. They don’t care that their job would be a lifesaver for you. They don’t care that you’d be able to get your own place, and pay off your student loans, and start your own career and your own life. They don’t care because they don’t know. They don’t know who you are.

You’re just a résumé — and they don’t care about your typography skills.

The longer I try to fit into a neat, socially acceptable box, trying to find something that will allow me to both pay rent and not sell my soul, the greater my suspicion that perhaps it would be better to create my own something. Perhaps it would be better to not try and live someone else’s life.

The more I put my future at the mercy of others, the more things stay the same. And, everything staying the same is not the same as everything turning out alright.

The only way to guarantee a future you love is to build it for yourself.

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