Wednesday, December 08, 2004

The Meaning of Life

I hope I can put it in words eloquently.

You know how when people start out as kids, they play, then they go to school and study, first primary school then secondary school and then college, uni... maybe go overseas to get that degree. After studies, of course naturally comes work. So you work every day 5 days a week, maybe more, maybe less. But generally you work. You get your salary to pay bills, eat, buy things.

This is the normal routine people follow and that's all fine and dandy. But do they know why they're doing this? Sure, you can say I work to get money to eat. But I think most people think of work as something that has to be done. As in... we breathe, we work. Do you get the meaning? This is not easy to explain. It doesn't seem to come out right in words.

Basically I think that a lot of people, especially in Asia, think of work as a need in life. It's like eating and drinking. It's a part of life just like walking and talking.

It actually isn't.

I believe that life is for us to enjoy and be happy. It doesn't mean that if you don't work, you'll be unhappy. I think a lot of people would enjoy life much more if they didn't feel obligated to work. Okay that didn't come out right again. I know people will be arguing with me saying that people should work so they don't snatch old ladies' handbags.

But work is here to serve a purpose, and that is to feed us and to make us happy. Not the other way round. We shouldn't feel fulfilled by having a job. Or a job that pays well. We should be USING work to work for us. If we want to go on a holiday, we should be using our work to give us that. And not work so hard for promotions and money and awards, thinking that that'll make us happy.

Remember ourselves as kids feeling free and happy? That's when we're free of obligations. We can still achieve that as adults when we go on holiday. Even when we work.

I also realised that many people feel that they've shut their eyes and suddenly opened them 30 years later. It's like life flew by, isn't it?

That's because many adults live life in the tomorrow. They plan what to do. They can't be satisfied if they don't know what they're gonna do tomorrow. Of course planning meetings for businesses are important but it shouldn't take up your whole week. It'll fly by before you can realise it's arrived. If it's not possible to relax during the week, at least do it during the weekends.

Don't sit at home and laze around during the weekends. It doesn't make the day longer, it shortens it. The secret is to wake up and then plan what to do for the day and do it. The less time you've planned something and the more time you spend doing things, the more time you seem to have. That's the secret little children have. Remember feeling that you were gonna be 9 forever?

Now I know this is getting boring so I won't keep going on and on trying to clarify my statements. I know what I realised and I hope that this renaissance will come to you guys soon too.

Just remember not to force yourself to do something. Life is a gift for us humans to enjoy and make the best of our senses, feelings and emotions. It shouldn't just be stress and nerves. We're capable of so much more happiness if only we'd realise what's truly important (and I don't mean only boring stuff like family (which is of course very important) but I also mean having fun, being in love). And somehow, the days will lengthen magically.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi Shoobs,
It's Janice. Your Flooble didn't have enough space for me :) Hehe. Anyways just wanted to say that I agree with your post. Having spent most of my teenage/adolescent years in Australia, I have grown up realising that work isn't everything. More importantly, work is not your life. And I never intend to make it my life. I think that there is so much more to life than going to the office everyday and sitting infront of a computer, going into meetings, impressing your boss, getting promoted, getting bigger and bigger salaries. Personally, I think that most of us in Asian countries are just so caught up in the entire rat race...who's got the higher paying job, who's got the bigger house, who's got the nicer car. I'm so over that. I honestly don't think that how much you earn, or how materialistically (is that a word??) wealthy you are determines your happiness and satisfaction in life. Sure, it could add to how happy and satisfied you are but it surely isn't the essence of it.