We’re always walking someplace new.
We’re forever jogging to catch up, and eternally running to not be left behind. It makes sense, of course, that in a world of 7.6 billion, you have to be ahead of the pack, so we run.
The problem is that we never stop. As a child, I ran to keep up with my brother’s ‘giant’ strides. As a student, I’m running to keep up with my classmates. As a young man trying to forge his place in the world, my brother is running to keep up with the constantly evolving workplace. As adults, my parents are running to keep up with their deadlines. Perhaps, with the exception of my elderly grandmother who isn’t on her feet much, we have all fallen victim to this cycle.
There are 9,096 stars in our skies alone. There are 9,096 reasons to look up, but we’re always looking down. The stars exist to remind us of something beyond the everyday, to show us that the bigger picture that we’re choosing to ignore, and that we are surrounded by something greater than all of us. Yet for a world where we explore the endless skies, fly amongst the stars and look for worlds beyond our own, we are awfully preoccupied with our own.
There are 352,282 flowers on our earth. There are 352,282 reasons to stop and smile but all we do is sigh and frown. The flowers exist to remind us that the smallest things in life can bring you joy; the tiniest petals can bring a smile to your lips and the faintest scent can bring you delight. Yet for a world where we forage through the rainforests, swim through the deepest seas and traipse though sweltering sands, we seem awfully unhappy.
We no longer smile; perhaps we have deemed it a waste of time. We no longer laugh, because we are too busy to. We no longer see today as reality, but a mere ticket to the future that we dream of. Our dreams of tomorrow are killing our life in the present.
We no longer strive for success as an innate desire to better ourselves, but only to keep up with the toxic competition of our own making. I no longer study because I want to learn. I study because everyone else studies, and I have to be better. We live in cages of our own design, killing our creativity and dreams – the very things that made us human. Individuality crippled and free thought handicapped, all we do is follow the crowd, forgetting to live.
The change I want to make is small, but it will make all the difference. We live in a world so breathtakingly beautiful – but we don’t know it. We don’t know it because we’ve never looked at the sides of the path, just straight ahead towards the end goal. We have never stopped to smell the flowers, or just taken a moment to giggle away the stress. That’s the change I want to make in the world. I want it to be alright to laugh even if I have a test the next day. I want it to be okay for my brother to sometimes take a break. I want to live like a 15 year old, not worry about my future when I’m 50 years old. I want it to be okay for everyone to simply live life.
It’s all we have to do – smile a little, laugh a little and realise that our world is incredibly strong, and one bad test grade isn’t enough to bring it all crashing down. We need to throw away our tattered running shoes, plop down in the middle of that crowded road, and maybe, take a drink of water. Life isn’t a race, and it never has been. It’s okay if sometimes you can’t breathe. It’s okay if sometimes you aren’t the best and it’s okay if your brother walks a little faster than you. We take the world more seriously than it takes us, and it’s time for that to change.
You’ve already walked someplace new. So, take a second, and breathe.
We’re always walking someplace new.