In this overwhelming social era when everybody advertises so aggressively their accomplishments and words like love, happiness, passion, obsession, beauty, artist or achievement are stripped of might and treated like garments for emptiness, you might get the crazy idea that something is wrong with you.
Then the personal development trainer comes along, to help, and in so many weeks and months you learn what can be basically summed up as: you can do anything.
And yet still unhappy you are.
You can do anything.
There are no limits for the human being because at any point in life when the general intelligence you posses kicks in, you can decide, in a somewhat conscious way, any outcome of possible choices. Therefore you are not totally bound to neither chemical control by, say, hormonal products nor totally by the total electric state of your nervous system — what we call sentience.
This swing between aware and unaware is letting very little predictability in a human being’s behavior. The fact that we can however predict human behavior has a lot more to do with social conditioning than with individual aspects.
Considering the above it becomes a self proven thing that you can do anything. Mind the difference between doing and accomplishing. You can do anything but there are no guarantees on the outcome of your actions.
You are defined by what you would do.
Given an infinitely big and infinitely deep ocean of choice you would not dive past a certain pressure nor sail farther than a certain time. How deep and how far you would go defines who you are, and in this sense one can say they are defined by their choices. Its not by what you do, but what you would do.
You would do some good and some bad
… and they define each other.
The basic idea of human imperfection, and the millennial strive to fix it, is rooted in one simple fact: for every good trait, every high default, every constructive attitude there is also the corresponding bad trait, low default and destructive attitude. If there was otherwise there would be no possibility for creativity nor expansion simply because everything is built on interaction and interaction is made of action and reaction.
Your Jekyll and your Hide are sides which allow you to harness the miracle of being self aware. Some call them the white and the black horse, the angel and the devil on your shoulders and so forth.
It is worthy to note that from all the descriptions of a human’s dual nature the least fortunate one is “reason and instinct”. Both reason and instinct are byproducts of existence and they are intertwined in allowing a sentient biologically reproducing being to exist. If we ever get to reproduce 100% artificially then the instinct will dwindle in time but the reason will be even more socially conditioned than it is today.
What you could do is limited by your imagination.
Anyone who lives within their means suffers from a lack of imagination.
This is quite self obvious. Since you can do anything the only possible way to have any limits set on this is to be unable to imagine farther than a certain dream.
This is interesting because it becomes clear that the educated individual’s imagination has incommensurately larger borders of dreamland than the common simpleton’s, some by such a margin that these borders are only theoretical. Hence it is probably of utmost importance for individuals to strive and expand the natural imagination land by educating themselves: read, eat, drink, talk, ask, solve, feel, etc.
What you should do is defined by reality.
Hell is other people.
Not the real but the common misinterpretation of Sartre’s idea describes very well the relation between reality and what one should do. Social people, and among them extroverts, are experts in figuring out what they should do. But a great part of this learning is handled also by parents and religious figures. Therefore, sometimes the contents of what one should do is the greatest manipulation force to be faced in a lifetime.
What you would do is in your individuality.
Man know thyself and you shall know the Universe and Gods.
If you dive into discovering yourself, eventually what you would do becomes very obvious. Experienced people are sometimes far better off in knowing what they would do, even if they have weaker intellects and shallow personalities. Direct experience of a varied array of situations is more self revealing than introspection, even more than meditation.
This is one of the reasons travelers are such interesting people, and so laid back in their attitude. Folk who are aware of their “would do’s” tend to tell good stories and strive less for every breath.
Pleasure is doing what you should do.
Pleasure is temporary, so much that if we force it to last it effectively vanishes. Its temporary condition raises from the fact that it is the greatest feedback enforcer. Pleasure forms habits, customs and individual stereotypes. Pleasure cuts trough experience with raw categorization: good or bad. Because pleasure has such power nature made sure it is connected to what you should do; the biggest form of positive feedback defines in time the should with great accuracy.
Joy is getting to do all that you could do.
Joy is immersive and unlike pleasure it lasts. Joy is the expression of transcending limits. Of all the things, freedom is the biggest joy creator and that is why it is so cherished. Therefore joy is experienced when we hit the realm of all that we could do. In doing what one could do a human becomes living art — because then the simple existence is expressed directly as a product of imagination, in striking similarity to art, although art is sometimes produced by fantasy too.
Good to remember that imagination is different from fantasy. Fantasy alters reality while imagination alters reason.
Happiness is into what you would do.
Happiness proves to be extremely peculiar. If it wouldn’t be than money would repeatedly bring happiness, but, at least as the saying goes, they don’t.
Unless you know what you would do, filling in the blanks of your happiness puzzle is extremely difficult, especially more so if you happen to also want everything.
Happiness can be a blink or everlasting depending on its ingredients and in both occasions once attained it has transcendence like effects on people. It is noteworthy how detached, lofty and inherently “spiritual” people become once their specific details for happiness are met.
As we move along, time passes us by. In the continuous struggle of being caught between what we should have done and what we could have done, our personal evolution and the essence of our life stays hidden in what we would still do right now.