Life sucks. There is no getting away from that fact. Maybe not all the time, but a lot of the time, life sucks big fat donkey balls.
That’s a statement you won’t come across too often in these days of self help and positive thinking.
To those who advocate brainwashing as a means to a more “positive and fulfilling” life (read: false and unreachable fantasy life), stating in no uncertain terms that life sucks would be met first of all by a physical response like the one below…
…followed by a verbal response along the lines of, “Someone needs to start saying their affirmations a bit more,” or “You are too negative, you need to think more positively.”
Well maybe I just can’t think more fucking positively at the moment! Maybe you need to stop fooling yourself with your inane self help bullshit talk!
Life does fucking suck for a lot of people, a lot of the time. That’s a fact.
Denying that fact will not change it or make it go away.
Unfortunately, it is the way of things in this age to hide from the uncomfortable truths of existence behind a veneer of lies and a wall of escapism-behind the lies we tell ourselves to make ourselves feel better, and behind the infinite layers of escapism on offer these days.
But life can still suck anyway, maybe even more so when the lies and escapism don’t stop the suckism, barely mask it in fact.
You are born and then you die. So what? Why bother?
Because we don’t really have a choice, that’s why.
The Irony Of Existence
That’s the real bitch about the human experience. A lot of the time that experience can be unbearable and seem dreadfully pointless and meaningless, but despite the suffering involved, we are still compelled by some force within us to carry on.
We are compelled to endure endless amounts of pain and suffering, right to the moment of our deaths, never knowing if there was a point to any of it.
Granted, some people kill themselves. They just say fuck it, and end it.
But here’s a fact you should know about suicide. Almost every person who tries and fails to kill themselves, they all say the same thing went through their heads the moment they make the kill stroke, and that is…
“What the fuck did I just do? I don’t really want to die!”
Suicide might seem like an option, but really it isn’t. It’s just a sad cry for help, and unfortunately, many people die before they can get that help.
Besides which, at the end of it all, when you are lying in hospital recovering, your life will still suck. Only now you have guilt and shame weighing heavily on you on top of everything else and who the fuck wants that?
So we have established that life sucks. Question is, what do we do about it, besides just carrying on like gradually failing automatons?
Find Your Sense Of Purpose
The only way I have found to combat that sense of futility is by having a purpose of some sort.
I have tried money, family, drugs, sex and a whole host of other things I dare not mention, but a sense of clear purpose is the only thing that makes me want to carry on in life, or at least to try and rise above some of the suffering that is always waiting in the wings like a dark specter.
Purpose has given me a sense of meaning in life when meaning was otherwise sorely absent.
Purpose will allow you to state in fairly certain terms (as certain as you will ever get anyway), “This is why I am here, so this is what I will do.”
In my experience, that purpose has to be personal only to you. Existing just for other people is not a strong enough purpose to live by. You can exist for others, but only after you have decided to exist for yourself first. There is no great fulfillment in living your life just for other people.
You might disagree with that, especially if you have a wife and kids as I do. But you would be misunderstanding me.
All I’m saying, is that you can’t really help others until you help yourself first.
That’s not being selfish or narcissistic in any way. That’s being truthful.
At those times when my life sucks, I try to remind myself of my purpose, the purpose I have decided to live by.
Sometimes it takes me a while to remember that, especially when I have been through a very raw emotional experience that has upset me and threw me off course.
The fallout from such experiences are usually only temporary however. The quicker I remember the why of my life, the quicker I stop thinking about the what for, and the less my life seems to suck.
There is more power in that kind of honesty with yourself than there is in any amount of forced (false) positive thinking. That shit only masks the pain underneath, it doesn’t directly deal with it.
To deal with the pain of existence, you have to look straight at it and first of all acknowledge that it is there.
The pain is real.
But so is the balm of purpose.
Applying the balm of purpose to the pain of existence will allow you to regain your equilibrium and see things more clearly.
Eventually, you come to think, “Shit happens. So what?”
(For added power, find your sense of humor. Finding humor in a situation is a great way to reduce the negative hold it has over you, as well as allowing you to see how absurd and ridiculous life is most of the time.)
The Logic Of Why Things Happen
It is likely that shit happens for a reason. I am not always convinced of that, but I’d be willing to bet it is true.
When I look at some of the situations that have caused me pain, I realize that the pain was there to remind to change, or to force me into learning a lesson from the experience.
If I keep making the same mistakes that only cause me pain, that’s an indication I need to stop making those mistakes.
If I go through a traumatic experience, that’s probably because I need to learn some kind of lesson from it.
It’s really quite logical when you look at it like that.
What is not often easy is taking heed of these warnings and lessons. As humans we sometimes seem doomed to repeat certain mistakes and behaviors until the day we die. That’s just life.
The better you become at taking heed and learning lessons though, the less your life will generally suck, which is where personal development comes in. And I mean the realistic kind, not the law of attraction, willing yourself into being a millionaire or movie star kind. That’s wishful thinking. There is a massive difference.
As I mentioned in a previous article, a personal development program can give you the tools to help you become the kind of person who can best fulfill their purpose. The nature of your purpose will dictate the kind of person you are and the kind of person you need to become.
No matter how much personal development you do however, your life will still suck at times.
For those times, you need the power of purpose-the power of why-to remind you of what you are doing on this planet in the first place.
Purpose is a lifeboat in a sea of suffering. It is easier to navigate in a boat than in the sea itself with the waves crashing over you as you feel like you are drowning.
When everything else is in flux, your sense of purpose will remain constant.
At least until the aliens come and tell us that everything we thought we knew is completely and utterly wrong.
For now, remember your purpose, keep your head up, and carry on soldier…