Being “human” means being just one more tally mark in the vast numbers of a prolific species. So we say we’re, “only human”. Which is true and the meaning behind that statement is just – no one can expect to be a perfect human being in every regard. But that got me to thinking; does that mean that for almost the entire population, that has ever lived, we will each always just be better than the worst of us and worse than the best of us? Is that enough? And actually, is that the RIGHT way to think about the subject? Will we always feel like we’re inferior and less worthy because we’re not as-good-as? Will we always feel slightly superior to some people? “I might be bad but I’m not a murderer, crack dealer, Republican, etc.” We say things like that and we feel better. I get that we need to sort of feel our place in the world and we need to compare ourselves to others as a barometer of where we are and how we’re doing. I do that all the time with my age group – how are other 38 year old American women doing? What should I have accomplished by now? What have I done better? Or worse, I see someone on television who’s my age and feel terrible about how much they’ve already done in their lives compared to mine.
Silly and useless. All of it.
If you’re happy overall – not WITH your life as the overall entire entity (although hopefully that as well) but IN your life – for most of your day-to-day, than you’ve succeeded. Nothing else matters. If you’re not, than you should figure out what in your life is making you unhappy and change that thing. I have to say, though, if what would make you happy is having more wealth/power/beauty/fame/IQ points than the other guy, I just don’t think you’ll keep that happiness for very long, even if you do find it. There will always ALWAYS be someone who was, is, or will be better than you at something. Period. However, the other side of that coin is that there will always ALWAYS be something you’re better at than any person who has ever lived – the trick is that thing changes with the person you’re comparing yourself to. You do something better than Barack Obama can do it. Better than Albert Einstein did.
People get so stuck on one or two traits and judge their whole lives by them! We have so many layers and the world has so many constantly shifting options and obstacles and opportunities that it is just ridiculous to think you’re worthless because you, for example, don’t have a million dollars or aren’t a beauty queen. There’s a lot of other crap you don’t have/can’t do/can’t be too – but there’s a lot more you DO have, CAN be, and CAN do. Why the hell would you focus on the first option?!?
by Shelly Schwimmer
is licensed under a
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at