Walking the Line

In life, most of us walk the very thin line between our dreams and complacency. We first find ourselves on this line because it just seems to be the practical thing to do at the time. We plan to walk it...keeping a foot planted a little more firmly on one side until we are able to make the jump to the other...the side of our dreams; the side that we want to be on. Sadly, many of us continue to travel that line in the same manner for the rest of our existence. We never make that jump, and the reason we don't can be attributed to one factor...fear.
On one side of the line, we see our lives as they are now. We see our jobs that give us a routine paycheck. We see our mundane responsibilites. We see our work tasks, and our commutes full of honking traffic. We see all of these things that have just come the norm in our daily living. We become used to these things. They are "comfortable" for us. Before we know it, we have become complacent, and the things that we told ourselves were temporary become mandatory. Or at least we think they do.
Merriam-Webster defines complacency as
1. : self-satisfaction especially when accompanied by unawareness of actual dangers or deficiencies
2. : an instance of usually unaware or uninformed self-satisfaction
Complacency has a way of pulling the wool over our eyes. When we begin to get depressed about feeling unfulfilled in our jobs, it's there to point out the paycheck that gets us by, or the nice retirement we will have 50 years down the road. When we get the urge to find true happiness, complacency says, "Hey, things are working out okay now though, aren't they?" If complacency were a person, it would be the friend that comes over after your boyfriend breaks up with you and shoves ice cream down your throat rather than reassuring you that there are better things to come.
Is complacency an entirely negative state of mind? No. But, does it perhaps hinder all of those goals and dreams that you used to want more than anything? Definitely. So many times in life, we take an alternate route in hopes of using it to gain access to what we believe our calling is. Some may find a stronger calling through that route, and leave the old goals behind. Some actually use that route to make their planned goals possible. Still though, there those that get stuck, and remain so because it's the easy thing to do. While the latter is definitely not what I would refer to as failure, it still comes along with a neverending nagging sensation that refuses to stop reminding you of how far you are from your dreams.

Let's go back to that fear that I mentioned earlier. Afterall, it is what keeps those of us that become stuck in our balancing act. What are some of the fears that keep us from taking a running leap to the other side of the line? When I asked myself this question, this is what I came up with.

1. Money
This is a double sided problem. A steady job is needed to pay the bills. Without it, home would be a cardboard box. Also, if you're anything like me...your calling in life is something that doesn't fork over the dough. If you want to write, or start your own business, or anything like that...you have to have a significant nest egg, which doesn't really exist when you can barely cover your expenses as it is.

2. Lack of Support
It's never an ego boost when you tell someone what your dream job is and they look at you like you're insane. While there are most likely people in your life that encourage you to keep fighting for your goal, there are also those that are going to tell you to stay where the stability is. We don't want to disappoint the people who mean the most to us.

3. I'm Young
People tell me all the time, "You're young. It's okay if it doesn't happen now. Worry about it later." I agree that being young is a plus in the sense that there is a lot of opportunity ahead, but it's a negative in the sense that you may wait to worry about it in five, or even ten years. Why not start working towards it now? Think of all of the opportunities that could be missed in those few years that you are stuck behind a desk making phone calls and doing paperwork.

The main reason behind this post is this: I have been really frustrated with myself lately. I'm unhappy, and I know what I want in terms of a career. I've been feeling stuck between a rock and a hard place, and then I realized, I haven't exactly been trying too hard to change my circumstances. It's not going to be easy. I just truly need to use the job I have now to help me get to the place I'm striving for. It will take a lot of prayer and extreme penny pinching to save money. Still, that will be better than waking up 20 years from now and wondering why I'm still not where I want to be. It's never too early or late to work towards a goal. There's no reason that anyone should have to walk the line forever.

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