I am very conscious of being, what I call, one of the lucky generation. The offspring of a generation that fought in the greatest war in history and who came home determined that life was going to be different afterwards; for them and their children. My generation may have lived through the Cold War but we also had the welfare state with its concern for its citizens. Fifteen years later, the social and cultural explosion that was the 1960’s took place. They were good times to be alive with their optimism and hope for the future. They now seem light years away and the world appears to be more dangerous and this country more troubled. Now you may feel that you can do little about the state of the country or the world (not quite true), however, you can do something for yourself which may put more positivity into your own life. So, I write in a spirit of determined optimism in the hope that some of it might rub off.
How many people can say that they are truly at ease with themselves and/or their circumstances? The two, of course, not necessarily being the same thing although they may well be related to one another. I suspect that the answer is not as many as we would hope it to be. Whether it’s not having enough money, being in a relationship that isn’t as good as you’d like it to be, not being happy with your job or just feeling that life could be better, the chances are that most of us have experienced all or one of these at some time as I did for many years. Need it be that way? Well, if I’m any sort of example, the answer is a very clear no. My life is now very different from the way is was for me for many, many years. I’m doing things that I always dreamt of and am determined to do more; consequently, I have no plans to retire. After a series of failed relationships, I have been happily married for twenty years (I just hope my wife feels the same way) and live in an area that I love. Unfortunately, I still worry but, hey ho, you can’t have everything. In my defence, I do this a great deal less that I used to.
How has all this happened? Well, by taking a good look at myself and the reasons why I felt and behaved the way I did. Identifying the causes helped me to address the problems. The result is that I feel much more comfortable in my own skin. Among other things, that means that I don’t waste my energy on dealing with my personal history every day and have more to spend on doing those things I long dreamt of. In short, I complain less and do more by being more effective.
There appear to be no losers in this game. Yes, there are glass ceilings in this world but the hardest to crack are the ones we create for ourselves. Right now, I’m breaking through another one. I can tell by how difficult it is by how much I keep prevaricating. I will, however, persevere. There is no magic wand to wave; there is, however, just getting on with what you really want to do. This latter typified for me in a radio programme I listened to some years ago. An author was being interviewed and someone said. “I’ve always wanted to write but how do I do it?” His reply was straightforward. “You could start by just writing”.
What is it that they say about the longest journey starting with one small step?