Be Your Own Oracle

The BBC newscaster, in her twin-set and pearls, comes on-screen to inform you of a groundbreaking new study – one which demonstrates beyond belief that people who eat an average of two squares of dark chocolate every full moon have a 15% percent smaller chance of developing an ingrown toenail.

Great. But what I am I supposed to do with that?

Your hairdresser asks you if you work out and when you say “No, not really,” she spends seven minutes detailing her cousin’s ex-boyfriend’s calisthenics routine – he used to do four press-ups every five days and in no time he had arms like cobras.

Brilliant. I didn’t ask.

And your best friend doesn’t understand how you can have trouble sleeping – so long as she has her phone playing a true crime podcast, and her computer playing Pink Floyd Live at Pompeii, she’s out like a light.

Fine. But when I tried it I tossed and turned all night, in and out of nightmares involving Dave Gilmour and the unsolved mysteries of unsolved mysteries…

If you sometimes feel like the world is little more than a constant reminder of everything you’re supposed to be doing, or not doing, or already are doing but apparently not in the way you’re meant to do it… you’re not alone. Me too.

My advice? Double down on how you’re living now. Plant your feet more firmly where they currently stand. Learn to be comfortable with just exactly who you are and how you do. Build your house on the rock.

And should you then feel a genuine desire to try something new, to shake things up, to grow, to stretch yourself as a human being, then go for it. You’ll probably fare better too, because of your strong foundation.

But if what you’re motivated by is ‘something someone said’, which gave you a fear of missing out, and a fear of not keeping up with the Jones’s, and a fear that you’re getting life wrong…

Ignore it. Stick with your own path.

“Quod ali cibus est aliis fuat acre venenum.”

(What is food for one man may be bitter poison for others.)

Titus Lucretius Carus (1st century BC)

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