Creating my own reality
I've spent most of my life doing two things – escaping from reality & trying to live in it. I alternate between the two, trying my best to run away from everything that is real and feeling miserable trying to cope with what is real. It was not a very happy existence.
They say when you hit the bottom of the pit, there is no where else to go except upwards. I was feeling totally miserable with my existence, feeling that nobody ever understood me, almost resigned that my life was just destined to be a crappy one. I have tried everything I could to make things work for me, to make people who care for me happy, to survive in reality.
One day, I simply gave up.
The honest truth was that, I have reached my bottom of the pit, decided that my life was never going to get better, and the only reason why I did not take my life then was because I was a believer of karma and I really did not think it was a good idea to repeat what I have gone through this lifetime in my next life. That was a horrible thought, to go through all that pain and suffering once again – ironically this kept me alive.
I had decided that since my existence was already going to be totally screwed up, then I might as well just play along with it. Since I have already been through a pile of shit, it would not make much difference to go through more. From that moment of realisation, I made the conscious decision to stop trying to make people happy by living my life the way they want and to live my life the way I want, since the worst that could happen to me was to screw it up further, which by then I was already somewhat used to it. The people that care for me, can continue to remain unhappy, as I have given my best and they did not seem much happier, in fact, I was only making them feel worse.
It was like a mathematical equation. One person being happy (myself) > all of us being unhappy together.
I quit my job, went on a month's long backpacking trip with my partner, which opened my eyes to the possibility of me being truly happy. During the trip we had met different people. There was the guesthouse owner who made her fortune selling rice, and was excitedly pointing out to us which property belonged to her. We were strangers, but she simply offered her help when I mentioned that we needed to extend my visa. She was rich, but unfamilarly real. She cried when we left, oafter spending only 2 days with us.
There was another lady we met staying at another guesthouse. She taught us how to ride a motorbike (for free), we gave her plenty of smiles and she gave us plenty of laughter. There were other backpackers who did not seem to be bothered by the outer-reality of the world, choosing to travel and live in the moment. There were plenty of people who did not bother with having a job and climbing social/corporate ladders. I have finally found that part of the world, the world that was contented with simple pleasures of life and did not equate success with having a life-long iron ricebowl.
I have actually learnt rather retardedly, that having nomadic tendencies was not wrong, trying to be happy was not wrong, and not being interested in the material world was not wrong. There were other people like me, I was just blinded by the reality that exists in my own country.
That was my first step to that knowledge that reality is relative.
What is reality?
It is only defined by your own experience, along with the experiences of people around you. For me, I had to live in the reality created by the people who were with me. That cold, harsh reality that they painted for me. That I must have a job, I must live my life the way 'everyone' else seems to be living, or else I will not survive. I had to listen to countless "...but this is reality!". It is their reality that they have to be stuck in jobs they do not love, because everyone else's reality says so, or your survival will be threatened. I was sucked into their reality, living in a life I felt that did not fit me. I was made to feel like it was a crime to not want to be in that reality.
I had to listen to countless "...but this is reality!".
I was their idealist, their escapist, to them I was in denial of reality. If I had a dollar for every shake of the head I've encountered so far in my life, I would have been a millionaire.
To people living in rural areas, planting their vegetable, leading a really simplistic life everyday, was their reality. I came across old couples, young children, living in really poor conditions. Yet, they had the sparkle in their eyes.
It gave me a lot to ponder. I began asking myself a lot of questions.
- We're all individuals, we're all unique. How come there's so many of us try to live like the majority of the others?
- If everyone of us is unique, why is it so unacceptable that some people are happy to be tied to their iron ricebowls, and some people are better off being a floater?
- Why do we try so hard to disown our individuality when it should be protected and celebrated?
For my whole life I've been consciously trying to disown that unique self of mine, and I have developed a low self-esteem for all the criticism I received by trying to be myself. I felt unloved, and I thought I did not deserved to be loved, because I was creating so much unhappiness for the people who loves me. I hated myself for being the person I was, I hated myself for not being able to 'face reality', for not being like the rest of the world I know.
Discovering that reality is relative was the key turning point in my life.
After so many years of conditioning to believe otherwise, it was not easy. Even till today I still get the little niggles of self-doubt, but I started to learn how to love myself and appreciate my own individuality. I am who I am, and I am also what I believe.
It is so simple, yet very few people realise that:
- Why should anybody believe in you if you don't believe in yourself?
- Same goes for self-love. One does not find true love unless you accept and love yourself for who you are.
The moment I gave up on reality, I discovered and created my own.
My own designed reality now consists of:
- Waking up whenever I want
- Doing the work that I love
- People that love me finally accepting me for the person I am, once they saw me truly happy (which occured because I started to live for myself)
- Still not having a job
- On my way to being a global nomad – traveling and working wherever and whenever I want
- Finding and being with my true love (which will only happen if you believe true love exists)
You can create your own reality, if only you believe in it in the first place.