We quit the 'rat race.'
It’s only taken us 39 years to realise that we’re taking part in a race that we can’t remember signing up for. We don’t even know why we're running. We probably got automatically enrolled when our parents registered our existence in the world. There might have been a box that had to be ticked and now we find ourselves huffing and puffing. We want to stop. We’re exhausted.
Let’s take a moment to reflect on this Wikipedia entry of Rat Race. Yes, we know, it’s not 100% reliable but this time it nails it:
A rat race is an endless, self-defeating, or pointless pursuit. It conjures up the image of lab rats racing through a maze to get the 'cheese' much like society racing to get ahead financially. The term is commonly associated with an exhausting, repetitive lifestyle that leaves no time for relaxation or enjoyment.
If this was common knowledge, we wonder how many people would willingly and knowingly join this race. Surely, this should be discussed at school.
The question really is, how much cheese do we need? We’ve done pretty well ourselves and managed to raise our cholesterol levels successfully. But, when is it enough? When do you stop running a race which prize is a repetitive, pointless pursuit that stops you from enjoying the cheese crumbs that you so frantically manage to collect? For us is now. We stop, right in the middle, just when we seem to be doing pretty well. Looking around, the rest are able to keep going. So we feel weird and lost and a bit terrified. Why don’t we have the drive and the energy to keep running? What’s wrong with us? What do we do now? As we slowly manage to catch our breath, we begin to realise that maybe there’s a way out of this pre-designed maze. Maybe, we can explore a new path that will be the reward itself. And maybe, we can stop yearning for the imposed cheese so we can decide what to look for. We want opportunities to be engaged and excited about what we do, to bring more lightness and joy to our lives, to be able to take action about things we are passionate about, to get to know ourselves better so we can relate to others more positively, to create a lifestyle that allows for time for relaxation and enjoyment, to be of support and inspiration to others who might be tempted to have a go at trying something different. To stop munching mindlessly. To live not just exist.
And off we go... chasing the sun.
If you’re reading this, our guess is that you might be starting to reconsider this race too and why you’re in it. Or maybe you’re a very supportive friend or family member with a great sense of guilt. Either way, we thank you for making it to the end of our first entry.
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