“I would rather be ashes than dust!
I would rather that my spark should burn out
in a brilliant blaze than it should be stifled by dry-rot.
I would rather be a superb meteor, every atom
of me in magnificent glow, than a sleepy and permanent planet.
The function of man is to live, not to exist.
I shall not waste my days trying to prolong them.
I shall use my time.” -Jack London
From time to time, I get in a rut – stuck in the monotony of day to day life. I wake up, do my day’s tasks, go to bed and repeat. It is at these points that life seems to become increasingly meaningless as it is hard to derive value from routine, at least for myself. So then why does this always seem to happen? Is it because if nothing else routine is comfortable, or at least familiar?
It is at these times that I must examine my mindset. Am I living life to the best of my ability or am I just going through the motions? My response varies from time to time but what I have found is that during the periods when I am ‘just going through the motions’, I am typically unaware of the life that is around me, in fact, in some ways I embrace the monotony. Yet, we have not been put on this planet to live life like repetitive robots, doing the same thing every single day.
When I realize I am in such a rut I stop what I am doing and walk outside. Upon doing so, I begin to realize the wonder that goes unnoticed daily. Take a look around sometime and find a small animal, such as a squirrel. Look at how amazing this creature is, how effectively they move, all the unique behavior it exhibits, how cute they really are. Or go find a tree you cannot wrap your arms around and think about how old that tree must be. Think about what that tree has witnessed in its life, it is remarkable when you think about it.
I have found nature is not monotonous, there is always something more to be discovered. So if you are in a rut, and life seems to be slowly crawling along, take 20 minutes out of your day and go for a walk. Discover the life and beauty that is just beneath your nose, go break the monotony!