Saturday, April 17, 2010

Soul Mate.

Two very simple words, one big punch in the guts for anyone single. But what is it about these two simple words that's really getting on my tits? I mean, is there really just one person out there for us? Are we meant to spend our whole lives looking for them? If that's the case then shoot me now and be done with it! I can't help but wonder, where does the pressure to find 'the one' come from, and why do we care so much?
It's not hard to answer the first part of my question, the second half seems to be a little more complex. For me the pressure is everywhere, just turn on your tv after prime time (when couples are blissfully sleeping away and us single loners are still active,) and you will be told to join a website so that you can find your soul mate. All you have to do is pay a nice monthly fee and a computer will do the rest! Simple! A perfect example of this being, a dating agency claiming to "Help you on your journey to find the one." Even whilst driving to uni and work I'm reminded of my loner status, bloody T2 lanes! However a perfect example of this 'pressure' came last week. Walking to coffee was brought to a halt when I was stopped by a girl that I used to work with, the small talk began and it wasn't long before the question was asked, "Seeing anyone special?" I replied with a simple "No," which may have been a lie, however I wanted a prompt change of subject. I was hopeful, however mistaken. She replied with "Oh it's okay, the right person's out there, and when you meet them you'll be so happy and better for it." Now repeat that quote channelling Ja'mie from Summer Heights High and you get the full effect. Needless to say she's in a relationship and has been for a while. Poor guy. I was so stunned I don't remember saying goodbye to her.
I hate to admit it, but I think she may have answered the second part of my question. Is it the promise of happiness and fulfillment that drives us to seek out this supposed soul mate? Once we have found 'the one,' do our lives become magically more meaningful and suddenly validated? Love can't actually be like Love Actually! Then again, even Bradshaw finds Mr Big.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Switch off.

If you were to stop look and listen carefully at your surroundings, 2010 looks and sounds like the Harbour Tunnel in am peak hour. Everyone wants to cut ahead, we sit white knuckling while Kyle and Jackie O pollute our minds and we long for the weekend exit to appear. But we keep driving and somehow that exit eludes us, the weekend comes and to-do lists are created, social networking takes over (a job in itself) and uni work is caught up on. I cant help but wonder, what happened to making time for yourself?

But how do we create this time? What does it take to have time just for yourself? This much I've learned: you don't wait for something to give, you give yourself. Yes it's hard, but creating your own boundaries is the most important thing one can do. Sunday used to do it for us, the shops weren't open! Can we turn off our phones? Can we stop emailing on the weekend? Even better, can we go two days without Facebook? Okay admittedly that last one even made me a little nervous. But when I say making time for yourself, I do mean yourself and not those little crutches. Reading an article on the weekend gave me the idea for this post. Apparently Google treats its employees once a week with '2o Percent Day,' a half day where all phones and computers are switched off and employees work on their own personal creative projects. Google News and G mail were both born from this forced down time. One of my best friends Rob has even adopted this idea. Lawyer by day, Extreme Kayaker by night, well, Sunday mornings. As inspiring as Rob and that article are, creating time for myself has been a pretty weak effort so far. Sneaky emails, Facebook checks and my phone lasting 30 minutes switch off time proves this. Oh not to mention the copious amount of uni work that was put off due to the viewing of Underbelly and just about any marathon on Arena. Isnt Arena the best?

But it's time to get serious. I do realise that not everyone can wake up and tell their boss they're not coming in on Saturdays anymore. However even if it's 20 minutes where you cut contact with the world and take the time to gain perspective, dream, be creative and set your own boundaries. I think we'll be better for it. Let me know how you go.