Put yourself in my shoes for a hot minute. You’re a young man working two jobs six days a week while completing a Bachelor of Business at the local university. During the day you’re a court reporter for a government subsidiary, recording judicial proceedings. By night you work the floor at a bottle shop, stocking fridges and shooting the shit with the local clientele. In between it all you somehow make time to attend (most) of your classes and keep up with assignments. You earn enough to get by but secretly you despise yourself. Why don’t you make time to write? Why don’t you enroll in short film courses instead of getting drunk with your friends every other weekend?
The reality is that my ‘sacrifice’ — enrolling and completing a business degree for my parents — made me a painful person to be around. I hated my classes, refused to connect with my classmates and couldn’t comprehend a future working in the city, wearing suits and thinking in numbers from nine to five. I was an emotional roller-coaster, prone to mood swings and guilty of investing time in romantic relationships that were not only unhealthy but brought out the worst in me. I wasn’t taking care of my diet, I was drinking too much and after a few years of this seemingly endless cycle I hit my breaking point.
When looking at your current choices, it’s easy to place the blame elsewhere, to leave the problem on someone else’s doorstep. Looking at my confession above, I could have easily laid the blame on my parents — it was their fault I was stuck finishing a degree I loathed. My friends were the reason for my interminable hangovers — dragging me out every weekend until the early hours. But these claims are baseless. My problem was myself. My choices. My inability to stand up for what I wanted most in life. In order to get healthy I needed to lay the blame on myself. I was the one that signed up for the bachelor degree. I was the one working two jobs that added no creative value to my life and left me feeling worthless.
No matter how much you believe your circumstances are unique or that your particular wrongs deserve special attention you need to leave it behind in order to move forward. Carrying these burdens will only keep you trapped in the past