This is what I did not know in my 20’s. That I would come to dislike the adrenaline-rush that made me feel so good.
In our twenties, we feel competent
We have smashing time. Suddenly we have a little money. We set ourselves up independently. We take on responsibility at work. We feel omnipotent.
We are in, a way. We have more energy than our jobs demand. And we throw ourselves into everything with gusto.
Until one day,
. . . the story changes. We burn out. We wake up in the morning so tired that the only thing to do is to sit quietly in the sun, if we can find it. We are too tired to read. We are too wearied to put up with the banality on the TV.
From that day forward, we are wiser, if sadder
We resist the adrenaline-rush. We put off being totally involved in anything because we know the withdrawal is not worth the excitement and the buzz.
We also become skeptical about what is accomplished while we are ‘high’. We come to agree with poet, David Whyte. We are not nice people when when we are moving so fast that we trample over people who are moving slowly.
But we are also restless
When we are undecided, when we are still on the plains of ‘wish‘ and are still to cross the famed Rubicon river to the land of ‘intent‘, we feel restless and doubt we are achieving anything at all.
But does our restlessness have good cause?
I am not sure if anything gets done or nothing gets done when we resist the urge to become charged-up and driven. To my knowledge, no one has every compared our output in the two states.
Goal setting research has shown a more limited result. When our attention is focused solely on one goal, the goal is achieved. Hardly surprising, is it?
We should be worried about more
The bigger question is what happens to other goals when we are focused on only one of the many things that are important to us. What happens to everything else – including our health and the health of people around us?
In our thirties, we begin to get an inkling . . .
. . . that we should pick our adrenaline-rush carefully.
How old do we have to be before we learn to balance our lives?
Do we ever learn the art of achieving balance?
Is it true that we achieve less when are lives are balanced? Or is just that we feel cold in the shadow of a helter-skelter adrenaline-fueled chase of a goal?
Who is able to resist starting towards an overarching goal that destroys all else? Who is able to go further and to dismiss such goals altogether and stop them casting a shadow over a life where all our different parts have equal call?