Monday, February 24, 2014

Life and Leisure—and Everything in Between




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Oh that wonderful feeling when you hit a dry spell, and you can’t do nothing about it. So, rather than not writing at all today, what I will attempt to do is to write at least 300 words of drivel in a desperate pitch to try and maintain my posting schedule. Bear with me guys, there’s a chance that this post is going to run away from me.

The fact of the matter is, I have a ton of article ideas sitting in the back burner. The problem is that I don’t have the time or the inclination to research / work on them since, well, I was feeling under the weather over the weekend, and I just really haven’t had the time to actually get anything aside from work done.

I know, I know. That’s the usual complaint. Life gets in the way of living. But anybody past the age of 21 knows how true this is.

Work-till-you-drop-1

Taken from The Badass Blogger.

There are contrasting points of views when it comes to the whole life versus play argument, actually. Most people who live and breathe in the rank and file believe in balance; you work hard, and you play just as hard. This is, if we are to take my Facebook feed into account, the predominant attitude towards life. And it’s easy to see why; the whole concept of hard work being rewarded is comforting in the midst of the harsh realities we have to encounter day in and day out. Hard day at work? Dude, prop up your feet, pour yourself a cold one, and rest the night away. You’ve been burning your brain for the past few months on a project? Take a week off, man. Go to the beach. Get drunk. Unwind.

This is, at its core, very Pavlovian. The sight of the prize is enough to make you salivate. And if there’s anything we humans are capable of, it’s working hard when we’ve got our goal in sight. Runners and bikers go their fastest when the finish line is just off the horizon. The man adrift in sea for days gets a sudden surge of power when he sees land, and swims like a superhuman. They’re spent and tired when they reach their goal, and they’re not even sure if they’re going to achieve anything—they could still be overtaken at the finish line, or the island off the horizon might be a desert with very little chance of supporting life. But that doesn’t really matter.

At the other end of the spectrum, are the tycoons, the empire builders. The people with a consistent goal in their mind. These are the people who don’t compromise. One of the richest men in China spends no more than the equivalent of $20 a day. New entrepreneurs and CEOs go without sleep for days because they’re busy making money. This is how the elite roll, people, and they believe in postponing gratification for a much bigger pay off at a much later date.

These same people, instead of blowing their money on things like good booze, good food, and nice vacations, put it into retirement savings. They invest in stocks that pay decent dividends per month, thereby increasing their net earnings per annum. They wear cheap clothing, because expensive clothes are, well, expensive.

Perhaps the same analogy I used earlier can be applied here, expect that these people have better sights than the rest of us. These are the people who can see their goal from a mile away, and plan accordingly. But goals take a lot of work, and if you add that on top of your real work, I guess one can question if you really are living a life, or if you’re letting your life control the way you live.

I don’t know how to end this post properly without waxing cheesy or non-partisan, so I’m going to do myself a favor and cut my rambling here.

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