The philosopher Alan Watts once said that life is actually like a song and its sole purpose is to dance.
Watts pointed out that when you listen to a song, you do not dance in order to get to the end of it, but you dance in order to enjoy it.
However, this may not be how you live your life. Instead, you may rush through your moments, believing that there is always some goal you should achieve and that there is always something better.
In fact, there is a great underlying pressure on young people nowadays to “do something” with their lives and “be somebody” since “time is running out”.
The older you get, the more pressure there’s to meet modern standards of success that glorify youth, fame and wealth.
Additionally, the pressure to achieve greatness in life does fuel the desire to be active as well as execute creditable endeavours. Also, it does result in the fear of slipping into insignificance and anxiety about the future.
The scientific term gerascophobia means the constant fear of the future as well as fear of being unable to play an active role in society later in life.
In addition, Swiss psychoanalyst, psychologist and philosopher Carlo Strenger has thoroughly examined the fear of insignificance that plagues the world nowadays. According to Strenger, the source of this modern-day phenomenon is actually the value that society places on “global celebrity” by which fortune and fame are set as benchmarks for success.
He also explains that people nowadays are valued similarly to the global free market, which means that they are judged depending on their rating on the “different ranking-scales in the global infotainment system”.
For instance, Hollywood celebrities hold god-like status in society nowadays due to their commercial worth, influence, and proximity to fans through social media.
Strenger notes that we can solve this distorted vision by re-evaluating our principles and painting a different picture of what it means to live a fulfilling and meaningful life.
He also adds that society should own up to the common condition of fearing insignificance, as well as try to make life happier through emphasising self-knowledge, individuality, and creativity.
It definitely does not help that social media is totally obsessed with physical appearance and youth.
You should be able to stop feeling judged by others and by the world as a whole in order to be more successful and happier. In case you are able to do it, you can realize that you have actually wasted a number of your life’s moments for material goods or money. But, they’re only symbols of success to appease your ego, and your heart will always need something more intangible and meaningful. Remember that everything you do must have meaningful purpose.
You may also want to remain in full contact with the present as well as with reality itself. It is definitely the only way to understand time adequately and think about what to do with it properly. As soon as you begin to truly live, you will realize that you have much more to cherish and be grateful for.
What’s more, you’re taught that it’s simply in your nature to always strive for more. But, success and happiness usually remain unattainable and out of reach, so you might live life that has no chance of happiness or success. However, as the song is still playing, you can still break the trends and experience real success and happiness.