I write often here about gratitude and how important it is to living a rich, full life. If you don’t appreciate what you have — even if it’s not a lot relative to those around you — it’s impossible to be happy. Impossible!
If you’re reading this you’re rich. You have access to an unbelievably sophisticated electronic device and this insane thing called the Internet. You have enough free time to indulge in the crap I write here, and you CAN READ. You are richer than 99 percent of the world’s population. Don’t even try to argue with me on this point because I will beat your ass down.
And yet, just like you, I find myself getting all strung out and stressed about some inane thing. Is my kid signed up for enough extracurricular actives? Too many? Is my home decor dated? Did I eat too many carbs yesterday? First World Problems these are. It is not just that we are all a bunch of neurotic, over-fed, under-exercised, spoiled citizens of the Western World. You need stress — early humans experienced lived in constant anxiety, worry for lack of food, attack of ferocious animals, landslides, hurricanes, floods and plagues. Now, we have so much control over our lives that we invent stupid crap to worry about. And when you luxuriate in that stupid crap, you waste so much precious time, energy and the patience of those who have to listen to you blab about it.
So I’m starting a movement. Every Friday I will post here my own stupid first world problems that ate away irreplaceable time and energy. I invite you to do the same. Have a look inward and ask yourself: What kept me up last night? What did I post on Facebook? How many hours did I spend complaining to friends that you can’t find just the right picture frame, or about the declining service at your favorite restaurant. Post in the comments. Post on Facebook, Twitter or bring it up at the school bus hangout. Laugh at yourself. Giggle at your indulgence and frivolity. Then refocus. What is really important? What will you do to spend energy and time on those things? A little bit of self-awareness goes a long way. Together, let’s make the world and our own lives better places to hang out, one First World Friday at a time. #FWF
This week I spent stupid sums of time:
Worrying that in the professional photos I had taken I look like a fat sow with a horse face.
That the mold in my shower grout is permanently imbedded and I should have it replaced but can’t muster the energy or money to get that done.
That my kids won’t go to camp all summer and will be permanently scarred because kids in New York all go to camp and those are some of their most treasured childhood memories.
OK! Now your turn!
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