"The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself."
It’s just a word -- freedom.
And yet, so much is made of it.
We pursue it
We covet it
We write about it
We cherish it
We abhor those that don’t have it
But few people actually live it.
Perhaps it’s too tendentious a point but how many people are free to do what they like when they like?
If you think about it, there’s always something that gets in the way usually wrapped around money, responsibility or an acceptance of the norm, new or otherwise.
You would think, given our species, we would have the capacity and capability to choose one thing over another. But we don’t. In fact, for a lot of people, especially those people pursuing a career, they have so little freedom you wonder if the sacrifice is worth it -- you bargain away your life in the hope of obtaining security. Security from what? Finding out who you are?
For a long time, I thought I was possessed of the ability to choose by dint of the fact that I’d pursued a multiplicity of careers. But, when I look back now, I realise I had zero freedom not just because I was expected to turn up and do as I was told. No, it wasn’t that at all. It was more a case of not being able to be the truest version of me.
And for me, this is where the word freedom cuts deepest. It’s not just saying yes or no but it’s about becoming the most that you can be. If that means constantly living in fear...of failure...of losing everything, then so be it.
Think about it. If you were free, truly free, to work on becoming the best version of you, would it mean doing what you’re doing now?
I doubt it.