I should be a multi-platinum rock star’s muse living in a penthouse in Paris with my own massive following of adoring fans who quote my fabulously inspirational words on a daily basis.
I should also have the body of a goddess, hair that’s shampoo-ad ready even when I wake up in the morning and perfectly shaped eyebrows.
But I’m not and I don’t.
Instead, the closest I get to rock stars is my playlist and I’ve only seen a photograph of a Parisian penthouse. I do get quoted sometimes, but certainly not from adoring fans – usually its one of the little [or slightly littler] people in my life who basically start sentences with ‘but you said . . .’
As for my body, well, let’s just leave it at ‘not everything has stayed in the same place’.
But where’s the line? How able are you to draw it – the one between should and is? Is fantasy a good thing or a painful reminder of what isn’t? Do we really have the potential we think we have and do we actually have the right to dream?
I’m told often that I should be earning X at the very least. Yes, of course I should. In fact I should be earning XX because I’m incredibly brilliant. But hey, there’s not much of a market for that, so I’m actually only earning Y. Do I then live within my ‘is’ or careen off on an XX spending spree simply because I should?
Don’t get me wrong; I’m all for going out there and doing the thing. But there does need to be a balance somewhere. Just think of those poor saps that enter singing competitions – the ones who sound like a mix between Kermit the frog, a strangled parrot and one of those death metal screamer guys. Who encouraged them to try? Surely, if you are living in a constant state of delusion, somebody in your life needs to let you know?
Isn’t it better to live in the ‘is’ rather than being perennially dissatisfied with yourself and your life?
How can we bring fantasy into reality in a way that truly works? Does being seated in reality make for a happier life? Must we only expect a watered down ‘should’?
I’m not convinced that belying all fantasy is good for the psyche – perhaps ‘could’ is a better option that ‘should’. ‘Could’ kind of puts the whole thing in your lap and give you a choice in the matter. Like ‘I could be a multi-platinum rock star’s muse living in a penthouse in Paris with my own massive following of adoring fans who quote my fabulously inspirational words on a daily basis, but I’ve chosen not to be.’
Re-framing your ‘is’ into a choice may just be the way to create that line between fantasy and reality in a way that doesn’t break you and lead you down a path of dissatisfaction. It could even push you towards making choices that look more like your ‘shoulds’.