When Busy Turns Beastly: Finding Your Footing

Flazingo Photos
Flazingo Photos

There was this one thing my father told me. I understood it, but I never truly comprehended it. I knew it, but never experienced it. I saw it, but never recognised it, until I turned 16.

He told me that life would only get more difficult.

When the supreme stress of society seeps into our lives, when 32% of the working population finds it hard to let go of work and a whopping 51% mentioned that their boss expects them to stay contactable while away, it is not demanding to see why my father had said the words he said.

Today’s world is laborious and inextricably relentless, and the perverse nature of the capitalist society simply demands more and more.

Isn’t this a clear indication of a paramount crunch ready to escalate?

The 21st century lifestyle sure isn’t easy to appease. Think protracted working hours. A plethora of work. What’s more horrifying is the constant haunt of work even when you’re away and supposedly on vacation. (Cue dictionary definition of vacation: a period of suspension of work, study, or other activity, usually used for rest or recreation.)

Indubitably, this should worry us. The fact that people are incapable of leaving behind the stresses of work should not be taken as a sacrifice in the chase for productivity. Such a lifestyle would seem atypical in the days of the past, but yet today the norm dictates as much.

The virulent bug of stress and tireless work has infected no less. Children, teenagers and adults alike, have one sole ambition, which is to reach for far more than they can stretch. Everyone is plagued with the “potency powerhouse” disease and is numb to any other form of delectation. It is verily sad to witness young kids blinded by cutthroat rivalry, failing to appreciate the simpler, sweeter joys in life.

All through my elementary and junior high years, I can safely say that I haven’t yet met anyone who can exemplify sanguinity and nonchalantly say, “I’m here for the ride, not the game.” I know, to survive in this world, competition is indispensible. But just like how stress is a knife that cuts on both ends, competition is too.

I’m guessing many of you are well aware of the radically differing Asian parenting style compared to the Western approach. Or rather, it’s just the Asian culture. I have always been surrounded by a bunch of terrifyingly over-accomplished friends, and to achieve that, it evidently comes at a price. I see many of them shuttling to and fro between school and tuition, then proceeding to music, art, dance, abacus, and any other enrichment classes you can think of. Such a hard-pressed life prompted me to wonder: is it possible to live past a day?

Well, yes. And there are plenty of living examples out there to prove that. But the question is: are these youths really okay?

Well, no. Eight hours of sleep should be a given, but yet in our world seven hours seem like a luxury, and basic necessities of rest are considered lavish.

And perhaps for those who have aged more than ourselves, the hustle and bustle of our capitalist society becomes ever more striking. From my observation, there has never been a meal where my dad has successfully avoided laying his fingers on the diminutive 5 inch screen positioned ever so strategically by his plate. Not that he wants to, but when it incessantly vibrates you can’t help but involuntarily scroll to see what the fuss is all about lest you run the risk of losing your bankroll.

Many say we need a technological detox, but in actual fact what we really need is a lifestyle detox. We all are in dire need of a legitimate vacation, one that is justifiable of our periodic mental drudgery. If this is not rectified any sooner, I’m afraid society will then be teemed with a surfeit of deranged nutcases suffering from satirical mental tailspin. Bolstering society’s demands unremittingly is not the way to go for sustainability, but it seems like keeping your balance in life is now a thing of the past.

#Throwback. Throwback to the time when the pace of life was much slower, technology not as advanced and economies not as thriving. Have we lost it all, notably the artless simplicity of life?

We often describe our capitalist world as a dog-eat-dog society, but the unbefitting nature of such a term seems to be portrayed solely by its name.TC mark

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