The holiday season, for me, has traditionally, at least for the last ten or so years, has been a time when mostly difficult times occur for me. Save a few great years with some great people, my recent holiday past has been just a pile of hot steaming shit. Three of the last five years has marked a breakup with someone who, I at least, thought was special; top it off with MAJOR financial difficulty and the holidays are anything BUT a time to reflect and be happy with life.
From the outside looking in, you should say that my life, in particular, it wholly contingent on the choices I have made. If you said this, I would agree with you, without a doubt. My life, as it is, has been because of the choices I've made. With all of that said, my sense of entitlement will sometime take over my sense of incentive, and into the doldrums I go. Everyone, at their core, deserves to have everything they want; life is about living, not just being alive. We all deserve to have what our heart desires and we also owe it to ourselves to understand what is truly important to us. The universe though, knows best and most of the time, it will throw you into a tailspin and make us re-evaluate what it is we are doing. Entitlement, is, at its core, in direct conflict with motivation and hard work. Entitlement will make you think that no matter what, the choices you make should have no bearing on the achievements that you deserve. It will make you believe that somehow, you should have already put in the work and any other work you do toward your goals would be for naught. As we all know, this is untrue, because as the old Karate maxim says, "A glass of hot water will become cold if hot water is not continually added".
When I think of incentive, I think of hard work as being the cornerstone of any incentive based plan. I think that life, in general, is an incentive based plan. The harder you work, the better you treat your fellow man and the more appreciative you are of the things that you have achieved, the more you will reap. Unfortunately, that doesn't always work out for everyone, at least not right away. I know I have felt that way before and I also know that no matter what, the expectation of what I believe I deserve will always set me back.
When you pit incentive vs. entitlement, you have two inverse terms; they are exact opposites and will repel each other. This statement speaks to the theme of this blog entry because although I have lost much around the holidays and there could never be worse timing, there has to be a message. There must be. I'm starting to believe that I am being pushed to achieve what I want, exactly on my own time. To do my thing and not be swayed by popular opinion and also to not worry about how my actions will affect others; the decisions I make will not always be popular. I also believe that now, more than ever, my choices need to be correct in regards to my future; I have to be this way, as living day to day has done nothing for me except to pass the time. I also understand that the choices I make and the mistakes I make really need to be considered as any small mistake could cause huge ripple in my life that could cost me dearly in the future. As has already been proven, the mistakes I make rear their ugly head to really teach me a lesson. A lesson, until now, that Ive never understood.
In the big picture, I need to have enough sense to sense when entitlement is taking over and when incentive needs to be directly in my cross hairs. Lets hope that is always, from here on out in this life.