“The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a common place thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow candles exploding like spiders accross the stars”. Jack Kerouac, On the Road
It has been years since that quote and that book made a huge impression on me. The carefree quest for constant discovery. An endless roadtrip, with a countless array of likeminded, stimulating companions. No plans, no vision, no next steps, resolutions or goals. Nothing holding them back.
I never aspired to be a Beatnik nor a nomad. But there was a big part of me wanting to be, in some way, a person who would recall the above words not with regret, but with a sense of accomplishment, as a recurring signpost during the big gig that is life. To some this may come very naturally, to others it is a more considerable challenge, myself in the latter category. It is a challenge because we all have ambitions, wants, perceptions as to what our life should be like, and what ‘success’ we should achieve. There are also expectations of those around us, and society as a whole. With all that as a heavy load upon your shoulders, it is hard to lift your head, pump out your chest and say “I know what I want, and this is not IT”.
Having a secure job, a furnished and comfortable apartment, maybe a company car are all elements which often create a sense of security and easiness, which is hard to just abandon. And so people spend 15 or 20 years in that same job, wishing a countless number of times they could just get away. Regret and frustration; and that is not the way it was meant to be.
I am happy to say that I have not gotten too far away from the place where I wanted to be. Having achieved the ‘comfortable life’ status, I was burning to leave it behind, and experience something else, be free and creative. And I did it!
Be desirous. Be creative. Just come up with a way to create your own space, give it some time and you will see promising results.
As a former manager, a director even, I am looking forward to pumping out four 12hour shifts this week. Running as many kms as possible. Cooking beans, grains and other healthy stuff. And spending plenty of time with my young family. All stress free.