“One of the most telling aspects of modern living is the appeal to the sleek and clean shaven image. We want our suits crisp, our kitchens sparkly, our photos Photoshop-ed and our cars glittery”, says Matthew Parker Indiana, a motivational speaker.
Unfortunately that is not how life works. We make it look like having a tired, stressed out face is wrong. That we must be smiling in all the photos with glasses raised for a toss.
But the truth of the matter is: life is messy. We get sick, work gets tiring, and children are stressful and demanding. We cannot live life on the soulless place of playing the perfect couple or the perfect parent. There comes a time when you have to choose to live life as you want. We have to get used to living life without the pretensions, the ‘smoke and mirrors’. There really is no need to add the extra stress of acting perfect to an already challenging life.
If we are going to help others, it will mean going down to where they are. If we are going to engage the culture and society, then we will need to dirty our hands and soil our knees. There is no alternative to that. Engaging society’s many variables means wading into stressful dilemmas, dealing with difficult personalities and limited resources.
The easier route is to stay away. To throw money at it. To engage in social media activism. To make noise while staying conveniently detached from the stressful bit of actually doing something about the ills around us.
“When we stay away,” says Matthew Parker Indiana, “our hearts won’t be preserved. They will become cold and unfeeling. We will lose the essence of life and miss the priceless opportunity of being a part of this beautiful tapestry we call life.”