On Self-Reflection

I’m relatively bad at self-reflection. Which seems like a strange statement to make for a man who posts a weekly blog on his website about his thoughts, but here’s how I’ll justify it: I often write my feelings down, but I seldom return to these written thoughts to think about them. I’m starting to acknowledge that this is a weakness of mine and that it’s relatively easy to fix. Like everything in life, you just need to ‘do the work’ (hello objectivism, see Ayn Rand for more details), but as always, talking about the work is easier than doing the work, hence this blog post.

In a vague attempt to remedy this I spent a couple of minutes today diving in to my diary from a couple of years ago. I stumbled upon this entry from Wednesday, June 28th, 2017 and thought it might be an interesting thought experiment to explore. Short preface: it’s interesting to see which aspects of my life have remained the same (general disdain for social media, references to coffee/running/Hemingway) and which parts have shifted (ie, wow I sound super cynical here… was I having a bad day?). Without further ado, here is 2017 me.

It’s the end of the term. A magical time where everyone struggles for one last push, rolling out of bed at the last alarm, barely making it to school on time. What are you doing on the break? Not much, but secretly just doing what I do for 95% of the year, lie in bed with the latest comedy TV show and a cup of coffee. I rise late and live my millennial life-style, check the bank account and chuckle at the thought that it never increases. Spend some time practicing drums then maybe work on my latest pet project, half-arsing my way through a half-marathon.

I might put some thought towards the next school term and some prep that I should be doing, but invariably time gets sucked into a whirlwind of indecision and last minute plans, and the next thing I know I’m fully-immersed in the Australian bush and going for a hike in the Grampians. If it was summer I’d probably be on a beach or, possibly if my friends are all busy, back in bed with a movie. It’s a laissez-faire affair, a beautiful wicked fantasy as Kanye might put it. We get through life and accumulate belongings, and some of us get more than others, but most of us get just enough to leave a crumbling house full of shit behind for our kids. Somewhere along the chain it went wrong, and the idea of gentlemen explorers ala Hemingway got left by the wayside in favour of mindless accumulation. It’s all good though, he was a womanizing alcoholic, so hardly something to aspire towards. He made it look good though... I think?

This constant romanticising of other’s lives has become a fully-borne obsession for many. Social media is the epitome of self-hatred, where we post photos of ourselves achieving great heights and then side-step out of the frame back to our shitty shitty lives. We view everyone else through a lense of accomplishment. At least it gives us something to talk about I guess. I saw you were in Sydney last week. Yeah, it looked pretty good, I’ve just been stuck here at work. Well yeah, I did get out on the weekend, and that $20 lunch special was pretty tasty, but it was really the instamatic filter that  made it look good.

I’ve subscribed to a new social media affair, deciding that my current diet of Facebook wasn’t enough. Now I’m across a variety of platforms: instagram, youtube, snapchat, I’ve even got a twitter account languishing in the background. Where does my happiness come from? And where does the social part of social media come to the forefront? Currently I’m stuck in the media part of it, and like any Bachelor of Arts media presentation it’s all getting sucked into a wave of wank.

This week’s FWF is with my good friend Vinny. It’s also part of a podcast called The Worst Gig of My Life (need to include a hefty language warning as I swear quite a lot on this one). If you’re interested in hearing me speak about the sordid underbelly of touring Australia, have a listen!

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