I have been a big fan of Leo Babauta for several years now and have said so on this blog. I think his book THE POWER OF LESS is fantastic. He was a big inspiration to me and I think he was a very wise man. He probably still is, but I am beginning to wonder. Lately he has been saying some things that make me go “huh?”.
His latest blog article is a perfect example. If you cut out just a few sentences, you will have a very wise and reasoned position that I almost completely agree with. However, he just takes it over the edge by saying some ridiculous things (in my opinion) and ruins his credibility. I don’t believe he is the superhuman he makes himself out to be. He is thousands of times more successful than I am. I’m a pipsqueak and he’s the creator of one of the most successful blogs out there. I grant all of that for the record.
I’m going to quote extensively from his article, but please read it all here. He says:
I’ve notice that in the past, like many people, I was always wishing I was doing something different, thinking about what I would do in the future, making plans for my life to come, reading (with jealousy) about cool things other people were doing.
It’s a fool’s game.
Many of us do this, but if you get into the mindset of thinking about what you *could* be doing, you’ll never be happy doing what you actually *are* doing. You’ll compare what you’re doing with what other people (on Facebook and Twitter, perhaps?) are doing. You’ll wish your life were better. You’ll never be satisfied, because there’s *always* something better to do.
Amen brother Leo!
Washing dishes can be as great as anything else, if you decide to see it that way. You’re in solitude, which is a beautiful thing. If you do it mindfully, washing dishes can be pleasant as you feel the suds and water in your hands, pay attention to the dish and its texture, notice your breathing and thoughts. It’s meditation, it’s quiet, it’s lovely.
Well maybe not “as great as anything else”, but we get the point. Make something good out of it since you are doing it anyway. You can make it “pleasant”.
You can say the same of anything. Driving to work? Enjoy the solitude, the chance to be alone with your thoughts, or to listen to music you love, to see the world around you. In a meeting with co-workers? Pay attention to how people talk and interact, learn about the human mind, see yourself in everyone around you, learn to love anyone no matter who they are, practice giving up expectations of who people should be or what this meeting should be like.
Make the best of whatever situation you find yourself in. Learn something positive from every thing you do. Give up expectations, etc. Sure good advice when you find yourself doing something that actually isn’t “as great as anything else”.
Life will suck if you are always wishing you’re doing something else.
I couldn’t agree more.
I’m always where I want to be, doing what I want to be doing.
I don’t believe that for one second.
Instead, I’ve adopted the mindset that whatever I’m doing right now is perfect.
I call bullshit on that.
There’s nothing I’m ever doing that isn’t the most incredible thing on Earth.
Bullshit to the power of 10.
If everything was the most incredible thing you wouldn’t know it because you wouldn’t have anything to compare it to that was less than “the most incredible thing on earth”. Think about it.
There is wisdom in this article if you just leave out the hyperbole about everything is always perfect.
Sometimes life does suck and it’s OK. You don’t have to dwell on it. You can experience the suckiness and then quickly move on. You can try to draw a lesson out of it. Life is messier than you pretend. I say “pretend” in all seriousness because I frankly don’t believe what you say. I believe you believe it sort of, but what you are doing and what you are saying aren’t the same thing. Get real Leo, it’s OK. You’re a human being and your life isn’t perfect or the most incredible thing on earth – even to you. You can admit that sometimes what happens and what you are doing sucks. Please give us the good stuff in the future and leave out the nonsense.
Best Regards from a long-time admirer,
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