Low-Maintenance You

Meet low-maintenance me.

It’s the version of myself that requires little effort to ‘thrive’.

I could get by feeding it soapy TV shows, the simplest thoughts, junk food, mindless chatter, and routine activities.

Nothing challenging, no boundaries broken.

Easy, right?

But it’s also stunted, backward and unhelpful.

It doesn’t shine in meaningful conversations, it can’t help people grow and it definitely won’t make the world better.

It’s deeply rooted in selfishness, and selfishness hurts the selfish eventually.

Let me explain.

I measure my worth in the value I add – my contributions to the collective, what I do to improve what I’ve been given.

You see, life isn’t our personal playground. It’s less beach sand, more clay and we were designed to mould.

But we can’t find a blueprint for moulding anything useful when we’re idling away several notches below our potential.

While we’re busy playing around with our abilities, we’re also underdeveloping our abundant talent at living.

That’s the one gift we all have, life. We can use it well or squander it like fools do every damn day.

A wasted existence is nothing new. In fact, it’s the road frequently travelled.

All we have to do is nothing, or be underwhelming bags of bones reveling in the strangely satisfying futility of a purposeless existence.

That’s the tragedy, it’s happening all around us and we don’t have as long as we think we do to turn this ship around.

Last year, I relearned how quickly time passes.

I’m not sure it felt quick while I was trapped in an increasingly shrinking studio apartment, too worried to interact with anyone because “Hello, life-ending pandemic! Didn’t you get the memo?,” but I know now that time did fly even when I wasn’t having fun.

It’s correct to say that we’re here one minute and gone the next, literally.

And maybe all of living is pointless, but I’ve been given a life and I’d be damned if I go out without doing more than scratch the surface of the shit I can do with it.

But it takes work to make things work.

Low-maintenance me won’t do any of that. I’m done with him.

A meaningful life is high-maintenance.

It demands effort.

So I’m going to switch to a higher gear, expend myself on things that matter and maybe, just maybe, pull off some kind of miracle while I’m at it.

Sounds like a plan.