The Death of Hardship
There is a noticeable trend of entitlement among our youth. Perhaps this has been the perception of preceding generations but one can only imagine that today’s comforts lead us farther away from our Survival DNA necessary for survival. Understandably the need to make weapons, hunt and fight off tribes is longer necessary but as long as we are alive there will always be a need for strength. Strength of mind, strength of character along with physical strength. Maybe society’s weakening is inevitable, brought on by the good deeds of strong men in the past who fought wars, built cities and contributed to the “cushy” life of your 20th century man. An abundance of ease in ones survival no doubt begets complacency and leads to an infatuation with instant gratification. Take Rome as an example who at the height of their civilization experienced a cultural weakening; loss of values, corruption, economic troubles, less self sufficient people who were overweight (sound familiar?). This lead to their slaughter by the savage Germanic tribes. Is life then a cycle of fighting our way to an abundance of prosperity resulting in tolerance of weak behavior leading our demise?
Throughout history strong men have ALWAYS preserved and advanced civilization. There are endless stories of men like Hercules, Gilgamesh, Beowulf and the Vikings who exercised power to accomplish difficult things. But sometime ago, being strong became something that was looked down upon, imaginably by those who were weak. Rather than working hard to be strong and gain the respect of the other men they began to paint these men as toxic, the men who did plumbing, mined coal, fought wars and protected women from serious danger. I find it hard to deny that these weak men fully understand the need for rough and dangerous men in the world. Without strength how does one provides their mate with a sense of financial, physical and emotional protection?
Next is the amount of young men (we’ll call them that for now) who won’t get out there and get a job. Instead of working hard and producing an income, they choose to live with their parents and avoid responsibility. Now I am not looking down on anyone living with their parents, if it is part of their plan to go somewhere, Hey! At least they have a plan. Too often you hear about those who haven’t found “the right job”, “who are waiting for something to align with their “passion” but imagine how a hunter would fare feeding his family or much less himself if he was waiting for something to fall into his lap. There is a definite advantage to doing what you love, undoubtedly. But if it doesn’t pay the bills, it must be worked on in spare time, it might even have to replace video games or Netflix! But get money coming in, that’s the first step. Don’t go begging your parents who have worked all their lives to feed you, clothe you and raise you.
Lastly, there are those who don’t understand that almost everything worth having must be earned. You don’t have to go to school to get a good education, if that piece of paper means something to you or is necessary for licensing (MD, PHD, CPA) by all means, work hard to get your education and make your destiny happen. Some of the most successful people in the world were “uneducated” by the standard of a college degree, Steve Jobs and Bill Gates come to mind, but they were successful because they had a plan and worked for it. We’re all slaves to someone or something, the beauty of America is most of us get to choose who or what it is. You want to be dirt poor and possibly make it as a musician, go for it, but the beauty of this country is you can. At the end of the day, there is only one person who will make it happen and only one way it will work. People will help you along the way but you must develop a mentality that it is up to you. One of Rome’s blunders was a lack of self-reliance among the people. Only you can choose how hard you work, and that will require strength. Being open to criticism is also a strength because instead of getting your “feelings hurt” you will grow just like a muscle being worked on in the gym. Remember, you cannot have something for nothing in this world, understand that pain is part of the process, endure it and you will be forever grateful. The only free cheese is in the mousetrap!