The box

July 15, 2017
The box

I’ve never been good at following the rules. At five, my babysitter didn’t want to be held responsible for my behavior on our way to kindergarden. I guess it’s important to mention she lived three houses away from school, and she was walking all the way with us. She was simply overwhelmed by little five-year-old Marianne challenging her authority.

It’s in my bones. I need to understand the why behind everything. You cannot impose something to me without explaining it first. And if I feel something shouldn’t be a certain way, trust me, I will say it out loud. For long, I’ve tried to shut up, since I know I am often talking too much, but I guess I have to accept that I’m a big mouth.

This is why I hate this whole generation thing. I find it stupid. I hate when we put people into categories. I hate when we try to draw very defined lines, to square off the reality. I hate when we want everyone to fit in one box. I am not a Millenial, and neither are you. You are also not a Gen X,Y,Z. You cannot seize someone’s essence with such a limited definition. We are all humans with quite similar needs despite our age, race or passions.

I know it’s scary. I know it’s way easier for you (and any company out there) to make sense of the world with those clear boxes. The thing is I don’t want to fit in. I won’t let myself be put in your pretty little box.

My box these days looks like a lot of other people’s box. From the outside, you can think I’m stuck in the rat race, following the same routine day after day. I’ve been working at the same place now for more than five years. I did move from one cubicle to the other, but I’ve been walking every week day in the same building for five years. I’ve been sitting behind the same computer, I’ve been seeing the same people. Quite a box right? Makes you want to escape to Bali, doesn’t it?

Or not. As I was listening to the radio last night, I realized there are always two sides of the same coin. One man was talking about how he left his big job at the head of an organization to live confined in a monastery,  and how withdrawed from “life” he now feels freer than ever.

The next story was about an ultra-orthodox Jew who made the choice to leave his community to step into what he considered to be real life. He’s now leading a group to share his experience and help other Jews who want to make the big jump learn the basics of modern life in society.

Both thought they were stuck in a box, and wanted to get out.

The box is not necessarily what we think it is. Actually, we are the ones who choose to put something, even ourselves, in or out of it. Let’s break free and get out of yours, whatever it is. Because you know life’s out there, or maybe deep in. You get to choose if you want to see your days as fitting into a box, or as a frame for something even greater that is yet to happen.

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