Some things I know

Photo courtesy of Karin Dalziel

 

I may not know much.  Actually, I’m sure of that.  But here are a few things that I am pretty sure of.

The world is a beautiful place.  Everything from the strip malls to the great palaces has its own wonder.

The people I see are often not very happy.  I won’t say that people are sad or depressed or angry or mean or anything, just that they are not happy.  More to the point, most people don’t even really have a good sense of their own unhappiness, feeling it merely as something uncomfortable, like a back ache.  Most people assume that things are the way things are because, well, that’s the way things are.

We live in a system that keeps us disconnected, ill-at-ease, rich in all the wrong ways and poor in all the right ones.  There are many many forces in this world that prey on us, that seek to keep us in this state.  I would like to say that there are some people who benefit at the expense of all the rest, but really, no one is unaffected.

When people feel like they have enough, there is no limit to their generosity.  When people feel scarcity, like there isn’t enough to go around, they will use all of their effort to hoard and take what they can away from you.

I want to help bring people together, to make them feel the vast abundance that lies within them and around them.  I want people to feel rich, both money-rich and life-rich.  I want people to reach out and share themselves with others.  I want to rebel against the system that wants to keep us poor.  I want to use love and openness to stick it to the man.  I want to organize and join up with people all open and loving and dreaming and creating and sticking it to the man.  I want to have fun and laugh and ride water slides, all while sticking it to the man.  (There’s a running theme in there somewhere.)

I don’t feel like I have ever had an original thought.  Everything inside feels endlessly recycled from books, blogs, movies, and even some television shows.  Why am I putting my words out here?  Isn’t there enough words, enough content, enough noise out there?  I feel like everything I’m about to say can be responded to with “yeah, [Famous Writer] already wrote about that, and much better.”

Nonetheless, I know that there are some people who can only hear me.  I don’t know why this is true, but I know it must be.  Maybe there are only one or two people.  Who knows?  I know it’s worth continuing to write against the chance that one of those two people happen to read the one grouping of words that is meaningful to them.

I spent many years believing that it was too late.  Too late to dream, too late to achieve my dreams, too late for me.  I don’t think about that anymore.  I’m not saying I know whether it’s true or not, only that it does me no good to think about it, so I don’t, and continue on anyway.

I am nervous of putting myself out in a public forum.  I’m scared that I’ll become inundated with trolls like your average YouTube video.  But worse, I’m scared that everything I’ve said out loud here is out of my control.  Once it’s out there, it’s there forever, stored somewhere, on some machine, on some server.  No word I ever put out here can ever be fully retracted.  I will always “on the record”.

I’ve been very fortunate.  Despite some horrible periods in my life, I’m healthy and have people around me that I care about.  I’ve had some small wins in my life, and even a few big ones.  I’m endlessly fortunate to have been born into this place and time.  I’ve been incredibly lucky too, but I won’t let luck take all the credit.  I was there when luck showed up, after all.

I think there is fun and silliness everywhere.  I believe that bad puns might just help to save the world.

I don’t want to work for the man–or for anyone–for the rest of my life.  I know I am envious of some people’s lives, and for better or for worse, there are parts of them that I would like to experience for myself.  I feel insecure about wanting parts of other people’s lives.

Doing the safe thing is never almost the best choice.  Safety is aiming low, and when I aim low, I usually get it.  Nevertheless, I know that I have spent much of my life doing the safe thing.  I say that I’m going to change that, and right now, but I know it’s not so simple.

I want a sense of security, and that I don’t feel like I have it now.  To me, security means choices and the ability to take care of myself (and others) no matter what happens.  I don’t have that now, and part of my journey here is to find it.

I know that life isn’t going to happen to me.  There is no point to waiting.  I want to learn from you, and I want to you to learn from me, or maybe just be entertained.  I’ve got a long way to go.  I’m still searching.  I’m still trying.  I don’t completely know what I’m doing just yet.  But I know it’s time to start now.

Ready?  Fire.  I’ll aim later.

Enough about me. What are you sure about?

Mike Pumphrey

Mike Pumphrey

I'm the founder and author of Unlikely Radical, a site to help people succeed with money, achieve their goals, and live intentionally.

I offer a free phone consultation to anyone who is interested in changing their financial narrative. Are you ready? Click here for details.
Mike Pumphrey
Posted on October 29, 2012