Transitional times and periods of adjustment happen in everyone’s life. Change is an ever-evolving process that doesn’t stop for anyone; no matter how hard you try to avoid it. Any important movements in someone’s life will commonly receive the title of Big Decisions. These Big Decisions are transitions, adjustments, and journeys that flow throughout everyone’s life. A pivotal moment in your life journey can differ, in thousands of ways, from what others experience, but they can all be seen within the same light. Any and all periods of time that include Big Decisions are typically rampant with stress, anxiety, existential break downs, and people trying to figure out what the “right thing to do” is. As I have just made the next Biggest Decision of My Life (because there will always be more to follow), I’m finding time to sit and reflect on what is happening in my mind and body. There came a release of emotions, but they did not present themselves as positive emotions at all. I immediately started sobbing after putting forth my Big Decision to the world. Why? Was this not on the horizon for months? Shouldn’t I be ecstatic to have some direction in my life again? A definitive Big Decision has been made, shouldn’t I feel relieved?
After some thinking and reflecting, I realized something about the culture surrounding change in our lives. Big Decisions, in our culture, are treated like the end all be all. And as I type that, I know it’s a vague idea. I want to talk about it in the sense of these decisions are what matters to the outside world. What you do next, what plans you have, and what you’re going to do with the life given to you is the conversation topic of so, so many conversations. No one talks casually anymore about what hobby they want to start or whether aliens are real.
This rigid, cultural idea is also reflected in the not-real-life pictures we put up on all kinds of social media. The world is now conditioned to care about big decisions and the positive side of life. It is always important to stay focused on the positive things in life for simple mental stability, but now the positivity has become overwhelming. Big Decisions have become a huge focus in life, in our relationships, and in how the world sees you. This isn’t entirely a bad thing because, to really get anywhere in life, you have to know how to properly sell yourself. But if there are no Big Decisions being made, or if you don’t put as much stock into these decisions, it’s seen as though you’re doing nothing. The air of competition breeds anxiety and provides an imagined importance surrounding the Big Decisions that every person has to make. Anxiety about making the right decision, the gut-wrenching need to be seen as important, and the true desire to feel as though you are approved by society can take over. This simple human tendency, in our modern world, is truly ridiculous. Inherently, if everyone is making the same transitions and decisions, around the same time in their life, it’s not an important as you deem it to be. It’s much more normal than is portrayed by the endless compliments you get, from random long-lost relatives, on your Facebook post.
Showing off and focusing on Big Decisions can certainly serve a purpose, but it can also become problematic. It can be problematic due to the simple fact that there’s much more to life than where you’re going next or what your “big break” is going to be. The little things matter so much more. And yes, this is in direct opposition of the idea of being larger than yourself…but, when you think about it, this idea fits right in. You are bigger than your life decisions. You are more than what school or job you decide to choose. Humans are so much larger than the things we tend to produce anxiety about. There’s an entire universe stuck inside each human being on Earth. Each universe produces new patterns of thought, new constellations of skills, new meteors of break through ideas. All of this can be overshadowed by the one decision that society deems as “big” and “important”. Oh, and if that decision goes against what is expected by others, God help us all. Being larger than yourself includes being larger than you believe you can be in all your aspirations and goals, but also exploring the largeness that already exists within you and stretching that as far as you possibly can.
So yes, some decisions can impact your life in massive ways, but you always have to remember that you are large to begin with. All the things that make who you are, are what create the larger than life you. The accumulation of all the little stars, comets, galaxies, and inhabitable, safe planets within your mind, body, and soul create something so much larger than the one Big Decision you are trying to make.