Lately I find myself subconsciously searching for something more, I’m not entirely sure what, but can’t seem to find it anywhere. I look for it as I scroll through social media, at the bottom of my beer, at the end of a long Netflix binge (I’m such millennial), but I always feel the same. I’ve been trying to find an explanation for that feeling, a word to associate with it, something to blame it on.
Complacency. I’ve been hearing this word a lot lately and actually paying attention to it when it touches my eardrums. Unlike other words, it flutters in and stays there, resonating for reasons I can’t put my finger on. Like an itch you can’t scratch.
To be complacent means to feel unaware or uninformed self-satisfaction. My own personal definition of complacency is “ignorant contentment.” I love when people say that you aren’t growing as a person unless you’re outside of your comfort zone. I love even more when these growing pains are referred to as metaphoric stretch marks. You grow, you stretch, you learn, you adapt, you are forever changed because of it.
So I started really thinking about that word and realizing all the different aspects of my life I’ve slowly grown complacent about. My job, my weight, my city, everything has become so routine that I feel content for the most part. The problem is I can’t label that same contentment as happiness, or pride, or even satiation.
The problem with complacency is you can think about it and talk about it until you’re blue in the face, but unless you actually do something it isn’t going anywhere. It pulls up a chair and sits next to you and you both idly watch the world go by day in and day out. You stare out the same window and watch the same cars go by and think the same thoughts and have the same observations, until after a while you don’t see the window, or the cars, or observe new things, or conjure new thoughts. Life happens and you don’t even know it.
I wish I knew the secret to avoiding complacency altogether, but I guess that’s half the reason we’re here. We all live to know what our life’s purpose is and once we find it, we channel our hearts and souls into that purpose. It’s the waiting period that’s the hardest part, and it could last forever if you don’t force yourself into growing some more stretch marks.