Irrelevance Might Make You Relevant

Do you ever find yourself daydreaming about the vastness of the universe and your total irrelevance? If you do, well join the club. I constantly find my thoughts wandering off into some other realm where I begin to think about how one action of mine is the result of a chain reaction of other people’s actions but also starts another chain reaction (if that makes any sense). For instance, a couple of days ago I flew from Brazil to Boston to return to Babson College for my spring semester. While driving to the airport I looked around at the endless city of Sao Paulo and couldn’t help but think about the network of interconnectivity we find ourselves in. Later, when arriving at the airport, I looked around and thought about all the different lives and experiences that I was surrounded by and that for some reason I would be joined by a couple other hundred passengers on a plane to Boston to carry on with their lives and experiences, as I would do with mine.

Do you ever find yourself daydreaming about the vastness of the universe and your total irrelevance? If you do, well join the club.

I then proceed to have a mini existential crisis as I’m trying to read the second book of the Millenium, The Girl Who Played With Fire by Steig Larsson (strongly recommend). I begin to think about how I was always taught that I had some sort of purpose. Watching movies or reading books as kids, we always seemed to read about the character who accomplished great things or changed the world, and thus we never really explored realistic lives of those who were simply born, lived and died. I began to believe that I have to be something exceptional, that I have to change the world, but then again why me? What qualities do I have that are better than the person sitting next to me, or the one over there in the front row? What makes me the one who will be the protagonist and not just a secondary character? I also start to think about how our planet Earth is also just a grain of dust compared to the immensity of the Universe, and yet its significance is that its brought life in the form of living organisms onto its planet.

“Your generation has probably the hardest job the human race has ever had to deal with, you have to solve entrepreneurially and ethically, the problems of climate change, political chaos, growing inequality worldwide.

So,  in the grand scheme of things, perhaps my irrelevance is normal. I might never be as famous or successful as Oprah or Steve Jobs, but that within the microcosm of myself and my experiences, I might actually be achieving something. But then self-doubt and anxiety cloud my mind as I begin to think about what I want to accomplish and how. In my perspective, everything I do today is because I’m following the natural course of my life. Unexpectedly, my Macroeconomics professor shoots my generation in the leg with “Your generation has probably the hardest job the human race has ever had to deal with, you have to solve entrepreneurially and ethically, the problems of climate change, political chaos, growing inequality worldwide.” Basically, they expect us to clean up the mess of all the things that her generation, (sorry, don’t want to assume her age, but yeah) and past generations, screwed up.  And all we get in return are articles about how lazy we are or how we are not having children?! Maybe we would have time for children if you hadn’t killed the Earth.

Anyways, this may seem like a brief rant about the society we live in, but the ultimate point I would like to convey is that we all must serve some form of purpose. I believe that each individual chooses their own purpose. I don’t think that you are the next Mark Zuckerberg that will invent the new Facebook because that has already been done, so strive to be something different, something the world hasn’t seen before. How about, your authentic self? We all try so hard to fit into these categories all our lives to achieve the best job, best grades, best body, best everything, when we can simply just exist. Honestly, when I began this article, I had no idea that I would end up here. So why can’t we just teach kids that the purpose of life is to exist and live in the present? I know that this brings up a lot of counterarguments, like who’s going to solve the problems of tomorrow etc. etc. But think about it, if we are all living without having to prove ourselves to each other than I might actually have time to sit down and try to figure out the whole climate change thing, rather than sitting through some boring high school biology class because some dude said it would be good for everyone to grow up knowing that the “mitochondria is…” yeah you know the rest.

If you made it to the end of this article, I don’t expect you to change your mind or the way you live your life, but I do hope that you start to give less of a f*ck about what other people think because truly, what does it matter? Allow yourself to indulge in things that are considered uncool, like reading a book, (lol. Again plugging for Millenium series) or leaving your phone at home when going to lunch with a friend at the dining hall. I would personally love to get to know all the people that somehow skim past my name on social media, in a classroom roster, or even when reading my articles. So, if you are remotely interested, hit me up. You know my name.