I’m sitting here astonished.
Our world, our human interaction, revolves around two things: money and knowledge. It’s centered around how we can get these two things the quickest and how we can get the most of it. It’s simple. Money and Knowledge combine to form the ultimate leverage: power. Webster defines power in three simple ways:
- The ability to control people or things.
- Political control of a country or area.
- A person or organization that has control over other people or organizations.
Respect. Influence. Wealth. Status. CONTROL.
The list goes on and on. People tranlslate many things into power, but in this day and age it all goes back to the money and knowledge factor.
Now how do we obtain these things?
That’s the million dollar question.
Take a second and remember the video game revolution of the mid 90s to early 2000s. We had a new GameBoy every year and systems were getting more and more advanced. It was a race between companies to see who could influence the youth the most. Sony, Microsoft, Nintendo, everyone was out in the sea of culture trying to control it. They were vying for power in the re-emerging video game culture. Then, Nintendo came out with a way to change the video game playing field by using enhancements.
Who remembers GameSharks?
The little attachments you put on to your GameBoy to enter ridiculous cheats that completely change your game experience. Am I showing my age or exposing my nerdy nature? Well, who remembers using this GameShark on their Tony Hawk or Pokemon games? Unlocking mind-blowing game physics or unlimited tools to catch every Pokemon you found? Cheating? Debatable. Enhancement? All will say so.
So bringing it back, our lives are one long video game with no reset button of course. We go through it and sometimes fly through the easy levels like grade school, or relationships for others. And we also get frustrated as hell and throw the controller against the wall during the tough times like break ups, college, looking for work, etc. Now what happens when you find things in your life that make life easier. People find all different ways to cope with difficult situations and make time pass by. Some people use their talents to push through. Think about all the entrepreneurs who go into self employment or start businesses? Think about people who gets so good at something they pretty much HAVE to get paid for it at some point right? I mean look at people like LeBron, Marshawn Lynch, or Kobe. Can you see them doing anything else? Then we have people like Jon Taffer, Kanye West, Kim K, Perez Hilton, etc. Besides Kanye, what do these people really do to be successful? THEY USE WHAT THEY KNOW.
TAFFER FIXES BARS. KIM K IS GORGEOUS. PEREZ CAN FIND THE GOSSIP.
We are in an age where people literally receive compensation for running a business’ or celebrities Twitter accounts!!
“I’m good at tweeting, hire me.” ← I’ve tried that line as an undergrad.
If you strip it down to what it is in its more simple nature, people today are finding their niches and making it into their livings. In my opinion that’s simply amazing. So we have people that channel their inner true selves and make it work for them. They use who they are and what they can do to clear the levels of life right? They summon their IDs.
Even though that’s true we have people who coast through life through other enhancers. Drugs, alcohol, scamming, etc. I have friends who I don’t even know what their jobs are and they are financially stable and appear to be just fine. But how do we know what’s really going on? What if the smiles are just fake and the tears are being fought back harder than any other urge you’ve ever had. We don’t know how people cope unless they tell us right? We don’t know if the guy who’s the life of the party is really sad inside and uses drugs or alcohol to get by. They have no choice. They artificially enhance their lives to ignore and dodge our responsibility to live our lives to our utmost potential.
So what I’m getting at is in life we have these GameSharks for life. These personal aspects help us through life. But if we recall back to my nerdy spiel a couple paragraphs above, I forgot to mention that there were risks with these Game Sharks. If executed incorrectly or used too much, your game cartridge or even your GameBoy would be fried. Use it too much and you forget the thrill of playing the game, or the fun challenge of cracking the code for the next puzzle, or fighting a boss 1000 times before you finally get it.
Real world translation:
Too much of a good thing can eventually be a bad thing.
Too much success.
Too much attention.
Too much alcohol.
Too much money.
Too much knowledge.
Too much power.
Let’s break down a scenario, because I like telling stories.
Ricky is a 22 year old college grad. Working at a mediocre job, not even using his degree he spent four years and $×× amount. He wants something more out of life but can’t really put his finger on it. So in the meantime he floats his way through life by blowing money, getting in and out of town, courting females he has no care for, ignoring his real friends, etc. Essentially, Ricky is playing his game on super easy mode avoiding any real challenges. But let’s say he’s doing fine but not satisfied, and then he loses his job, and it may not even be his fault. There could be budget cuts. That, or he finally got sick of his boss and punched him in the face and walked out. He’s stuck. He can’t clear the next level, so he cranks up his GameShark and has two options:
shit together and do something about it.
Mope around, put up this wall between reality and fantasy and continue to tell myself it’ll be ok and eventually spin or of control.
Ironically enough, it all boils down to Control. That’s the key. Yeah you can use the GameSharks and get 100x master balls and catch every Pokemon you run into, but where’s the fun in that? What happens when you fry your cartridge? For a GameBoy you can buy a new game.
In case you didn’t know, you can’t buy a new life.
At least my man Ricky can’t. What Ricky needs to do is take the reigns in his life, use his resources and talents and get on the right track. No sense in skipping things in life because then we can value the growth and gain knowledge.
So what I’m really getting at is balance and control need to be in our daily lives. Yeah it’s fun to let loose from time to time, but do it too much all for the cost of happiness and you pretty much turn into Pat Bateman from American Psycho. For those of you who don’t know American Psycho is a 2000 film starring Christian Bale. He portrays a 27 year old wall street exec who is a sociopath living as a serial killer by night. It’s basically a satire of the things that can turn a man into a monster. Doubt, money, power, luxury, women, etc. Here’s a little look at the marvelous Patrick Bateman.
Here’s Patrick freaking out over some business cards. Especially Paul Allen’s. That damn Paul Allen.
Here’s Patrick’s greatest psycho moments for giggles.
Achieve happiness with balance.
Things won’t always go well, and you have to accept it when they don’t.
Control what you can control.
Have fun, but don’t lose sight of your goals and priorities.
Don’t skip corners, take every lesson you learn for what it’s worth. Don’t ignore hardship. Take hardship and make it work for you.
Always learn. Through success and failures.
We were given powerful brains for a reason to let them go to waste in finding ways to cheat and cut corners is a waste. Use them to find rewarding paths.
That’s the beauty of the GameShark — these guilty pleasures of life. They allow us to clear our minds and just run free, in order for us to snap back refueled. I always hit my cartridge with a few GameShark tweaks and had some fun but always turned them off eventually. Before that though, I overloaded my Pokemon Silver and now it freezes, it lags, I can’t go back. My little created Pokemon trainer is stuck in some fantasy land and its terrible. It’s kind of like the ring from Lord of The Rings, it has great power but using too much makes you go crazy.
All of the these lessons boil down to a couple of main points:
- Focus on taking challenges head on. Don’t run away because they’re just gonna be a level you need pass eventually.
- Too much of anything is a good thing. We’re all human, we’re going to want to let loose sometimes and just do away with all of our stress, but don’t over do it. Remember that’s all at the end of that day. Most of these GameShark getaways make things easier for you, and easier isn’t always better. The more you put in the more you yield.
- Use all your failures to your advantage. Use your let downs to pick you back up.
- Nothing wrong in having fun sometimes, just never loose sight of your next goal and end game.
Let’s not lose focus in 2016 and let’s all prosper.
Under-promising and over-delivering,