“I’m not much but I’m all I have.”
Philip K. Dick
“I’m still learning to love the parts of me that no one claps for.”
“Before I travelled my road I was my road.”
Me against the world.
And then there will be the times you suck in your breath, stand up a little straighter and say “WTF, I’m all I have … and I better clap for the parts of me that maybe no one sees, or acknowledges, but are the things that are actually help me in the me against the world.”
Now. A shitload of people are gonna say that most people are never really alone in this “against” thing and that if you carry the burden of “against” solely, as an individual, you decrease your odds of not only being able to carry such a burden but also to actually have some success.
So, sure, it is definitely a “team” <or “village”> world.
So, sure, success is almost completely dependent upon being able to figure out at least some way to assimilate into a larger group, interact with others or share some responsibility to multiply efforts.
And, yet, ‘pulling your own weight’ is a 100% individual, I, thing.
Let’s face it. Team or no team, village or no village, organization or no organization, there will be points in Life and your career where it will be “I am all I have.” I would also note that at all points in Life we are responsible to ourselves for our own existence.
And, if you face that as a Life truth then … well … it seems that, consequently, you would want to be the pilot of your existence ship and refuse to let your path be dictated by the whims of the world <which is against you>.
I am not suggesting this is easy nor is this one of those things that happens in your Life like a light switch.
Most of us begrudgingly reach this point grinding our way to a point of acceptance all the way vacillating on accepting ‘I am all I have’ and ‘wishing I was more.’ That vacillation may distill down the most common and visible defect we have as people — the inconsistency in how we think about ourselves as well as inconsistency in our behavior <how we react in, and to, certain situations>.
“Since vacillation seems to me the most common and visible defect of our nature.”
Montaigne ‘of the inconstancy of our actions’
I would guess our ‘defect’ isn’t really as bad as we think mainly because I imagine most of us focus on the wrong things. We focus on the ‘deeds’ or specific actions rather than our inward impulses.
That makes sense.
It makes sense because I can see an act, see a behavior, and see an outcome. Inwards looking is a little less concrete and we are also pretty good at twisting our inward impulses through some fairly absurd navel gazing processes which mostly mangle any real conclusions.
What makes more sense is to focus on the right thing.
When we live Life right our actions remain steadfast in character so that Life cannot sufficiently bend the enough to matter and yet our actions contain a’ diversity so manifest, sudden and continual.’
Everyone should read Montaigne … he may be the ultimate spokesperson for “but I am all I have.”.
Our minds vary like the daylight day to day.
One courageous deed does not prove one brave.
One cowardly deed does not prove one a coward.
One smart deed does not prove one intelligent.
One stupid deed does not make one an idiot.
One deed is simply one deed.
As Montaigne finished ‘inconstancy’ he closes with:
“… it is not the work of a well-tempered mind to judge us simply by our outward actions; we must search the inward parts, and see by what springs the impulse give.”
No outside person can truly search the ‘inward parts’; only “I” can.
Because, well, I am all I have. And, for 99% of us, it is enough.
“I will clamber through the clouds and exist.