Today’s society seems dominated by the idea of new. New phone. New car. New apps. All of this is great, right? Tired of the old? In with the new. Don’t want to wait and be patient? There’s something new waiting around the corner. Or so it seems.
I think there’s an attitude of impatience held by many in my generation (including me, from time to time) that demands the newest and what we consider to be the best. But is newer really for the best? When we grow tired of the old, many of our impulses long for something new to replace these things that we see as yesterday’s news. Instead, we should work on renewing or reexamining these things that we consider to be the “old.” This goes against the grain, however, and is contrary to the behavior of most of our peers. The millennial generation is used to having the newest, trendiest everything and our attention spans are focused on the next, not the here and now.
But if we’re always spending time pursuing new relationships and new friendships, what about the old ones? If we neglect the ones who have been with us through the good and the bad for a friendship for the sake of its “newness,” what will become of our well-cultivated relationships? If we forget about our past and present, how could we expect to conquer the future successfully? Now this isn’t me saying that anything fresh and new isn’t good by any means; anything that is old now was once new to us. But if we’re so caught up in tomorrow’s plans and expectations, how can we enjoy today?
Remember when you first started high school? The question was rarely, “What are you going to do after your freshman year?,” but it was rather, “Where are you going to college?” Now that I’m about to graduate, the questions rarely focus on the past and present, but rather on my plans following graduation. Once again, this is not saying you should attempt to steer yourself away from tomorrow, but a reminder that today and yesterday are still important too.
Sometimes, we may wish for new things, like a new group of friends, or perhaps just to go visit and explore a new place. But in my experience, I’ve found that wishing away where we are and what we have now rarely does any good. As John Lennon once said, “Life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans.” For now, it’s important to just enjoy the moment. When all of our new pursuits we’re chasing leave us empty-handed, we still have those things (whether it be a book, song, place, or friend) that we’ve enjoyed and turned to countless times before, things that are inextricable parts of each of our respective lives, so what’s the point in trying to replace them with something or someone new?
We need to stop constantly looking to something or someone new to solve all of our problems. We may find that the solution has been right in front of us the entire time.
Music for the Week:
"Could You Be the One?" – Stereophonics
"Two Step (Live at Red Rocks)" – Dave Matthews Band
"My Way Back Home" – Dawes
"Standing on the Moon" – Grateful Dead
"Gravedigger (Live at The China Club)" – Dave Matthews
"23 Years" – Corey Kilgannon
"Something in Common" – Dawes
"Something More than Free" – Jason Isbell
"Half the City" – St. Paul and the Broken Bones