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What do you live for? - Ed's journal
What do you live for?
Inspired somewhat by a thread on another forum - what do you live for?
What drives you, and fills you with enthusiasm?
The discussion in question is somewhat morose, populated as it is, by a contingent of geeks. There seems to be a lot of people who aren't really sure - they're just sort of ... getting on, because that's what you do.

And the thing is, I know exactly what they mean. After University finished, I got up, went to work, came home, played games, slept. Repeat.

But ... well, no. I shall hold off on how I would answer the question now. What would be your answer?
4 comments or Leave a comment
purp1e_magic From: purp1e_magic Date: January 8th, 2011 01:46 pm (UTC) (Link)
I think I have much more drive and direction than most of my friends. I Have so many things I live for that it's hard to answer the question. So in no particular order:

the kids. I want to raise them well, help them reach their potential, learn to be good and kind, instil in them curiosity and ambition, play with them and have fun, love them, give them good childhood memories and lots of special experiences to look back on, set them good examples, broaden their minds and their horizons...

Peter. Peter doesn't have many of close and personal friends, so I am his social support network. I give him advice, a place to rant, pep talks, a voice of descent to play against, etc. I can't abide people who complain about a thing and do nothing within their power to remedy the situation. Either put up with it or change it. I find that, unlike me, Peter is heavily influenced by the mood and morale of the people around him, so when his workmates are feeling fatalistic, Peter can't see the good in a situation. So one of my jobs is to break that spell and give him back some independence of emotion. I also give him a social life - partly, get him off the computer and doing stuff with me and the kids, but also organise meeting up with friends or going out for whatever reason. Peter doesn't have the same kind of drive that I do. So I help give him a direction, help him work towards his goals, stand by him and help him as he tries to achieve them.

For myself, there are different types of things that drive me.

Self-betterment. Things that improve upon who am and what I'm like. I'm currently working on my social skills when face-to-face and on controlling my silly patches.

Constructive use of my time. This can be long term or short term goals, and can be anything from my attempt to do a PGCE (a plan that was ruined by my health) to cutting up old Christmas cards in an attempt to save and reuse as much material as possible.

Pushing at the boundaries of what I can achieve. This includes things like building a new DVD shelf, learning as I go, or trying more advanced techniques in decoupage.

Being helpful and useful. Again, this can long or short term. It might mean working towards writing a book on fibromyalgia, or it might mean reminding Simon to put his dirty socks in the wash basket.

Having fun. Enjoying life is very important, and whilst I do enjoy my work, the various things I aim to do with my life, there's nothing like doing something for no other reason than your enjoyment of it. Peter says I have too much drive, I'm always working towards something, and I never stop. He thinks that this is part of what fibromyalgia is, and he may be right. Certainly in my experience people with fibro used to be the sort of people that never stopped.
chess From: chess Date: January 9th, 2011 12:19 pm (UTC) (Link)
I would like to say that I live for the potential to fulfil God's plan for me.

But day-to-day mostly what I live for is to carry on living.

That's less bad than it sounds - I know I am pretty incompetent in a wide range of practical areas and therefore most of my survival effort goes towards doing the things I can do for other people so that they will help me in turn with the things that are trivial for other human beings but difficult for me... which probably ends up with quite a high utility function.

What drives me and fills me with enthusiasm is generally New Projects, stuff where I feel I can actually make an improvement to some aspect of other people's lives (however trivial), and the general desire to have people think well of me and want to look after me - and 'people' in that statement includes God.
velvet_nothing From: velvet_nothing Date: January 11th, 2011 10:13 pm (UTC) (Link)
I'm curious about your answer now, Ed - are you going to add your own?

Not sure what my answer would be... or rather, I think there may be many pieces to it and I can't quite be bothered to articulate it right now... But it's an interesting question. At bad times in the past, my answer would have been that I simply didn't have the courage to *not* live, but now it would be somewhat more positive, thankfully.
sobrique From: sobrique Date: January 11th, 2011 11:11 pm (UTC) (Link)
Ah yes. Duly done.
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