Living the American Dream on No Sleep

Living the American Dream on No Sleep

In today’s day and age we are surrounded with the mentality that we can in fact “do it all.” We can attain that ideal balance between our family life, social life and a job worth going to everyday, but there is a price to pay. Where is the so called, precious “me” time? Spreading oneself too thin can be a hazard to not only your own well being but other around you as well.

The problem here lies with our perception of reality as we see it through the lives of those in the public eye. Everyday we see celebrities of all kinds, from A list all the way to the D list, doing not only their normal celebrity jobs but doing countless promotions and appearances. They seem to be having the time of their lives, raising their families, working 50 different jobs and living it up at night.

This may not seem like fact but subconsciously it is true. America is a country of achievers, competitors who are constantly trying to keep up with the Jones’s, a country of people that scrutinize and have no problem ridiculing others whenever a flaw is spotted.

Through all walks of life, every class and gender, we see people who support only themselves along with the heads of households fighting to stay above water in a an economy that is slowly coming out of the shitty state it’s been in since Bush left office.

The hunger for more is not a bad thing, it is when you lose the balance of what you’re giving as to what you’re getting that makes the struggle seem almost not worth it.

As a waitress at a fairly busy restaurant, a bartender at a different late night joint, a student, and freelance babysitter all in one I find it very hard to manage all tasks at hand and give the attention needed without being distracted by a future appointment. On paper, everything seems to fit into a schedule when I make a commitment or agree to cover a shift. In reality, I’m over reaching sometimes and as a result my patience goes out the window by the end of the week. This is where we not only hurt ourselves both those we love around us. Friends and family alike have their own issues of getting by and we lose the sight of what is good for the soul because we are too focused on what is good for the wallet.

The world is not based on the typical 9-5 schedule. It is the evening, night and early morning shifters that keep us running. The vicious circle of all different industries relying on the commitment of convenience from each other is what makes our society unique from that of different cultures. Cities such as New York and Los Angeles never sleep whereas the norm in cities such as Rome and Madrid is to shut down most storefronts mid afternoon for a small siesta. Imagine, everything in Manhattan stopping to close up shop for a couple of hours to take a quick nap.

Quality of service relies on the dedication to one’s business. This all relates back to the almighty dollar. Whoever wants it more is going to get it. That does not help in our personal lives so much. Even making time for fun can be tricky, while it is much needed, too much can throw us off and leave us behind in the rat race.

Despite the fact that most people work so hard is to make a better living for themselves and or their family, the problem here is when we lose sight of what we are working for. Countless times I remember my parents missing my basketball games because some overtime had come their way. Yes, time was always made for family but that notion is slowly fading away as generations pass. I have had to pass on many family dinners and outings because of my night shifts, feeling terrible I justify it because I do have to support myself.

It’s never an easy balance of working hard and playing hard but it can be achieved with a little more effort to be conscious of what life is all about. To keep things in perspective I always try to remember what a wise man once told me, “ You can’t hoot with the owls in the evening and soar with the eagles in the morning.”