Recently, CollegeCandy ran a post asking if our generation can really “have it all.” What we got back were some accounts of people trying to stuff as much as they could into their lives and hoping they could carry the weight for as long possible. Sound unhealthy? Yes, and we all know it, even if we’re doing it too (and who isn’t?).
Take a breath. I’m gonna let you into a little secret: you don’t have to. Not only do you not have to, you really can’t! Helen Fielding, the creator of one of our favorite literary characters, Bridget Jones, says that we can’t. During a recent speech at the Oxford Union, Fielding cited the idea of “having it all” as a modern disease making women feel the need to live up to the images and expectations of an idealistic society that are thrown at us from all sides. A modern disease? Awesome. Now we have to worry about this AND swine flu.
However, Bridget Jones certainly couldn’t do it, so why should we feel the need to overstuff our lives? Think of all the things you love about Bridget – she’s human, she makes mistakes (awesomely hilarious mistakes!), she knows how to have a good time, she’s dedicated when it counts, etc, etc. We love her because she is all of us! What she definitely isn’t is a trembling, stressed-out activity freak that might collapse at any moment just because she wanted to fit just one more thing into her life… and then feel like a failure when she can’t.
Let’s be real with ourselves. We don’t want to be the girl who has it all, because we’d be stressed and constantly afraid of dropping one of the many balls we’d have to juggle to make that happen (and I don’t know many girls who like juggling balls….). What our generation really needs is to prioritize and figure out who we are and, eventually, who we want to be. Sure, we’re gonna have to give up some things (maybe you don’t need to be in twelve organizations and have seven jobs), but it’s better than giving up our sanity.