Sunday, June 16, 2013

Ennui, I hardly knew thee.


It can be a difficult word. No, really. You know hard it can be to work out how to spell it? It sounds like it starts with an “o”…at least to me. I spent far too long trying to figure out how to spell it. First, I didn't have the right first letter, making the search frustrating. Then...How the hell do you explain ennui if you want to look it up?

It’s a “je ne se quoi” of words, so to speak. So, thank you voice recognition tech. And thank you people that put it on phones. And screw you to the people who “improved” the voice recognition tech when I tried to relook up the word as I started to write this. You, the last set, gave me a headache.

So, what about ennui? I often feel like I slide into a state of ennui. I have good times…or times. Then you slide into the funk, and you are useless to everyone around you. You're aware you aren't functioning, but disconnected from it all.

But before going on, maybe it’s worth being sure we know what we are talking about. Ennui is defined as a feeling of deep weariness and discontent resulting from having your desires satisfied or from lack of interest, or being bored…What? Wait am I subconsciously mocking myself?

…Most likely.

Still, it also seems valid. Not along the lines of having all my desires fulfilled. Rather, it’s the disinterest side.

I am disconnected. I always feel some distance or barrier with everyone and everything around me. I have to work at engaging. Though, thanks to my time online, I've seen enough to assume that the last part is more a matter of being an introvert, and not an extrovert.

But the disconnect. The disconnect lends to a weariness. Pessimism builds up and just shuts me down. Apathy grows. Hope dwindles. And I just stop caring. It's just...ennui. It makes me a pain for those close to be around. But their aren't that many around.

Yet the modern world does offer alternatives. It is a wonderful result of this age. While some complain people are more disconnected than ever in history, humans are able to connect in so many new ways. And through these paths we all can connect more frequently with far more people, in particular people more like ourselves (in interests, experiences, etc.).

So, while one can become disconnected, and grow silent, you can still have a community, you can listen to and learn from. You don’t have to become utterly lost and adrift. And you can reach out when you are ready.

It’s a good thing. Comforting. Never should it be forgotten.

Also, something to never lose sight of when you are in the doldrums is that you always have time to change things (Or, if your problems are a bit too much for you on your own, never too late to seek help.). It’s not too late to talk to someone, to make amends, to seek another career, or just be a better person. We always have the initiative to do something. We can't let ourselves lose sight of this.

Sadly I never listen to me. I find me unbearable, even with my sage wisdom.

Giving up on hope should be unacceptable. We are aspirational being. Call it greed, ambition, hunger, or horniness, we live to strive. We may find a need to retool our hopes and aspirations, but we need those stars to help us move and navigate through our lives.

So it’s important to embrace them and see where they can take us.