It’s an Illusion, Michael

GobIt’s the final countdown! The home stretch. My writing muscles are stronger, albeit a bit sore, and I’m ready to call it a win and go home. But, rather than fizzling out at the end of the month, I want this week to be a good lead-in for what I have planned for P&O in the future. With that in mind, I’ve decided a theme week is in order. Welcome to ‘It’s an Illusion, Michael’ Week.

According to my ginormous red 1991 Webster’s Dictionary, an illusion is “something that deceives by producing a false or misleading impression of reality.” Illusion plays a role in each of our lives. We often make decisions, judge ourselves and others, and measure our success or happiness from a skewed idea of reality. Our illusions come from from a variety of sources including, but most definitely not limited to, the constant barrage of advertisements we encounter every single day. While we all love to blame corporate America for lying to us, wreaking havoc on our self-esteem, and creating a false image of life, love, and relationships, the truth is that there is plenty of blame to go around. When all is said and done, though, we are responsible for our own illusions.

Speaking from a plethora of experiences, I know that although many of our illusions provide a sense of comfort, security, and safety, they are ultimately a destructive force in our lives. We each have our favorites that we cling to, certain that they serve us well. But each lie we believe, each illusion we buy into, separates us from reality, from true truth. The good news is that we each hold the power to change. We have the power to choose to live in reality, freed from the illusions that keep us exhausted, angry, bitter, complacent, victimized, frightened, impotent, and alone.

Disillusionment, or the freedom from illusion, is actually a positive thing, although it is almost exclusively spoken of in disparaging terms. Once we no longer base our thoughts, actions, and interactions on illusions, we are free to live our lives unencumbered by lies, unreasonable expectations, and the pain that comes from fighting against reality. The journey away from illusion-based living is one I’m still traveling on, but I feel I’ve learned a thing or two along the road thus far. I hope you will join me on this week’s journey to explore the illusions that imprison us and move toward a healthy disillusionment.

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