Groundhog Day

Day after day, week after week, month after month, year after year we are on repeat. Traditions that have existed before I was born still implemented and celebrated to this day. As humans, we have a way of making life palatable, workable, and predictable. We take what we know for granted. We begin to do this around junior high when repeat starts to kick in. We start to recognize everyday plays out the same with slight variation. Today is groundhog day, around this time of year I also watch the movie. It is one of my traditions. I have a list of movies that I watch every year. This is one of them.

Why, why would I watch this movie every year. The movie if you haven’t seen is is about a weatherman who is kind of an asshole, has to repeat groundhog day over and over again with no way out of the loop. Everything happens to him again and again. I used to resonate with the disparity of the main character’s day. The more he can predict what is going to happen the more the day became a depressing mess. He also realizes he can do whatever he wants; the day resets and he stops giving a shit. That is when the fun of the movie happens. But true to life, the only thing he could change with any meaning was himself. A few different things happen as he recognizes life’s patterns and he goes through a range of emotions. So, why do I watch this movie over and over again? Because there is a difference between living like life doesn’t matter and the world is going to end and living intentionally and life is about growth and tomorrow is no different than today. Take advantage of what you have.

The movie is an outward in personal growth story. The main character tries to manipulate and solve the outward problems. Over time he realizes the most important changes are the internal changes.

That brings us to this morning. I am watching the movie to start the day. I want to get it out of the way and at the same time reflect early about life.

What matters isn’t what we think, not success in the world’s view of it. What matters is what happens inside of us. What matters isn’t succeeding at our personal ambitions for fame, wealth, or security. What matters is our growth and that happens as we help others. I know, I know, there is some bullshit in life that makes our success predicated on how much we help others. But it is true, the more we help others the more we help ourselves. The more we put others needs before our own, the more we find purpose and meaning in life. The more we do what we are uniquely able to do, the more we are satisfied we become in helping others. In that selfless bullshit, we find our true success. When we do this the work of personal growth will kick in and shape who we are. Our mindset will change as we face new challenges. Our groundhog day will be that of improvement, doing better tomorrow what we did today. We will learn what to accept and what to challenge. Here’s the catch, it only works if we live intentionally. If we choose to help others and forget about ourselves.

Well, watching this movie and writing this post is becoming an attention challenge. Writing isn’t winning. With that, have a fun day!

*Bullshit: you know the thing that seems like a pain in the ass. The thing that seems like it is more work than you should be doing. The thing that you don’t want to do, but if you do it you will get results. You know, like working out, running, dieting, going to school to gain knowledge or skills. That kind of bullshit. The adulting kind of bullshit.