I mean we’ve had a good run as a species. In 300,000 years we’ve managed to progress from traveling barefoot to speeding down interstates, from throwing spears to launching satellites, from creating stone tools to artificial intelligence that sometimes out-thinks us.
“Should humanity just give up?,” isn’t just an abstract question. A while back, I woke up from a nap with the thought, Why put in all of this effort if things are going from bad to worse anyway?
It can seem so unfair that the future is utterly unpredictable. But putting myself in the shoes of history, I don’t imagine unknown futures are at all unique to 2023. The future of humanity has never been guaranteed. Just because there was an absence of nuclear bombs and manmade climate change, doesn’t mean our ancestors knew with any level of certainty that humanity would go on forever.
Human life is always ending, just as it’s always beginning. For all the changes the last 300,000 years have brought, that is as true today as it was at the dawn of the human race. Sadly, I lost my friends, Scott Delman, Jeff Salz and Paul Rentz in the last few years and during the same time, rejoiced when my cousin Frankie was born.
All of our modern problems didn’t invent life or death. Both carry on as they always have. Indeed, you and I are living into the unknown just as every creature to have walked, crawled, swam or flown before us.
My friends, if life were perfect, I’d be talking about doing our perfect perfect instead of our imperfect best. In fact, I wouldn’t have to talk about anything at all, we’d simply be perfect! But we’re not, and neither is life, so I’ll keep talking with my one-of-a-kind accent, which is often called a speech impediment.
If humanity gives up and lets indifference become its fate, sure, we might ALL be doomed. But one thing is for certain, Doomsday Thinking won’t fill us with the delight of possibility we need to create the way forward.
Yep, things are imperfect right now, just as they’ve been since the beginning of time and yes, thank goodness we still have the freedom to envision the best and go for it.
JASON FREEMAN is a Professional Speaker and the proud owner of a Speech Impediment. He is also the author of “Awkwardly Awesome: Embracing My Imperfect Best” and a Perseverance Coach.
He excites and encourages his audience to break through the barriers of their own limitations using a method he created, called “Doing your Imperfect Best ™”.
His Imperfect TEDx Talk can be viewed here.