The Real World Myth – The tale of two realities (Part 1)

Common: Unintended negative consequences due to assuming there is a space outside of the “real world.”

Uncommon:“You better think about your future,” we are told at a young age, “so when the time comes, you can succeed in the real world.”

This advice bothers me because it creates a false reality.  Although the intention might be positive, it’s not fully accurate and therefore, misleading.

To fuel the delusion, this counsel doesn’t cease upon graduating from middle school—in fact, it doesn’t even stop at college graduation with the dreaded “welcome to the real world” speech. It often still repeats throughout our lifetime, almost suggesting we exist in a parallel universe, but not the “real” one.

Call me strange, but I enjoy observing life beneath the surface—trying to examine things free of assumptions and expectations.  It’s much harder to do than I originally thought, but nonetheless, these thought experiments have unearthed some interesting perceptions of this space we call “reality.”

To prepare, escape, or participate?

One thing I’ve noticed is that the majority of people act as though they are either preparing for the “real world” or attempting to escape it through mindless entertainment, drugs, denial, etc.  I can’t help but ask, “If we’re preparing for the ‘real world’ or trying to break free from it, then what reality are we in?”

I wasn’t aware that I had surrogate reality with its own time zone, free of “real” consequences.  And then I realized, I don’t.  It’s all one and the same.  So I guess, in a way, the “real world” isn’t a myth at all—it’s the only thing there is.  The myth is that we can teleport between two realities: one that really matters and one that does not.

But even Einstein couldn’t make those physics work.

We cannot compartmentalize our life in to isolated stages by disconnecting the past, present and future so we can live in one space while preparing for another.  If you look at the big picture, it’s one all-inclusive experience.


Our reality check comes when we learn there isn’t a warm up or a pre-game.  Heck, there isn’t another game to play at all.  If you’re reading this now, you’re in the big leagues whether you like it or not.

It would be nice to practice, think, and experiment in a vacuum, but that’s not how life works.  We have to live with the effects of ALL of thoughts, decisions, and actions—or lack thereof.

Everything we do (or don’t do) matters.

We are ALWAYS shaping our reputation, habits, character, and relationships in the same way we are always drawing upon our assets (time, energy, connections, money, etc.).  There is no “alternative space” or place that allows us to avoid influencing any of these things.  We can’t go back in time; nor can we pause it while exploring other options.

It’s merely the combination of our habits, character, and relationships coupled with way in which we use our assets that determines the quality of our life.  If what you are doing each day is not benefiting you in some way shape or form, then take responsibility and do something that does matter—and then do it well.

What are your thoughts?

Do you a story you’d like to share about the “real world?”  What are your thoughts on this topic? Would love to hear from you.

Stay uncommon,

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