This week a 29-year-old aviation bag thrower stole an empty commercial plane, performed a barrel roll before crashing in an apparent suicide. Audio traffic of his conversation with flight control reveals a young man frustrated with the world, but surprisingly relatable to all of us.
Richard Russel was married, well-liked by his colleagues, and was passionate about aviation and travelling the world.
Many men express a lack of purpose, where one has no choice but to serve the machine and be extracted for their worth before they are discarded. No personal achievement. No fulfilment. No feeling of even being alive. We all suffer under the crushing weight of industrialised life
We are all Richard.
If only for a brief, beautiful moment, Richard truly lived as a free man, living Man's oldest dream, completely, utterly free.
It's important for men to identify our disposable nature in this society, but take mitigated risks towards pursuing our passions and a safe long-term and secure freedom - financially or otherwise.
Find small challenges that can be achieved through discipline and concurrently pursue broader life passions that change one's circumstances. If you are not moving forward, you are moving backwards.
Author a journal, spill out your most inner thoughts, over time these words will inspire you as you note your progress.
Reach out and create a close circle of friends who empower you, inspire you and challenge you to be the best you.
Invest time in education, sharpen the mind as well as the body. You should try to be constantly learning, expanding your knowledge; buy a Kindle or get a library pass; it's a fantastic investment for your future.
Studies show that working out, be it lifting, running, hiking in nature reduces suicide. It helps avoid old harmful habits, make new friends, and is one of the best anti-depressants out there.
Pursue your passions above all else.
Live a life worth living.
Keep a journal.
Lift. Healthy body, healthy mind.
Talk to your friends, ask if they're okay.
If you're feeling the call of the void, speak to someone, be it a friend, a colleague, a therapist, or even a moderator here.
Blue skies and tailwinds, Skyking.
When you arise in the morning, think of what a precious privilege it is to be alive - to breathe, to think, to enjoy, to love.