I came across a song I haven’t listened to in awhile a few days ago. For me, not listening to it in a while means about two weeks; but the way my mind works I had forgot about its existence in that amount of time. But when it came up randomly on another artist’s radio on Spotify I immediately put it on repeat for at least 30 minutes straight, along with working its way back into the daily rotation.
The song is “Something to Love”, by Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit.
Jason Isbell is a self-professed modern troubadour, a rambler who uses songs and poems to provide their keep wherever they might end up.
After I thought about it for a while, I decided that this song is one of my favorites. That position may not hold much prestige as I’m sure I have dozens of ‘favorite’ songs, but each of them is special for a certain reason or situation.
In a previous editorial I discussed about how music is amazing because of how situational it is.
This one has very much reflected the past several weeks.
The soothing, jangling guitar and lullaby like violin are great in their own right; the lyrics though are what make this an amazing song.
“I hope you find something to love, something to do when you feel like giving up. A song to sing or a tale to tell; something to love, it will serve you well.”
There is no doubt that we all have our own struggles and demons, and just as certain is the fact that they are recurring. Having something to do that you love is a great way to make it through those hard times.
The issue though is finding that something. At first glance it’s simple advice, ‘Find something you enjoy to take your mind off the hard times’.
That really isn’t the point though. There are lots of things that are fun and enjoyable but don’t help you overcome the demons.
Drinking makes you forget and smoking makes you relax. They help you get through the night, or on occasion the day; but it’s a defense mechanism. You’ll never drink yourself out of a bad situation. I know, because I’ve tried many times.
In order to actually find a beneficial task or interest that honestly assists you, you have to do some real soul searching.
Perhaps I am taking the lyrics too literally, but I do honestly believe that the writers of this song struck a chord by using the term ‘something,’ and then specifying songs and tales.
Finding something that is inanimate may be a real key to getting this type of advice to work.
You can’t live for someone. I’ve tried that too, and it doesn’t seem to make much of a difference, if anything it has a negative result.
I would never say that it isn’t important to have people you love in your life. They provide support in so many ways, whether it’s financially, emotionally or physically helping you with something.
But trying to use a person as a means of happiness in your life is toxic.
There’s nothing wrong from deriving pleasure from being in a relationship with someone; and not just a romantic relationship. Friendships and family are all different types of relationships that have their own important role.
It’s when you begin to depend on that relationship that it becomes toxic. If you consolidate all of the pleasure in your life into one or two various types of relationships then there will come a time when those sources of meaning will run dry; and then you are in real trouble.
Find a memory in your life that reminds you of a time when you were happy, learn a song by heart so you can sing it to lift your soul. Find an activity or hobby that you really care about. Study it and learn it, so that if for some reason you need to remove yourself from life for a little while, there is an open door right in front of you.