Complacency Kills

Everyday people give up on themselves, but I don’t want that to be you. The person you are now is someone only you can understand. The first steps to a better you will be some of the most challenging moments you will ever endure. Just …breathe….. Everything is okay. You will soon realize you have something within you that will inspire others, something so truly astonishing. Be sure to have a purpose and never forget it. We were all brought to this world for a reason, now it’s time to show them yours. – Justen

First off, I would like to thank Dorothy, who is letting me use her platform to discuss a very important topic: Complacency.

Now, I’m no writer, especially not as good as Dorothy (Note from Dorothy: “Pssshhh!! Yeah, right!), but I want to take a shot at possibly changing at least one person’s perspective, to show readers the real power is within us.  

For me, “complacency” means not recognizing or considering you have the ability to change. It’s letting your life go by without ever really enjoying it.

When you are complacent, you want to be comfortable and never challenged.

You might even avoid change because you’re worried how it might affect others or if people will judge you.

And sometimes, you may be complacent and not even realize it.

I recently lost myself for awhile until, one day, I realized my own complacency. There was a time when I was very exuberant, a time when I wasn’t distracted by the blockades I’d set in my own path. I call these blockades “excuses,” and I had several.

Instead of accomplishing goals and living life to the fullest, I told myself I needed more time to relax. As soon as I felt stressed out, I withdrew from anything that made me feel wearisome.

There were plenty of times I passed up activities with friends or neglected responsibilities and tasks. I was living the same old day over and over again – a modern version of the movie Groundhog Day. 

During that time, I was in a failing relationship, which I now realize was a big part of my complacency. I created some big blockades that held me back from not only loving my significant other but, more importantly, loving myself. 

These blockades included family issues, a healthy diet, working only to gratify my superiors, and a non-existent social life. As a result, I went home everyday with no energy, played video games, and consumed junky, comfort foods. I let all those negative, outside sources completely take over my life, which eventually led to the end of my relationship. 

I had to sit back and really ask myself: “What went wrong?”

First, I wanted to blame my problems on everyone else. But what I came to realize was… it was me. And, I’ll say, this was one hard lesson to learn. 

Taking Control of my Complacency

I realized I’d stopped focusing on myself and my goals. All that time spent “comforting myself” when times were rough… Instead, I could’ve taken action to rectify my life.

Once I realized that, I started listing life goals.

The most important being: I needed to be more positive. When that happened, I started loving myself again. 

I hit the gym more, and I enrolled in college. I did things outside of work like hiking, scuba diving, volunteering with others, and being more adventurous.

All this helped me keep a clear head and be passionate about my goals.

I soon realized I wasn’t the only one in this funk. Several friends and family members felt the same. We were all victims of being complacent, and this made me want to write about it.

In my opinion, the real path to happiness is to love ourselves, and we do that by setting small goals to improve our quality of life.

I suggest writing down accomplishments you want to achieve and a realistic plan to succeed. This plan will make the process less overwhelming. And it will prove to yourself you can push through the hardest of times. 

Our life is a blank canvas, and we hold the paintbrush. We have the power to create something, anything, beautiful.

Life isn’t about living everyday complacent to wake up and do it all over again. It’s about living those dreams we all had when we were younger. It’s about not allowing life to knock us down and thinking it’s too hard to get back up. 

The way I see it, we all have two choices: We can choose to live every day complacent, or we can choose to set goals, work towards them, and make dreams happen.  Both paths are difficult, but we can choose what kind of difficult we want. I’ll leave that decision up to you…..

About the author

Justen Brooks currently serves in the United States Marine Corps and is stationed in Okinawa, Japan. He protects his country working as a Metrologist/Precision Measurement Calibration Technician and recently discovered a love of writing, which he hopes will motivate fellow soldiers and all readers. Justen is an advocate for self-confidence and self-empowerment. He wants to inspire readers, even those going through the darkest of times, to take control and live life to the fullest.


  1. Reading this has made me do a lot of thinking about my own life. For a long time, I have felt that my life was on hold. It seems that I’m always thinking when I get through this issue in my life, I can start living for me. So far that hasn’t happened. I am starting right now to decide what I want out of life. The sad part is I don’t know what my dreams are. Since I read this, I have started writing down any little thing that comes to my mind that could possibly be a dream or a goal that I can work on to bring happiness and purpose to my life no matter what my situation is.

    Thanks for writing this and keep the inspiration coming.

  2. Good stuff. It’s great to see you recognized the good and negative things you can work with.

  3. Great message. Inspirational. I couldn’t agree with you more. Proud of ya. Keep up the good work bud.

  4. This is incredible! It definitely touched a cord within me. So proud of you Justen and thank you for sharing these thoughts–because they definitely have me pondering my own life–in a good way and ways to change. Take care of yourself and keep writing–I see an amazing talent there. 🙂

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