Let's get a bit deep with this week's blog post and discuss a topic that makes its rounds on every Twitter or Instagram account devoted to existential millennial problems - filling the void. I was initially exposed to the notion of the void by one of my favourite authors, Chuck Palahniuk, back in high school when I discovered Invisible Monsters and, soon after, Fight Club. The former establishes the brutality of the modelling industry and our idea of self-image by having the main character shoot herself in the face, and the latter encourages us to combat compulsory consumption by literally beating it out of ourselves.
These are heavy topics for a teenager to grasp at a time when all I really cared about was getting into university and getting a boyfriend. However, as the years went on I was faced with the two aforementioned issues head on - body image and spending money became the most important things to me at one point and it was scary. My focus on my consumption of food was a way for me to gain control in a world of disorganization, and my consumption of useless items became a signifier of my purpose. Both were/are damaging habits, but only recently have I been able to look back at my behaviour and recognize that.
2017 has been a year of self-reflection and it's really made me wonder: Is life just about trying to fill the void? Are we so uncomfortable with whatever our true, current experience is that we need some sort of external stuffing to help us make sense of it all? I've talked to a few friends about this topic and they've all brought up their own, unique void fillers (excessive dating, using writing and entertainment as a form of escape, etc); the similarity being how quick they were to pinpoint them. So, maybe my question isn't necessarily whether or not we have void fillers, but whether we are willing to live with them after we recognize their existence.
I still struggle with my eating habits and frivolous spending, so I know that fillers can't just be shaken off even after facing them. However, I have made them a starting point for self-improvement in the coming year. Sure, no one is perfect and our flaws can't be brushed off like a a piece of lint on clothing, but I don't think it necessarily means we are stuck with being a product of them forever.
I'd love to know what you think about void fillers and what yours are.