Having recently hit the new 40 hour mobile listening limit on Pandora, I’ve started listening to my old iTunes library on my hefty fifth generation 2005 iPod on my way to work. It’s funny how you can listen to an old song for the 100th time and hear it in an entirely new way. That’s what happened to me when “Life For Rent” by Dido came up on my playlist. I suddenly couldn’t get enough of the lyrics that I’d heard so many times before because I’d never actually stopped to listen to what she was saying. Her message really makes you wonder is your life for rent?
What Is The Meaning Of Is Your Life For Rent?
The recurring chorus in Dido’s song Life For Rent is so simple, yet it can stir up a lot of emotions and really makes you think.
If my life is for rent and I don’t learn to buy
Well I deserve nothing more than I get
Cos nothing I have is truly mine
While we don’t literally buy or rent out our lives, we are ultimately responsible for the actions we choose to or not to take. Do you feel like you are just going through the motions day after day with no sense of purpose? That is one way to interpret “renting” your life. In order to become a buyer, you need to untemplate your mind, get over your fears, give yourself a fighting chance and go against the grain.
Take A Chance On Love
Another way to interpret the song and find the answer to is your life for rent, is to let yourself become a “buyer” by taking a chance on love. I know that relationships are hard and we’ve all gone through just plain awful breakups. But even if you’ve had your heart broken, you owe it to yourself to give love a second chance whether it’s working things out with your current significant or opening your heart to someone new.
And don’t worry if you haven’t found someone yet no matter what age you are. Don’t get too hung up on the scary and vulnerable emotions of putting yourself out there, try to focus on the fun and exciting aspects instead. Nobody’s perfect and remember that support goes a long way in every relationship because even the strongest bonds experience hiccups and difficult times.
Follow Your Gut In Your Career
Even though the majority of people aren’t working at their dream job, that doesn’t mean you have to succumb to the same unhappiness for the rest of your life. It’s hard to know what you want to do when you first graduate especially if you haven’t experienced full time work before. Just don’t convince yourself you’re doomed for life if you don’t like the first job you get after graduation.
Recognize too that most entry level jobs have unappealing sides to them and that it just takes time to get experience under your belt. If you work hard now you’ll have more options and qualifications for better work later. And don’t underestimate the questions to ask yourself before you quit your job. If your gut tells you that you’re not on the right path or the company you work for doesn’t appreciate you, follow your instincts and find a better fit where you can thrive.
Get Out And See The World
So many of my friends who are my age or older tell me they wish they traveled more before having kids. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to travel if you’re willing to take buses, trains, and stay with friends or in hostels. There are so many incredible places to see in the world and it’s a lot easier to do when you’re young, full of energy, and have less responsibilities.
There are still a lot of places I want to see before I kick the bucket, but I can sense that my travel bug is starting to fade as I get older each year. So I’m really fortunate that I was so active traveling abroad in my 20’s. Otherwise I think I’d have a lot of regrets.
Plan For Your Future Even If You Don’t Know Where You’re Headed
“Don’t expect anyone else to support you. Maybe you have a trust fund, maybe you have a wealthy spouse; but you never know when either one might run out.” – Mary Schmich
If you haven’t figured out where you want your relationship or career to go, at least get your personal finance situation sorted out. You can’t live a carefree untemplate lifestyle if you’re always strapped for cash without any savings or safety net in place. Planning for the future doesn’t have to be complicated either. So if you want to answer “no” to the question is your life for rent? start getting proactive and take control of your financial situation.
Don’t Let The Fear Of Failure Prevent You From Trying
Fear can be paralyzing, especially the fear of failure. But guess what? Everyone fails at something! So cut yourself some slack. Even the most successful people have had to get past tons of missteps, losses, and fails to reach success. And even if you don’t succeed you will thank yourself for trying and giving it your best shot.
Otherwise if you let the fear of failure lead your life, you’ll end up with too many regrets. And that’s just as bad as living your life for someone else instead of yourself. So take a stand and push yourself to get up the courage to try something new today!
Untemplaters, is your life for rent? Do you have a different interpretation of Dido’s song Life For Rent? Do you feel in control of your life and headed in a positive direction? If you feel that you’re still a “renter,” what steps do you hope to take in order to become a “buyer?”
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This song many questions…
And as always it depends on our perspective.
Do we see renting as instability or freedom?
Not belonging anywhere or belonging everywhere?
Admitting fear: continuing in it or letting it go?
Troy in Las Vegas says
Travel is a big thing really as one can gain much cultural experience from doing so yet you are right, it can be expensive…which also means it can also be affordable if one finds a way to make it so.
“Do you feel like you are just going through the motions day after day with no sense of purpose? That is one way to interpret “renting” your life.” I believe that is what ‘renting’ means in this song and the ‘buying’ part means to take your own actions and chart your own courses.
Thank you for this post.
Thanks for your comment Troy. Yeah I agree. We have to take control of our destiny and find ways to make our own dreams come true.
Edward Antrobus says
Personally, I don’t put too much effort into “making the most out of life.” I just don’t take it that seriously. After all, we aren’t getting out of it alive. 🙂
Haha true but we all hopefully have a long ways to go. You definitely strike me as a laid back type of guy.
I think I am in control! If I weren’t, I would make changes.
That’s good you feel in control and are happy! So many people aren’t even willing to recognize that they have the power and responsibility to make their own choices and change their future.
Jenny @ Frugal Guru Guide says
It’s not just about giving things a try but putting enough dedication behind them that they have a chance to succeed. A half-hearted try is worse than nothing.
Actually wanting to succeed matters too because simply going through the motions can still get you from A to B but without any meaning or self fulfillment. Trying half heartedly certainly isn’t good but I think that’s still better than doing nothing at all.