“Every time you look back at moments gone by, you can look with disappointment or experience the relief of knowing you did the best you could.” ~ Damini Grover
Life is nothing more than a collection of moments.
Moments that come and go while giving the illusion they will stay forever. But nothing stays forever and certainly, nothing remains the same.
Everything is changing, growing, evolving at a faster pace than we realize. Life is constantly throwing challenges and waiting for us to stand up or surrender. There are no absolutes. There are no rights or wrongs. Everything is subjective and relative.
That’s how we grow—in the grey areas of life where, without realizing it, we blend the whites, blacks, and other colors of life.
Amidst the challenges life throws at us, there are lessons. Like playing a game with levels; the higher you go, the more difficult it gets. However, at each level, you get something to support, save or give you the extra push you need. To advance, you must ace the previous level including minding your mistakes and rectifying them.
As we progress through life, we’re constantly adding layers to our existence. We’re also removing some in the process. Even though I hate mathematics, I have to say that life is a constant process of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. New dynamics are created every day and we struggle constantly to find workable solutions that make the game of life smoother for us.
In my game of life and I’m sure it’s the same for a lot of us, I’ve encountered many lessons, which I’m still working through today.
1. You can’t stay where you are even if you want to.
Our comfort zones are not so comfortable after all. Eventually, all comfort turns into discomfort, resentment, or regret tied with the thought ”I wish I had, I wish I could. If I’d only…” In the end, our life is only as good as the chances we didn’t take.
2. Our sense of purpose also exists at two levels.
Our first and foremost purpose is to understand ourselves and let our being evolve. It is to “be.” Our second purpose stems from our being and allows us to expand our vision so we can be a part of a bigger universe. Therefore, we exist within two universes—ours and one beyond.
3. Our internal connectedness impacts our external connections.
The more disconnected we are within ourselves, the more we will have trouble connecting with others and the world. We may have a great number of relationships, but whether they are the ones that would fulfill our souls, is another question altogether.
4. There are forces beyond our control.
Control is an illusion. It doesn’t exist. And yes, there are things and events taking place that we can’t fathom. Therefore, it’s essential to go within and work with whatever it is that we can influence.
5. We only have now.
The past is already gone. The future hasn’t arrived yet. We only have this moment. Our future is nothing but a collection of moments in the present. To create a better tomorrow, we need to act now and not wait for it to show up one day.
6. Relationships will always be complex.
We have to continue to simplify and untie the complex knots on our own.
7. We cannot control the fate of any relationship or anything for that matter.
We may give fate a little nudge every now and then, but that’s all that we can do.
8. People will leave us.
We will be abandoned and rejected. We all have a timeline in each other’s lives. We have a role or a purpose to fulfill and once that’s done, it’s time for us to move on.
9. Failure will always be lurking around the corner.
It’s up to us whether to treat it as a teacher or a monster.
10. We are ultimately a product of our beliefs.
What we hold as true, will govern our thoughts, feelings, and responses. And yes, at the core we are all responsible for our own lives.
These are just some lessons from my really long list and there’s still one more that I cannot help but mention—it’s not always your fault. When life throws sh*t at us and we struggle to understand why it happened to us, the most convenient explanation to go to is “self-blame.” Yes, even though we are responding based on our beliefs, we are not always the source of things. Just like we are responsible for ourselves, so are others.
We must learn to differentiate between what are we creating in our lives and what are we tolerating from others. Hence, we’re not always wrong and everything is not our fault either.
It’s about our perspective.
While life may be a game metaphorically, in reality, there are no wins or losses.