Sometimes I catch myself staring at the people around me – studying their mannerisms and expressions. I wonder, “What is their story? What are they searching for? What makes their heart beat with happiness, with sorrow, with fear, with longing?” And then I ask myself, “What words might I post on this blog to inspire them, and to remind them that, even on the toughest of days, our hearts all beat for these same things?”
Today I figured I’d share some of these words with you…
- We are all in this together. – Nobody has it easy, we all have issues. When you look at a person, any person, remember that everyone has a story. Everyone has gone through something that has changed them, and forced them to grow. Every passing face on the street represents a story every bit as compelling and complicated as yours. You will never know exactly what they are going through, and they will never know exactly what you are going through. We are all fighting our own unique war. But we are fighting through it simultaneously, together. Read The Road Less Traveled.
- You aren’t supposed to be perfect. – Live life. Experience everything. Take care of yourself and those closest to you. Have fun – be a little crazy and weird. Go out and make mistakes – you’re going to anyway. Enjoy yourself, and exploit the countless opportunities to learn something along the way. Figure out what works and what doesn’t. Don’t try to be perfect; just be an excellent example of being human and being YOU.
- There are reasons to smile all around you. – A teenage girl blushed when I caught her playfully tickling her boyfriend as he looked for a book in the library – I smiled. A middle aged man got down on his knees and lovingly scratched his dog behind the ears as they waited to cross the street – I smiled. A little girl skipped in bright white shoes that were obviously new, happily kicking her feet far out in front of her to admire them – I smiled. On days when you don’t have much in your life to smile about, watch those who do and you’ll smile too.
- Tough times help us grow. – We work hard to disown the parts of our lives that were painful, difficult, or sad. But just as we can’t rip chapters out of a book and expect the story to still make sense, so we cannot rip past chapters out of our lives and expect our lives to still make sense. Keep every chapter of your life intact, and keep on turning the pages. Sooner or later you’ll get to a page that brings it all together and you’ll suddenly understand why every page and chapter before it was needed.
- Repetition is not failure. – In those frustrating moments when you find yourself standing face to face with an issue you battled before – one bearing a lesson you were sure you’d already learned – remember, repetition is not failure. Ask the waves, ask the leaves, ask the wind. Repetition is sometimes required to evolve and grow.
- No matter what, you have a purpose. – Having a bad day? It’s okay. Put your hand on your heart. Feel that? That’s called ‘purpose.’ You’re alive for a reason. Don’t give up. You may lose the people you love. You may lose the things you have. But no matter happens, never lose yourself. Read A New Earth.
- Being true to yourself is always the best option. – Being true to yourself is way better than being a liar just to impress everyone else. Don’t change so people will like you. You may not live up to everyone’s standards, but there are people out there who will love you just the way you are. And besides, people will judge you regardless, so you might as well be yourself when they do.
- You don’t always have to be happy and cheerful. – Sometimes you have to deal with issues and show others your uncomfortable side. It’s perfectly okay – it’s a natural part of being human. And the good news is that these tough moments will often show you who will accept you at your worst and who won’t.
- Right now is a fresh start. – Talk about your blessings more than you talk about your problems. It’s a bright new day – a new beginning. Your future is too bright to waste it fighting needless battles with old issues from the past. Read The Power of Now.
- It’s okay to let some things go. – You need to understand that none of us are playing with marked cards; sometimes we win and sometimes we lose – life always finds its balance. Don’t expect to get back everything you give, don’t expect recognition for all your efforts, and don’t expect your genius to be instantly discovered or your love to be understood by everyone. As you live and experience things, you must recognize what works and what doesn’t, what belongs and what doesn’t, and then let things go when you know you should. Not out of pride, inability, or arrogance, but simply because not everything is supposed to fit into your life. Close the door, change the record, clean the house, get rid of the dust. Stop being who you were so you can become who you are.
Photo by: D. Sharon Pruitt