The story told here is of two kids who live in a small village. Both were good in their studies and looked towards an amazing career ahead.
One was the son of a rich landlord and the other belonged to a poor weaving family. However, both kids were close friends.
The kid from the rich family had all the facilities to study well, while the other began to struggle. Showing up daily at school alone required resources the poor kid couldn’t afford.
Not surprisingly, the son of the landlord maintained excellence in exams, while the son of the weaver began to lag behind.
One day an old man visits the village and sees the son of the weaver working hard. He asks him why doesn’t he go to school. The kid explains his situation, without remorse or a hint of sadness. He, despite all, had a positive air about him.
The old man then proceeds to gift the young boy a piece of advice. He explains to him that no matter how hard he works, he only gets 24 hours a day to work. However, the most important thing is how he utilizes each hour.
The man told him “You can study well, as well as work and still get paid. You can do all you need to do if you use your time well”
You must plan your day well, the old man tells him. “You can't blame others for your situation. You're the maker of your day and your life. You can't blame your luck, your poor parents, or anything. It is your life.”
This short meeting with the old man became the turning point for the poor kid. He took responsibility for his life and accepted the facts about his life he couldn't change. Within a couple of weeks, the boy started going to school.
I tell the story above to illustrate to you the endless possibility life has to offer in the face of limited resources, poor background, and the absence of a support structure.
Larry Hill in his book explains metaphorically how we all have the power to make lemonades from the lemon life throws at us.
Life Isn’t Always Fair, But You Can Make It
I sleep and wake up each day with a deep understanding that nobody has it all. Those who seem to have it all, at one point or the other also suffered. And, even at the peak of so many people’s success, they know exactly what they have to struggle with, and their secret wars.
So, whenever I feel life has short-changed me, I do not act like I have it worse. All I need to do is ask myself if I have it as bad as the thousands of Jews who suffered in concentration camps at the hands of Nazis.
Life in concentration camps can't be imagined. These camps featured limited or no food; little or no sanitization; and make-shift shelter. Being there alone puts you at risk of being shot dead unprovoked.
Much lost hope and even more lost their lives. The few who survived only held on to life because of a hope of a future without miseries. Viktor Frankl was one such person. You could learn about his experience of the holocaust and concentration camp if you read his book, "Man's Search For Meaning".
So, I ask you, is your current situation worse than what was described in Nazi concentration camps? Definitely it is not. So, show gratitude that you're blessed with what you have.
Never Give Up
What do you do when things do not go your way?
Do you give up?
Do you abandon all efforts previously put in?
The truth is giving up is easy. Nobody is born a quitter. We all from childhood create our habits and those who give up only do it because that is all they know. When we can't do something that needs deliberate attempts until a certain level of proficiency is achieved, we give up and blame.
So, you have a choice and that choice is to never give up on your dreams and your goals. You are allowed to fail; make mistakes; get tired and even retreat. But, you cannot give up!
Samuel Beckett explains you can't believe it if you don't want it bad enough. When you want something so much that you can't live without it you increase your chances of getting it. You will put in the required effort and wouldn’t give up irrespective of how many times you fail
By not giving up, you lock yourself into a cycle of growth. This is much like when you start exercising. You begin to notice changes after some time. You would not want to drink that sugary cane that was part of your lunch. You start caring about what you eat.
Soon, in your quest, you come across awesome books on dieting which help you to know more about diets and exercises that could further improve your efforts. You learn about mushrooms and their multiple health benefits.
You will look back one day and see all you have achieved so far, and be surprised at all you have gained for not giving up.
Never Stop Growing
One last ingredient to living a happy and meaningful life is never to be obsessed with finishing. Oxford dictionary defines finish as" To complete something or to reach at the end of something".
But you would agree with me that learning never ends. Hence, you're never perfect or finished. There is always more to be done.
Donald Trump in his book explains the deceit of never stopping. Because once you do, getting back becomes a big problem.
You need to dedicate yourself to a life of giving and achieving things. Your story should be of one quest to another until the day you sleep.
Hold on to the things I have mentioned in this article, not religiously, but rather experimentally, and run with them for a few months. I am certain, you will begin to see the results.