Mistakes are inevitable, they’re needed. They’re the experiences that mould us, that enable us to grow. They’re also the experiences that debilitate us or set us free. But ultimately it’s our lot in life to make mistakes. Yes, that age old adage of ‘you learn from your mistakes’ and whilst some we do. I believe some we continue to make over and over. Granted, we do learn from them, but not in order to avoid them next time, as some are an inevitable passage of life, but this time we’re armed with experience and might have a clearer roadmap on how to navigate the rocky road that is no doubt paved with the mistakes we’re about to make, we’re able to pick up the shattered pieces that are bound to scatter and slowly with more confidence and surety piece them back together.
Our writing prompt for WP Finding Everyday Inspiration, Day 2 Write a List. Of the available topics, I chose ‘Things I’ve Learnt’. Naturally I get excited at the word lists, because that’s what I do. Being an OCD, I love lists. My work life encompasses a plethora of lists and project planning and ticking off that box. But today’s list is of a different kind. The kind that stems from life’s ups and downs and boy do I have more than my share of experiences to draw on. But for this prompt, I thought I’d keep this list short and sweet and reiterate those that stand out to me as being important and sometimes the non negotiable’s in life.
I’ve learnt that people often say one thing and mean another. Without intention, but ultimately it’s those unspoken words that make or break relations. We enter into relations with the opposite sex based on their perception, their verbal and non verbal actions and give our everything. We expose ourselves, our lives, our weaknesses and our strengths. Because isn’t that what we do when we meet a member of the opposite sex, a prospective partner that we’re comfortable with and give 100% of ourselves, only to have these fundamentals that make up our true selves, thrown back in our face in some form or another or used against us with the subtle underlying message ‘I might have expressed this was what I wanted out of a relationship and a partner, because it’s what everyone says but secretly I actually wanted perfection’. And so I’ve learnt that men are fickle creatures and sometimes Men are From Mars and Woman are From Venus and even that doesn’t resolve to understand the chasm that might lay between you like an unspoken vow.Another lesson I’ve learnt the hard way are that toxic friends come in all forms and this toxicity is not always evident at the onset. Securing friendships that at first seem wholesome and you settle into a comfortable life surrounding yourself with friends whom you trust and form alliances with and indulge in everyday conundrums, life and activity. Only to subtly realise over the years, looking back on the little things, you notice a patten of ‘use and abuse’ from the very same friends you thought were there for you with no ulterior motives. In essence I’ve learnt that your quality of life cannot be improved by surrounding yourself with negative energy, by friends who bring you down, who are constantly pessimistic or feel the need to indulge in a power play over and over. Friendship is not a contest. It’s an oasis, a safe and inspiring one and if you feel your friends are not bringing out the best in you, it might just be time to severe those toxic ties.
I’ve learnt over the years that I’ve lost respect for people or friends I’ve admired and been in close circles with who have proven their true worth by not standing up for what they believe in, for what is right and will not back you up or speak out with you, simply because they’re afraid of upsetting the status quo, being an outcast, and risk the possibility of losing relationships and that is one of my saddest realisations in this life. It certainly goes a long way in knowing who you can trust. Align yourself with people and friends who believe in what is right and will stand up for it, even if it means going against the grain and standing alone. This is a quality to be admired and treasured in someone.
I often hear the question ‘Do you have any regrets’? and no surprise the answer is mostly ‘No’. I shake my head in dismay because most of us certainly have regrets of some kind in some small form. No one has lived a flawless life. Most of us have navigated through adversity, heartache or regret and so, I can only deduce, most of us would wish to undue a decision/s at some point in time. And so I’ve learnt that it’s quite common practice to go with the norm, what society expects us to say. Why do we find it so hard to just say what we mean and mean what you say. We all have regrets. I for one, have a few and would love my fairy godmother to wave her magic wand and give me a do over at certain times in my complex life to have made different decisions that I know would have led me down a different path and affected loved ones differently. Wall have regrets and that’s not such a bad thing to acknowledge. Such is life.