The last class of the semester is always my favourite class. Not because of the fact that it’s the last class, or the fact that it signifies the winding down of the semester but because it always ends with a class reflection. And during this class reflection, you get this short 3 minute window into another individuals life. It is that wonderful moment where they open up a part of themselves you wouldn’t see any other time during the school year. Today was no exception. And it moved me. It moved me to the point where I felt compelled to write about it.
So on behalf on the professor and my classmates who opened up their hearts today, I would like to pay it forward because I really benefitted from hearing it. And I think everyone needs to hear it.
So here are 3 important reminders you need in your life to keep going strong.
Reminder #1: The grass isn’t always greener on the other side. And if it is, it isn’t.
So many times we question our choices. We ask ourselves if the choice we made was the right one. We imagine how “wonderful” our life might have been if we had chosen another path. And we begin to break down if the choice we made isn’t working out for us.
However, we need to remind ourselves that time spent contemplating on an alternative life path prevents you from making progress in the path you have taken. Remember, it is not about the choices you make or didn’t make. It is how you choose to fully utilize the path you have chosen for yourself and to deal with the consequences of that choice.
We always picture the grass greener on the other side. And maybe it is. But that path has come and gone and the time you spend thinking about it is wasted energy. Instead, make the grass greener on your side. Water it everyday with an action plan, an open heart and a positive mindset. Give your grass the opportunity to be as green as it possibly can. But more importantly, believe that you are strong enough to handle the challenges of your choice. And never be afraid to ask for help.
Reminder #2: You are not as irreplaceable as the job market makes you out to be
It’s unnerving the number of times I hear professors tell us that in the real world, we are replaceable. There is always another fresh grad who can take our place or someone who is willing to work for cheaper or that one day our job could and most probably would be replaced by technology. And they mean well because that in fact is the reality of the world we live in. But that is only one aspect of your life. But because we are constantly worried about our livelihood, it is easy to forget that our resume does not exclusively define us. There are so many other aspects of our life that make up our character and who we are. And we as individuals are not replaceable.
I have a friend who is a painter. And during a reflective night-cap, he shared with me something that his mentor told him.
Art is subjective. But any piece in the world is always valuable to someone. Because of its beauty or what it means or the fact that it can never be perfectly replicated. Life is our canvas, the experiences we have are the materials that we use to paint on that canvas. And thus you are valuable to someone. You are beautiful. You mean something to someone whether you believe it or not. And you can never be perfectly replicated.
You are irreplaceable. And don’t ever forget that. The question is, what are you going to put on your canvas in order for you to feel proud of yourself.
Reminder #3: Success is easily attainable when you set your own goals
When you set your own goals, you automatically make your goals more realistic compared to if you followed someone else’s goal. Furthermore, when the goal is yours, you find more meaning in working towards it. You become more hardworking, determined and motivated, which is half the battle.
And sometimes you might not reach your goal. We’ve all been there. But while we may feel disappointed, we won’t have any regrets. Because firstly, this was a conscious choice you made for yourself. Secondly, you feel a sense of accomplishment because of the hard work you put in and no one can take that achievement away from you.
A classmate of mine said it perfectly.
“Success is a pattern you create from within”
So don’t let external factors define your success.
These were 3 important reminders for me personally. It was a summary of all the experiences shared by my classmates.
There is so much we can learn from one another. We don’t need to look far for advise. We don’t need guru’s, life coaches or motivational books. Sure they help. But if we took the time to listen to each other, we will realize the best advice always come for those around you because more often then not, they are going through some of the same issues as you.
Don’t be afraid to share your story. You never know who it’ll help.
I would like to leave you with 2 great videos that was shared by our professor. Enjoy.