What I’ve learned in 2017

It’s the end of 2017. And, I would like to wish all my readers “Happy New Year! Give yourself a pat on the back. You have done great things!” No matter how your life has turned out to be, be it good or bad, or even the worst for the past few years, you definitely need to praise yourself for the little good things you have done, no matter how insignificant they are.

It’s just like what has been illustrated in the following quote images:

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  1. It is because I believe in the butterfly effect. You might think that your little good deeds have made little or no difference to your life and the world. However, please remember that good things do not happen overnight. Besides, good things cannot really happen based on one’s effort. When one person has done a little good deed out of her pure kindness, it will take some time for her good deed to be snowballed together with other people’s good deeds through the passage of time till the point when the accumulation of every single good deed gives birth to a miracle whereby the good outcomes of all our good deeds manifest.

  2. It’s the same as your effort on a project or life goal you have worked on. Always remember that it’s alright if you have only achieved little. You might be going through your biggest life crisis. What I mean by the biggest life crisis can be physical, mental or spiritual. Sometimes, our life seems okay and we should be grateful and happy but there might be an internal battle in us that is always not obvious to others, for example, your mental illness, schizophrenia. Everyone has their own battle so just do not compare yourself with others and make your progress on your own pace.

  3. There’s no one ruler for everyone. There’s no one evaluation system for everyone. Just like the movie “Wonder”, don’t be right, be kind to others and yourself. The rightness in the world doesn’t apply to you. Deep down, your heart knows what’s right as love is woven in your soul. When love flows naturally and effortlessly from your heart, you know what’s right and you will act based on the true love you feel.

  4. Although sometimes people say that doing a good deed just for yourself to gain happiness through helping others is a selfish deed, please remember that it’s definitely alright to help others in order to feel happy. It is because this is the nature of human beings. We, human beings, have been created in a way that when we reach out to the needy and make selfless sacrifices to create positive changes in other people’s lives, we gain our bliss. Bliss is different compared to happiness and it feels far more better than happiness. Happiness is when you get to savour the best culinary delights, wear the best clothing, etc.  while bliss is when you see happiness in their eyes. What kind of positive changes that you can create in people’s life? Positive changes which are beneficial for them in the long term and they should come with minimal negative effects.

  5. It takes time to know what is the right way to reach out to the needy so that you provide the most appropriate assistance at the right timing when they really need it. In order to do this, it is not easy, It takes time for you to understand the needy and broken souls, before you know what is the best course of action. What you think is the best for them might be hurting or unbeneficial for them. You have not walked their life. Of course, you can couple your expertise with your understanding towards their life in order to decide the best course of action. You mustn’t be only effective in helping them, you have to help them in a gentle manner because love is gentle. Communication and listening is very important at this phase, before you start to educate and guide. 

  6. Sometimes, we do not need anything from others when we are down but just a listening ear or silent companionship. People should be treated with respect and dignity, but not like pets. Listen to the people around you. Sometimes, what they need is just respect and dignity. It’s just like how I feel hurt when people trivialize mental illness into something negative and to be ashamed of even though they know that I have been mentally ill. Although it’s not physical, but this is emotional abuse.

  7. What’s silent companionship? Do not get me wrong. I don’t mean that I prefer people to keep silent when they see me suffering. Sometimes, turning a blind eye to my suffering and just move on with life as if it is a small issue hurts the most. For me, silent companionship means you still meet me regularly as always, talk to me about the good and bad things in our life. You secretly hope to remind me of the good things in life to brighten me up, yet you will disclose your life challenges to let me know that you are experiencing bad things too and we are battling the bad feelings together. Maybe you are telling me indirectly that it is okay to feel sad or depressed as this is normal as a human being, instead of appearing overly positive in front me to the extent that you make me feel left out.

  8. You might ask me about my negative predicaments or you might not. If you are my senior and you certainly have encountered the same problem or you have met people who have overcome the same problem, then you might ask me many questions which require no answers from me. You are just there to guide me to find my inner self. Deep down, you know that you do not have the answers to my life and only me myself know my very own destiny ingrained in my heart and soul. You are just reminding myself to ask my heart what I really cherish in my very own life.

  9. If you are clueless of how to help me, you will just stay with me while I am depressed by keeping silent about my negative predicament. However, you will always give me your full attention with your listening heart when what I want is just a listening ear. You will always remind me of my life worth, no matter how big is the mess in my life. And, you will always make my happiness your priority but not my career, relationship status, etc.

  10. At some points, you might realise that some significant ones in your life are not able to provide the kind of love and support you need. Then, it’s time to walk out of their life. You are not doing it out of hatred or anger, but you are doing it out of self-love. It’s alright to end a friendship or relationship, even though when it means hurting others as I know you are the one who has been hurt again and again all this while. You are not different or odd to be not able to feel loved around certain people. You are special. Your scars make you stand out. Only God knows how it’s like to be abused again and again throughout our life on this earth. We might be overly sensitive but our weakness is our strength. After some many heartbreaks, our love only grows stronger. Even a small good deed from a stranger is enough to bring tears to my eyes. The highest love might be the ability to mourn for someone you don’t know. We are not here to please everyone. Nobody is perfect but I am certain you are beautiful. For me, I won’t hesitate to walk away from someone who does not appreciate and cherish my mental health journey as a schizophrenic patient.

  11. Our life journey is like boarding a train. Our train will go through many stations where it stops to let go some passengers and take in new ones. People in our life are like these train passengers. Some people are bound to be with you for only a short period or maybe a long period, but not till the final destination. Separation hurts sometimes, but do not forget to enjoy the beautiful views during your train journey as once something passes, you might not see it anymore. Do celebrate the remaining passengers in your train. People who are destined not to reach the final destination together with you might break your heart. However, in the future, when you look back, you will see that the separation is worthwhile. God has the best plan for you. You might not see or feel it, it doesn’t mean God is not doing His work to create miracles in your life.

  12. Of course, there are some passengers who left the train but have boarded your train again. These passengers are the precious ones. And, no matter what is the past, it’s time to forgive and let go of the past instead of letting your past continues to haunt you. Time might have changed them. They are no longer the same people who left you last time. And, there might be a good reason why they are back. If you feel good vibes from them, why not let them come onboard!

  13. There are also certain passengers who would like to stay on the train with you but they are forced to leave due to some circumstances created by God. Maybe you have gained much from them and in order for both your lives to be better, both of you need to say goodbye and head towards your own destinations respectively. God have two different life assignments for you two. No matter how saddening is it, it is for a good reason. And you should be glad that both your lives have crossed one another at certain points.

  14. If you want to leave your current comfort zone in order to explore new things in another space, it’s never too late. You might feel insecure of leaving behind what you have, but please remember that our life is about how to give and take freely. You might need to give away some good things but I am sure other good things which you have not experienced will be on your way if you turn the direction of your life ship boldly.

  15. And, please make your life your own. Enjoy your good food, spend time with people whom you love, enjoy the companionship of those who make you feel loved but not suffocated, read your favourite book, write about your life while celebrating it, etc. And do not forget to nourish your life with nutritious, good food and adequate amount of physical exercise as well as sleep. Keep yourself away from people who are toxic to your life happiness even though they insist that they love you. They might have loved you the wrong way. You have to save yourself, before saving others. We are born to be respected, understood, appreciated and loved. Follow your intuition all the time. You will thank yourself for that in the future.

  16. It’s not about the quantity of loved ones you have. It’s about the quality. Love shouldn’t be quantified as it is immense and infinite. It’s about quality. It’s about whether it is good or bad. If it’s bad love, it has never been love at all. Action speaks louder than words. It’s more than enough to have a few sincere and understanding companions. When life is simple, it’s in its best state.

  17. Life can be simple and joyful. The simple mindfulness in doing small things in your daily life like doing aerobics, writing an article, cooking, cleaning the house, reading a book, etc. can be very therapeutic and healing for your body and soul. Great things are found in the smallest things in our life. Keep it as your healthy routine and you will reap immense benefits day-by-day. It’s hard to get started, but you just need to give yourself a push. You may take baby steps. It’s alright. You might fall back to depression sometimes but please do not give up. Just be consistent in your effort and I believe you can develop your healthy daily habits of mindfulness.

  18. When you look back at your life, you will realise that you have changed a lot through the passage of time. There were different points when you felt happy or depressed. However, you have learnt that the reasons behind your good and bad moods have evolved over the time as you age. No matter what is your current life condition, you are certainly a better person today compared to the past. There have been different life challenges along the way and you fall into a deep valley for a different reason at every point.  However, that’s how you can grow into a well-rounded person. Our life is a school. You just need to keep learning from all your failures and make it your life-long learning.

  19. You might be given some chances to take a clear route, instead of the route not taken. Always pick the route not taken which you are anticipating. Although the clear route might give you an easy life, it will be boring with no self-growth. I know we should not stress ourselves, but we should not stop taking chances and instead we should create great things and make positive changes. This is our calling. We love ourselves by taking good breaks from time to time. Not only that, our love for the magnitude of our life always push us to put in efforts to inspire other lives by working on our own life conscientiously and lovingly.

  20. While we are trying to learn the greatest lesson in our life which is love, we might make some mistakes unintentionally or we might feel tired and stuck somewhere, but please do not punish yourself or feel guilty. Feeling sorry to yourself and others doesn’t help but only makes you feel bad. Instead of feeling sorry, work harder by taking the right course of action. Just do it with your heart. Love in our heart always conquers all. Love is the answer. Love yourself so that you can also love others.

 

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