Wednesday, 21 October 2015

We Define Ourselves!

Over the years I have formed "my way of life" - the way I think I am most comfortable living. Please note, I am not using emotions such as 'happy' or 'satisfied' rather 'comfortable'. It is primarily because happiness or satisfaction is likely to be a part of one part of my life, but equally likely to be not part of another. In either scenario, how I need to be - as a person, as a human...that, I think, is my decision. And I have chosen to be comfortable.

When one starts believing in philosophical statements, such as - "everything happens for a reason and for the good", a bit of complacency sets in. This complacency gets directed towards others. Anyone who finds life to be less than ideal and comes to me - even if not for help, but just to discuss - I relate to the situation in terms of "what would I do & how?" - not really as, "what should this person think about & how should this person deal with it?". Problem with this approach is obvious - the person leaves more hurt or more confused than he / she was before discussing things with me. I acknowledge this...

Earlier this month I saw a message online - which was trending on Twitter then...a cancer survivor had raised a question, "what good has come out of my getting cancer?" This cancer survivor was essentially challenging hollowness of words, which are thrown around when people don't know the actual pain someone is going through. Words that should sound comforting, come across as hurtful instead. 'Comforting words' are an example of complacency and lack of empathy, if coming from a person who hasn't gone through anything similar in his / her personal life.

Reading this message, of the cancer survivor, made me think & question my state of comfort. I couldn't answer her question: "what good has come out of my getting cancer?". This challenged my own state of mind, I began to wonder whether I was living in comfort of dealing with my share of 'less than ideal situations' OR was I living in state of denial all together (being an ostrich).

As life would have it - I soon found my answer in Andrew Solomon's talk on TedHe shares some of his personal experiences and some experiences of others - where life situation was far from ideal and how he now believes these experiences really make life more meaningful.

Though Andrew's talk is both, easy to understand & comprehensive, I will still end this post with my take from it: good & bad will come our way in varying measure, what we decide to do and how we allow ourselves to be led / burdened - that is our choice.

We define ourselves!

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