Lately I find myself thinking quite a bit about opportunity. For a while it seemed like nothing was going my way; every turn taken would lead me farther away from my goals and one problem would lead to another. Each day was a repeat of the last and altogether daunting from beginning to end. Getting out of bed was a trial and getting back into bed was the highlight of the day.
One morning, however, as I lay in bed not wanting to peel the covers from my body and face the world something occurred to me that I had previously overlooked: maybe the world isn’t the problem; maybe the problem is me and how I am perceiving the world in which I live.
I think that for many of us it is easy to blame others for our problems; it is easier to sit there enveloped in misery and a feeling of being wronged than to stand up and acknowledge that if something is tremendously wrong in our lives we are partially (if not entirely) to blame for it. If something does not go the way we plan, we as human beings look for the source of why; we look for something or someone to blame. Few, if any of us, take the time to take a cold hard look at ourselves as the possible source of the problem. If we did we might find that instead of blaming others for our failures, we can only find fault in ourselves.
At a young age many of us somehow learn that it is ok to blame others for our shortcomings. We come up with excuses for any number of things from unfinished homework to why we punched someone on the playground. We learn to find fault in others before we find fault in ourselves. Years later this translates into a way of life for many adults. We find excuse after excuse for why we are not to blame for something to the point where we even fault others for our own personal decisions in life; the decisions that have absolutely nothing to do with anyone else.
With that being said I think that the moment we start truly thinking about our failures/problems in all aspects of our lives and the role we personally play in them, we can begin to see things in a whole new light. Instead of looking outward and finding fault, we can look inward and see fault as an opportunity; a chance to bring change to ourselves and those around us. We can see emptiness as an opportunity for fulfillment, darkness as an opportunity to find light, and sadness as an opportunity to find happiness.
Throughout our lives we are going to come face to face with situations that are going to challenge us in ways that none of us can predict. We will be thrown curve balls that will make it seem like the world is the enemy and we are being continually kicked while we are down. This thinking, however, is toxic; it propagates the notion that we have no control over the events of our lives or the direction they take as a result of the decisions that follow, two things that I refuse to accept.
Each event is a chance for change and a new outlook. Every flawed outcome is an opportunity and every fault is a chance to better ourselves. We need to start looking to ourselves for change and to stop seeing others as the reasons why our lives have not turned out the way we have planned. Every day is an opportunity for more: to have more and to be more. Through change we grow and it all simply begins with seeing the world as an endless source of opportunity. Only when we realize this can we be who we want to be and have what we want to have.
Until next time…stay classy.