Reflection is a must for me, it’s a mandatory block of time I’ve set aside everyday. I believe it’s important to stop and smell the roses at least five to ten minutes — everyday. This is especially important on those days it seems there’s more darkness than light. It’s those days where it can be very easy to conclude we’re just not strong enough to find our way out of the dark.
It’s easier said than done — thinking about the good in your life during moments it feels as if nothing’s going right except the bad. For myself, the time I spend smelling the roses helps me to regain focus. I’m talking about a five to ten minute reminder not to be so locked-in on one specific thing where I take for granted my overall blessings.
“It’s like a finger pointing away to the moon. Don’t concentrate on the finger or you will miss all that heavenly glory.” – Bruce Lee, Enter The Dragon
Staying Strong With Purpose
Back in January, 2011 it didn’t seem as if there were going to be any roses for me to smell anytime soon. I had just lost my job, of seven years, and found myself back among the unemployed. I wasn’t close to being prepared for what lay ahead for me.
My pockets had a little bit of savings, surely not enough to justify working all those years while not making sure to put something more away for a rainy day. To conclude I took for granted the opportunities provided during my time there, well, that would be an understatement.
The next two years of my life were an emotional roller-coaster with more lows than highs. I eventually found work, having to do temp work again to prove myself worthy of another chance to secure something more stable.
Having to prove yourself all over again can be a very humbling experience. Think about it. You work your butt off for years and, just when you think you have all the answers, life finds a way to change the questions on you.
I’ve always considered myself to be fortunate for having a support system. The reality of this world is we’re all not as blessed to have one. My family was there for me during my darkest days, they’ve always been there, but I was wearing their patience thin and I knew it.
It took awhile, but I eventually secured stable work again. There would be more trouble ahead, which I’ll save for a future post, but I look back on all of this today with very little regrets. I’m stronger today because of those dark days I endured, it helped me identify my purpose in life.
There’s Light At The End Of The Tunnel
We find out the most about ourselves during the days which are the darkest. There’s opportunity to take full ownership of your life, to evaluate what went wrong and what’s required to fix it.
Those days I sat at home, wondering where my next paycheck would come from, I was actually getting strong to prepare myself for the future. During those humbling moments, like doing temp work all over again, I was learning how to truly cope with adversity.
There’s a pretty cool view of Times Square at my present job. Every now and then I’ll sit by a window and just let my thoughts go wherever they need to go. My days are long but I make sure to use those five to ten minutes for me so that I don’t miss all that heavenly glory.
This crazy world can run laps around us if we’re not careful. It doesn’t hurt to take a few minutes to look around and just breathe. You may realize during those few minutes of pause that you’re stronger than you think.