Sunday, 17 July 2016

Misery is optional.

I have learnt that no matter how bad things are, you can always make things worse. If pain is inevitable, then misery is optional. Pain like suffering comes unbidden. But they often do not stay for long. Once the bad news is announced, or the bad event comes, they like messengers take their leave. They bid you farewell. They have done their part. Their work is complete. The rest is up to you. In their departure, what is often left behind is either misery or hope, helplessness or resilience, resignation or resolution.

I believe a time is given for mourning. A time for reflection. A time for grieve. After that, it's time for recovery. You can either make it better or make it worse. You can ruminate until it hurts. You can sleep all day and refuse to move a muscle. You can mope and sulk to attract sympathy and pity. You can play the victim and soak up the attention. You can make it worse by refusing to make it better. Your choice counts. Your response is invaluable. Your resolve matters.

When you have hit rock bottom, it is often said that the only way to go is up. But many are forgetting that rock bottom is an insidious place of false comfort too. Many will seek solace in staying down instead of drawing hope in standing up. To many, wallowing in the "rock bottom" is a form of negative rejuvenation where hopelessness and helplessness take turn to demoralize the victim further in a vicious cycle of restless desolation.

So, if the mother of invention is necessity, then the mother of encouragement is proactivity. We take control of the messiness in our life and set things right once again. It is a tough undertaking no doubt but every step forward is nevertheless a step that deeply empowers. What makes the crucial difference is a choice invested to change our life for the better. The changes may be small, and even seemingly insignificant, but the circumstantial forces rallied around that one act of proactivity contain the power to break down many walls that conspire to cage us in.

Let me end with the observation of Viktor Frankl, a survivor of the Nazi occupation, in his bestseller Man's Search for Meaning, "We who lived in concentration camps can remember the men who walked through the huts comforting others, giving away their last piece of bread. They may have been few in numbers, but they offer sufficient proof that everything can be taken from man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms - to choose one's attitude in any given set of circumstances - to choose one's own way."

So, times may indeed be bad, no sweat. You are there to make it better. Cheerz.

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