Day 178 (A Hundred & Seventy-Eight) of 365 days
One of the very first lessons we learn as children are that life isn’t always fair. And yet, most of us cling to the belief that people generally get what they deserve. This belief influences our expectations and can cause us to view the world as a series of transactions: Put a dollar in the machine, you should get a soda. Work hard, you should get a promotion. Treat others with kindness, you should get the same in return.
These expectations aren’t necessarily unreasonable—but they often go unmet. Sometimes, you put a dollar in the machine…and it jams. You work hard…and the promotion goes to someone else. You’re kind to others…and you still have to put up with the jerk down the hall.
When there’s a gap between what is and what we believe should be, we tend to get angry: “I don’t deserve this!” But dwelling on unfairness doesn’t make life fairer—it does, however, make it difficult to think rationally and keeps us focused on problems instead of solutions. We don’t always get to choose what happens to us, but we do get to choose how we react.
When you’re busting your hump, trying to live a life you can be proud of and yet, junk continues to be thrown at you, how do you handle it? How do you handle being down and out when you see your friends seemingly getting everything they’ve ever wanted? I understand this feeling completely. I’ve been there.
I’ve learned some incredible lessons on this journey of self-pity. The biggest one is that when I’m starting to feel that life isn’t fair, it means I’m focusing on the few challenges I have in my life rather than all the incredible blessings I have! It means it’s time for a change in perspective!
How about you? Do you need a change in perspective?
Yes, some people get to travel more than you do. Some people get to drop as much money as they want on a fun shopping trip. Some people don’t have the financial responsibilities that you do. Some people aren’t living with a chronic illness. Some people just seem to have everything. The keyword here, my friend, is “seem!” We truly have no idea what’s going on in someone else’s life. Looking from the outside, it looks like they have it all, but the reality is maybe they do and maybe they don’t.
Life isn't fair, it's just fairer than death, that's all!