We have been given that marvelous gift to do with as we choose. It is life itself that we should embrace. It is ours to live. Too often, we lose sight of this miracle called life. We take it for granted. We abuse it. We waste it. We criticize it for its difficulty. We believe we didn’t get our fair share. We fault our opportunities and condemn our lack of good fortune. We feel that the best of what life has to offer rarely comes to us. But with all this blame and criticism of our life, we rarely believe it is our fault. We expect happiness to come our way, and if it doesn’t, then the rest of the world is whom we indict for its unfairness. Yet, we alone create the good fortune that we will receive. We cannot wait for our ship to come in. We must swim out to it. We should not waste another moment agonizing over how unfair life can be; rather we should rejoice that it even exists.
The following quote from Max Ehrmann is probably the best self-help piece ever written. If we all lived our lives with the following words in mind, we would have no need for any other advice:
Go placidly amid the noise and the haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence. As far as possible, without surrender, be on good terms with all persons. Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even to the dull and ignorant; they too have their story. Avoid loud and aggressive persons; they are vexations to the spirit. If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain or bitter, for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself. Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time. Exercise caution in your business affairs for the world is full of trickery. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals, and everywhere life is full of heroism. Be yourself. Especially do not feign affection. Nor be cynical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment, it is as perennial as the grass. Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth. Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings. Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness. Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should. Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be. And whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life, keep peace in your soul. With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.
Do you feel you are running through life like Forrest Gump? Simply running without knowing why you are running or to where you are running? And running in a rat race that never seems to have a finish line? Feeling like you are running on empty most of the day?
There is a simple reason for that: You are more preoccupied with doing life than living life. You are consumed with the Busyness of life rather than the Purpose of it. Maybe today would be a good time to stop focusing on Human Doing and instead focus on Human Being.