Each of us has a unique destiny here on Earth that we have to create for ourselves. Creating this destiny however, requires guts, time, effort and ability. To add to our problems, we may not have the ability or the experience needed to succeed in the first place. Instead, we must acquire them over time. Only when we pass through the baptism of fire can we hope to succeed. At this point, life steps in to guide and help us.
The Importance of Mastering the Lessons of Life
You see, life is really a series of unique lessons that we have to master. Through the problems we face, life provides a catalyst for us to acquire the skills we need to fulfil our destinies. It helps us to change, grow and succeed. Each lesson that we master serves as a foundation and helps to prepare us for greater deeds ahead. Taken as a whole, these lessons build upon each other to improve our character, capacity and ability.
It is generally better to learn the lessons of life early. Why do I say so? Because every lesson we learn extracts a price from us. The price could come in many forms. It could be our time, effort, money, relationships etc. Such is the cost of our subsequent wisdom and experience. Here, we should bear in mind that not all lessons are equal. Some lessons tend to be more costly compared to others. To complicate matters, we have our responsibilities and obligations to consider. Therefore, we stand to lose much more if we take too long a time to learn a lesson.
Even though we have our own lessons to master, there are certain similarities involved. From my experience, it helps to bear three steps in mind when we face the lessons of life.
Mastering the Lessons of Life: The 3 Steps
1. Step Out of the Comfort Zone
Comfort zones help us to cope with the demands of life by giving us reprieve from time to time. As such, many of us would prefer the confines of our comfort zone. After all, it is safe and familiar. But because change is the only constant in this life, safety is an illusion. In fact, if we remain in our comfort zones all the time, we will not be able to adapt to change. Instead of growing, we will stagnate and perish.
Growth only comes about when we stretch our limits. The reason it will not happen in our comfort zones is that we have already adapted to it and are all that we can be. There is little room left for further growth. True growth lies beyond that little circle, it lies outside of our comfort zones. To learn the lessons of life, we have to step out of our comfort zones from time to time. Only then, will we face the challenges of life and learn to adapt as needed.
2. Find the Path to True Happiness
The purpose of life, the actions we take and the choices we make, is to create meaning to be truly happy. Every one of us deserves this happiness. But because each of us is unique, we have to strive for what makes us happy in our own way. There is however, no standard formula for meaning and true happiness in life. The right actions, choices and goals lead to happiness. The wrong ones lead us away from happiness.
The problem is that we do not automatically make the right choices about our happiness. It could be that what we choose to pursue does not lead to lasting happiness. Or it could be that we struggle against our life lessons and refuse to grow the way we should. This is understandable because change is never easy. But if you are not happy in life, then something must be wrong somewhere. Our state of true happiness is a good indicator of how well we are learning and coping with life’s lessons. At every stage of our lives, it would do us good to ask ourselves if we are truly happy. If not, what must we do?
3. Break the Cycle of Repetition
When we face a problem, make a mistake or fail, it is not the end of the world. It only means that we are not doing something right or that we lack the needed skills and qualities to resolve it. The only way forward is to focus on the solution and to find out how to overcome the problem. It might require some external or internal change. In the process of doing so, we gain experience and grow as a result. Even if we encounter the same problem again, we have the ability to deal with it.
Now ideally, we learn the lesson that life has for us and move on to the next one. But not all lessons are easy to learn. Sometimes we struggle against the lesson and the changes it brings. It might become so bad that we try to avoid the lesson altogether. But there is no getting away from life. Even if you run from the lesson, it will repeat itself in a different form and keep on doing so until you learn.
Why do repeating lessons happen? In the grander scheme of things, it is necessary. After all, each lesson is life’s way of preparing you for greater deeds ahead. If a lesson or problem keeps haunting you and repeating itself, then it is probably vital that you learn it well. If you refuse to heed the summons of destiny, the price it extracts from you will get greater and greater. You will find yourself facing this problem until you can master it and move on to the next stage. So notice the repeating problems and lessons in your life. Take action early, master the lesson and break the cycle of repetition as soon as you can.
What experiences do you have in mastering the lessons of life? How did you manage? Are there any other strategies you could mention? Do share your thoughts and comments below.