How I Discovered A New Gear (ME) Thanks To COVID-19

Photo by Vincent van Zalinge on Unsplash

These few weeks have been quite difficult for me. Being an introvert, I thought the lockdown wouldn’t be a problem for me. Usually, I don’t get bored as I always have tons of things to get done but as my compulsory stay at home became longer, I realize I was now a new version of myself.

I struggled to get things done and left more than a few things unattended. Even though I was home and physically available to my family, I was always distracted. Life became so boring that I couldn’t understand myself anymore even as my interaction with other people became affected.

On this fateful day, I decided to go for a run to clear my head. I ran till I ran out of breath and I thought I almost collapsed as I remembered a story a much older friend told me some time ago.

There was once a blind wise man who lived in a cave away from a remote village. The wise man had a solution for everyone’s problems and visitors had to cross the river just to see him. The man was more or less an oracle of the gods and he was referenced and respected as such.

The news of the blind man’s wisdom spread far and wide till two teenage friends decided to test him. “Is this blind man, really wise? Let’s trick him with a very difficult puzzle”, one asked the other before they unanimously agreed to find the blind man- to test him.

To test the blind man, one of the teenagers held a butterfly in the palm of his hands and asked the blind man to correctly judge if it was alive or dead. They had a plan, if the man said the butterfly was alive then they’d mischievously crush it dead to prove the man wrong and if he did say the butterfly was dead, well- he would be totally wrong! Their plan was sinisterly airtight.

So they asked, “Oh blind wise man, we have a butterfly in our hand, please tell us if this butterfly is alive or dead.”

The blind man was silent for a few moments before the teenagers asked again, this time with a chuckle. Understanding their true intentions, the man simply replied, “It is in your hand, you can decide to kill it or you can make it continue to live,” to the astonishment of the mischievous youths.

Like the butterfly, our life is what we make of it. We either make it live or squash it death with the squeeze of our palms. Either way, our life is what we make of it. This mindset changed my perspective the moment I realized the lesson in the story.

I realized that it doesn’t matter the situation I find myself in, I remain the architect of what becomes of me. I draw my own lines and build my own bridges.

You must take personal responsibility. You cannot change the circumstances, the seasons, or the wind, but you can change yourself — Jim Rohn

My deep reflections made me realize what a wonderful life I live! I am blessed beyond measure and I am grateful. Now, do I want to destroy this life? I asked myself.

Instinctively, every part of my being started working together to figure how to get to my productive best and get out of the dark depressing loop that seemed to have taken over. I chose to search for the high performing, effective and happy me so I can continue to enjoy the fruits of this wonderful life I’ve been given.

One of my most significant actions was to ring up 3 of my close friends to talk about how I was feeling and lay my mind bare. I was reminded of how I’d scaled through seemingly worse challenges and how my goals and plans fit into the bigger picture. I was reminded and inspired by words I’d repeated over the years to achieve a new level of self-discovery. I always asked myself, “whatever it is, will it really matter in a year from now?”

In life, we sometimes lose focus on the most important things and fail to make sense of the things happening around us. Sometimes, we lose control of our senses and nothing seems to go our way. During these times it's pretty easy to be frustrated as we navigate how to get out of the gloomy loop.

Life happens and how we respond to it determines what becomes of us eventually. Neither our circumstances nor other people are responsible for what happens to us because a person is not judged correctly by circumstances but by the attitude and reaction to the situation.

Find your purpose and make daily confessions of who you want to become. Make your confessions every morning and night till it becomes a part of you. The universe is known to conspire to actually give to those who believe what they believe.

“Definiteness of purpose is the starting point of all achievement.” ―W. Clement Stone

Remember, the friends you keep will be influential to your growth. Keeping friends is important and necessary as nobody can achieve anything worthy of note in isolation. Your circle of friends is your compass to growth.

Beyond interacting with people, your circle of friends determines how fast and far you can go in life. While its quite rare to see friends who are devoid of judgement and are always there when you need them, it is very important to keep such friends close when we do have them. Good friends challenge you to continuously be a better version of yourself. Keep them close when you find them, you will need them at different point of your life especially in times like this. After all, a friend in need is a friend indeed!

Any direction usually seems to be the right direction if you haven’t figured out or defined your path in life. I would recommend this book; Find your Why by Simon Sinek to help you discover your purpose. There is a need to constantly remind ourselves what our true purpose is, in this light, everything else becomes secondary. In the end, our purpose is what keeps us going in the right direction.

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