When your heart is squashed and your eyesight is dimming and everyone around you is losing their ground, I hope you can dig in deep and remember these universal truths about life.
1. There is far more good in this world than bad.
Yes, heartache is excruciating, and the epidemics spread fast. There’s unnerving poverty in your neighborhood and children dying of cancer. At times, you feel like justice is naught.
But there’s also overbearing canyons, mystical mountains, and beautiful beaches. Have you heard the roar of a fighter? The fight of a determined survivor? The love surrounding a dying patient? People coming together when a natural disaster hits? Businesses pivoting from extreme economic conditions?
For every crude crook on earth, there are many social workers, doctors, volunteers, teachers, and firemen.
2. You can always bet on yourself to carry you through anything.
You have survived all your catastrophes 100% so far, haven’t you? You may have a broken heart and a bruised ego, but you are a very fine being today.
Vulnerability frees you from your ego and lets you connect with like-minded people. You find your voice and learn that asking for help is a means of connecting with others, of trusting the other.
No matter what happens, know that you will find a way. You will rise above it all and hold your head up high, no matter how many people throw tantrums at you. If there’s one person you can bet on to keep yourself afloat, let that be you. Always you.
3. Pure joy can be found in the mundane if you look hard enough.
Can you find joy in a blooming flower? A quiet night of pedestrian stars? A cup of steaming hot chocolate? A child who looks at you in awe. Thanking someone for their kind words and being thanked for holding the door open for the person behind you.
There are tiny moments of joy scattered around in the necklace of moments that we call a day. Some days, you must look harder for these pearls, while on other days, the pearls are on an abundant stroll.
Once an Uber driver told me how bad moments tend to pop up during his day. But that doesn’t mean that he had a bad day as there were lots of joyous moments too.
4. You are magnificent just as you are. I promise.
Even though your stomach is not flat, you can’t sing a note, and you’ve done some sketchy things in high school, you are still a work of art. A marvelous creation tuned to the beat of the universe.
The tree that’s shorter than the rest does not shy away from bearing fruits that rightfully belong to it. It stands strong and absorbs all the love that the sun showers upon us.
All your imperfections somehow make you perfect and connect you to the heart of the earth.
You have goals and places to get to tomorrow. But your magnificence is already with you. It has always been a part of you. It will always be your core element.
5. You are never truly alone in this tribal world.
Yes, sometimes the world seems hopeless and lonely. Even when you’re in a house full of family or friends.
But do you know how many loved one are waiting for you to open up to them? How many strangers are hoping for someone just like you?
Although we are alone in our own coops, there are so many of us in pens and pounds around the world. All lonely, all disconnected. And with this commonality, we are not truly alone. We can find others who are in similar dilemmas if only we look outside of our compounds and reach out.
6. Giving it your all doesn’t guarantee anything. But this is the best way to live.
The world doesn’t owe you anything. You create your own path by what you do and how you grow. And the only way to live is to give it your all.
If you are taking an exam, give it your best shot by studying every book you can. If you have married the love of your life, give them your everything by lighting up their soul. If you want to get into freelance writing, hustle like there’s no tomorrow.
When you’re sweeping the floors, do it with all your might and when you cook a meal, pour all your love into that gravy.
When you live with all your heart, the world will give you what you want.
7. Forgiving is healthy for everyone involved, mostly for you.
Holding onto grudges does no one favors. No, don’t let them off the hook. But understand their reasons and be compassionate while knowing that what they did cannot be justified.
But let them go so you can move onto peaceful pastures. Not forgiving someone hurts you more than it hurts them, because in many cases, they don’t even acknowledge or accept that they hurt you. Every perpetrator is skilled in avoiding their guilt.
Forgive all without forgetting. If someone needs to be removed from your life, do it with love and compassion while maintaining non-negotiable boundaries for your protection.
8. There is no greater gift to yourself than a positive mindset.
You can toil away in the kitchen cursing the garlic peels or think of a better way to peel garlic. You can disengage and continue to sacrifice your time to a corporate job or you can take initiative to plan your way out.
Have you heard of that painter in prison? The one who chooses to ignore the prison bars and paint the trees outside.
For anything you do, doing it with a positive attitude is the best option for an optimal life.
9. A majestic love awaits you if you remain open and accepting.
I don’t mean romantic love here. Majestic love can be a kid, a friend, a book, a calling, nature—anything, really.
You will fall hard for someone or something that won’t hurt you. This is the love that makes you drool, and the butterflies are endless in your gut.
But you have to be open to receive this. You have to love yourself enough, so you don’t resort to licking love off of sharp edges.
You have to believe that this love is on its way to you and that it will fulfill you until the end.
10. All your struggles, trauma, and misgivings will be worth it in the end.
On your last days on earth, you will know that this life was worth it. All the drama, all the tears, and all the giggles.
Every moment led you to your most wonderful life. It was all part of the grand plan.
Nothing can beat what you have here on earth. You have the will to make something out of all your days. You have the resources to reverse any adversity you’re faced with.
As American actress Mae West said, “I never said it would be easy. I only said it would be worth it.”