Stop waiting for ‘ready mades’!
“If you wait for perfect conditions, you will never get anything done”- Ecclesiastes 11:4
Dalai Lama once said, “Happiness is not something ready-made. It comes from your own actions.” God will never give you what is ready-made! Wesley Snipes once wrote on his twitter handle: ‘Some people pray for cake but when the Almighty gives them eggs, oil, butter, batter, a pan and an oven, they get frustrated and leave the kitchen!’
I remember when I wanted to celebrate my birthday at ten, my mother took me out to a boutique to get one of the most memorable outfit that I still keep as a souvenir. One thing that amazes me so much was that the outfit was perfectly fit to my size specifications. I grew up with this unreal mentality that life will always be like this: I long for a ready-made wife, a ready-made career, a ready-made everything! It took me many years to realize that life wasn’t a boutique where you can find ready-made outfits. An experience that cost me a lot in friendship, relationships and career path.All that you need has been given, the challenge is just that they might not be in the form that you need it. There are many nations of the world that are going through water scarcity not because they lack water, but because the water is in a form that they’ve not converted-as icebergs. Ice is a solid form of water that is not accessible for domestic use. The reason why there is scarcity in your life is not because you don’t have what you need, it is simply because what you need is in a form that you are too lazy to work upon.
Sam Keen said, “We come to love not by finding a perfect person, but by learning to see an imperfect person perfectly”. Some people are still unmarried today simply because they are looking for a ready-made man or woman. They long for the perfect relationship and totally oblivious of the truth that it doesn’t exist! A good relationship requires effort, hard work and dedication from both partners. The wife or husband that you want does not exist; you may need to work on the lady or man in your life presently in order to get what you want.
There is no perfect marriage, no perfect career, no perfect friendship and no perfect situations. Everything only gets better as we begin to work on them. Perfect doesn’t exist; it is what we all strive towards. There are many hidden blocks and mentalities that prevent us from enjoying what God has given us. It is pitiable to see people having right beside them what they need for a fulfilling and happy life but never recognizing it! There are many enlightened ways of enjoying the abundance in our lives (and others) and shifting away from a scarcity mindset. These are:
ABANDON UNREALISTIC EXPECTATIONS: Bill Lemley once said, “When nobody around you seems to measure up, it’s time to check your yardstick”. In order to live a productive and fulfilling life, we must progressively abandon unrealistic expectations. Unrealistic expectations are potentially damaging because they set us and others up for failure. When we relinquish our unhealthy and unrealistic expectations of others, we begin to see and appreciate their worth.
PRACTICE GRATITUDE: It is not happy people who are thankful; it is thankful people who are happy. A man that is mentally healthy believes strongly that there is always something to be thankful for. Gratitude is an essential component in living a fulfilling and abundant life, and aligning yourself to receive all the good the universe has to offer. Gratitude shifts your focus from what your life lacks to the abundance that is already present. Charles Spurgeon said, “It is not how much we have, but how much we enjoy, that makes happiness”. It is only a great fool that will not be grateful!
DON’T COMPARE: For you to enjoy a rich and fulfilling life, your desire to get better must be greater than your desire to beat others! John C. Maxwell once said, “There is nothing noble in being superior to someone else, progress is becoming superior to your previous self.’’ The easiest way to stop yourself from enjoying what you have is comparing yourself with others. If you try to hold your relationship up to the standards of others, you are always going to find yourself lacking. Theodore Roosevelt was correct in asserting that “Comparison is the thief of joy.”
PRACTICE CONTENTMENT: It is always good to pause and reflect on a critical truth that most of us normally overlook in life: “Someone else is happy with less than what you have”. Be content with what you have but never be content with where you are. Contentment is learning to enjoy what you have presently on the journey to where you are going.
APPRECIATE WHAT YOU HAVE AND NEVER TAKE THINGS FOR GRANTED: There is a common saying that says, “What you appreciate, appreciates”. So many times, we don’t know what we have until we lose it. When you take things for granted, the things you are granted, get taken. Hal Elrod said, “Love the life you have while you create the life of your dreams”.
FOCUS ON THE GOOD AND NOT THE FAULT IN OTHERS: Some people find faults in others as if there is a reward for it! Henry Ford once said, “Don’t find fault, find a remedy.” Toxic people are always looking out for faults in others. They have a keen eye for faults and are psychologically blinded to the ‘goods’ in others. We must cultivate the golden habit of looking beyond the fault in others in order to value them. We must take practical steps to see beyond the faults in others and start seeing the possibilities in them.
WORK ON YOUR PESPECTIVE: Anaïs Nin once said, “We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are.” Most times, the needed shift from a scarcity to an abundance mindset is just a change of perspective. The Holy Bible says, “Seek and ye shall find.” It is what we seek and look out for in people that we will ultimately see. What we see in people most of the times is simply a reflection of who we are or the perspective we carry. Don’t call the world dirty because you have forgotten to clean your glasses!
GIVE ROOM FOR PEOPLE’S MISTAKE: Mahatma Gandi said, “Freedom is not worth having if it does not include the freedom to make mistakes.” Mistakes are integral part of the learning system. When people make mistakes, which they will always do, we must encourage them to learn from it. In his book, “Failing Forward”, John C. Maxwell said, “God uses people who fail—’cause there aren’t any other kind around.” Mistakes though can be costly but can also be used as a springboard for evolving a better self. As long as it is not an old mistake, give people the room to make new mistakes. In the end, making mistakes is better than faking perfections.
STOP COMPLAINING: Personally, I never knew a man who was good at complaining and making excuses who was good at anything else! Someone once said, “When I lost all my complaints, I found my results.” In life, when you refuse to make complain, you make something incredible happen in your life. Always complaining is a recipe for recurring frustration and failure. In order to get the best out of people, we must stop making complaints and start making changes.
GIVE PEOPLE THE PLATFORMS TO BE THEMSELVES: The greatest gift you can ever give to others is to provide them with a platform to be themselves. Never manipulate people to live a life that you’ve designed for them. We must not force people to fit into our designs but rather provide them with a platform to stand out with their uniqueness. To get the best out of people, we must help to nurture their uniqueness.
EXPECT THE BEST FROM PEOPLE: Erickson’s Law of Expectation simply states that 85% of what you expect do happen. It is what you believe about others that will manifest. In order to see the best in others, you will have to expect the best from them.
Instead of waiting all the times for ready-mades, we should be thinking of that extra effort, attention, patience, care and love to put into that something or someone so that they could be anything and everything we’ve always wanted! There is always an extra effort to put into that “IMPERFECT” and make it “I’M PERFECT”. It is unfair to apply zero effort and expect perfect output! There is nothing that is ready-made.
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