‘You can’t change the wind but you can adapt the sails’
When life throws obstacles and troubles at you, how do you respond? Do you choose to fall into despair or panic? Or do you adapt your sails?
Life inspires me in abounding ways, from the experiences I live, the stories I hear and even the films I watch. Recently I watched ‘The Trials of Cate McCall’ with Nick Nolte and Kate Beckinsale. Towards the end, Nick Nolte tells Kate Beckinsale that the only reason she drinks is not because she lost a trial, or even her daughter, but because that is the way she chooses to deal with life.
How do you choose to deal with Life?
Do you blame the world, society or your parents for your present situation? Do you condemn yourself? Do you turn to some destructive distraction?
Take action, focus on what you desire instead, adatp the sails.
Life might seem awful at times, and your anger, resentment or feelings of abuse might be totally justified, but how you face the situation is ultimately only your responsibility. Living in a state of victimisation never pulls you out of the abyss!
In the film, Nolte says ‘You can’t change the wind, but you can adapt the sails’.
Complaining about the wind is never going to stop it blowing. Complaining about life’s unjust treatment is not going to help you resolve it.
Take action, focus on what you desire instead, adapt the sails.
Some of our own truths serve us well; we believe in kindness, love and compassion. While others limit us: ‘I can’t do this’ ‘I’m not strong enough’ ‘I don’t have any help around me’. Listen to those limiting beliefs and ask yourself ‘What do I want to feel instead?’
Learn and adopt new statements: ‘I have all the help that I need’, ‘I can figure this out’, ‘I can do this’, ‘The Universe has my back’.
When we seem weaker to some, we are in fact stronger in the face of adversity.
When you become too stubborn in your despair, victimisation or resentment, you live by it and you die by it. You are powerful and strong, but strong and unshakable in negative stubbornness will imprison you, will kill you.
In the fable ‘Le Chêne et le Roseau’ (‘The Oak and the Reed’) by the French poet Jean de la Fontaine, the oak is so proud to be standing with such power next to the reed. He believes to be far better and stronger than the reed, who seems so much weaker and helpless. Then the tempest hits, the wind blows fiercely. But the reed bends, adapts and survives. The oak, in its rigidity, is uprooted, breaks and dies.
In life, when we seem weaker to some, we are in fact stronger, much stronger in the face of adversity. Those who believe that their stubbornness in their complaining, in their ego, in their unwillingness to learn, makes them stronger, ultimately breaks them.
Adapt your sails, learn from others, surround yourself with people who will uplift you, have compassion for yourself and others, smile, feel the joy, feel your own strength in the face of adversity; honour the storms and be appreciative for who you are and what you have. And above all, love yourself enough that you want to get out of the abyss, knowing that only you can do this.