Our life lessons and experiences shape us up. It is as if the empty canvas of our existence is painted into a meaningful masterpiece with each passing day. Every experience big or small has a special standing in the overall silhouette of our reality. Though the experiences may or may not contribute tangibly to our being they mold our perceptions and responses.
Life moves fast. As young children, we often dream of growing up quickly. The rush of blood at this immature phase makes one careless of the harsh lurking realities. But what should every person know? That before we know it, we are all grown up and caught in the hool a hoop of life’s complexities and responsibilities. Amongst the fun and frolics of growing up, we overlook the life lessons we require to stay afloat the sea of life.
Let’s face it! Life is an unusual teacher. It puts us to test first and gives us some valuable life lessons later. Sometimes slowly and steadily and sometimes right in the face. We decode the essence of survival, secrets to success, and happiness with experience and age. And here I am recollecting my remuneration. Never did I realize in my college days that few years ahead in time, I will regret every time I procrastinated or missed out on a college trip. I wish I could meet my young self and give it the following 10 life lessons no one teaches you at school.
1. Cherish your mistakes:
All of us remain the lifelong students of life as every moment we combat different demons. Sometimes achieving success and sometimes falling short. But what do life lessons teach us? What do we learn the MOST from? Surely from our failures and inadequacies. How to manage the various relationships associated with us-friends, family, offspring. The key to balancing different aspects of your life- be it your job or financial foibles. The power to exercise self-control and grow into a better human being. Our mistakes teach us life lessons that we cannot learn otherwise. No matter how many books you read or researches you come across, we all have our share of bad decisions and mistakes that shape us into who we are.
These mistakes help us synthesize our principles to lay the foundation of our ethics. Just like raw gold that needs to be put into the furnace again and again to achieve its final pure form. We are tested with failure so as to remove our unnecessary misconceptions and ideals. Look at it this way! You deal with an issue applying the most appropriate approach but the results come out against your expectations. This is the most conducive time to deduce a life lesson and cherish it for all times to come. In fact, you would not need to remember it intentionally. Every time you will be faced with a similar situation, your learned life lessons will be right in front of your eyes.
2. Most important things in life-your relationships:
Can you recall the numerous times you fought with your loved ones over matters that seem insignificant in retrospective? It could have been the owner of a gadget or a difference of opinion. No wonder these are the perks of growing up. But believe me, the things and ideas that are so dear to you now will lose their charm and value sooner or later. Relationships, on the other hand, will grow stronger and healthier if looked after in the right manner.
Let’s face the fact that we cannot make it through the test of life alone. We need support guidance and strength from our near ones on every stage of life. No matter how accomplished you become, you need someone to celebrate your success. To be happy in your happiness and sad in your sadness. And the basis of building sound relationships with our loved ones is to prioritize them on everything else. Spend your precious time on them; even if you do not expect the return. Share feelings and belongings; even if they are very close to your heart. Exchange Gifts; for it is the most certain key to nurture love. The contentment hidden in sharing with loved ones is not to be found anywhere else.
Remember!! Before you know it, all of your loved ones will craft a life of their own. And if you have not invested carefully at the right time in the relationships, then be prepared for loneliness and regret. So next time you are expected at a family gathering, try to make it despite a tight schedule. Share the latest Blu-ray you purchased with your friend and strengthen the bond forever.
3. Learn a skill along with education:
Life is unpredictable, to say the least. In order to keep our heads above the water level, we need some kind of formal or informal education. Something that will enable us to meet our financial needs and cater to our family and dependents. But life is not always fair. Ups and downs are a part of life. And when life takes a turn for the worse, we need to have something to fall back on.
But after investing your energy, finances and so many years of your life in acquiring education, what else should I possibly learn?
There is more than one answer to this question. But to put it simply, one must learn a skill that can help you float through reasonably in the worst-case scenario. An ability that is innate in you. Something you can polish now and utilize in order to skim through a difficult phase of your life towards greener pastures.
Have a plan B in mind
The point being made is that have a plan B in mind in case your master plan fails. We all have some skills that we are inherently good at. Fill the empty slots of time with polishing that skill. Something that can aid you financially in life in case of a fiasco. Baking, photography, crafting, social media marketing, writing and whatnot. The possibilities are endless if you are willing to invest time in learning. When you diversify your competencies and improve the existing ones, you can expect to stabilize your rocking boat with ease. I learned such useful life lessons in the most difficult situation of my life.
I remember the devastation I faced on losing my job as a senior foreign language instructor at a high school due to the COVID pandemic. But what saved me financially was the skill of creative writing that I had learned and perfected while I was a student. Having observed my natural aptitude toward writing, I was lucky to have been guided in the right direction. God has mercy on my teacher who encouraged me to enroll in this short course during my high school summer break.
4. Never make a decision in anger:
When in a state of anger, remember this one rule forever! Try to stay quiet and most importantly DO NOT MAKE A DECISION WHEN ANGRY. This is one of the life lessons that has never let me down.
It is but natural for us humans to lose our calm no matter how cool minded we are. The immediacy of your emotions and the rush of blood will pump you to say or do unnecessary things. Things whose consequences you are overlooking due to anger. The downside of losing a temper is that it clouds your conscious mind and momentarily cripples your ability to decide what is in your best interest. Always allow yourself a period of time to calm down and think and rethink the consequences of your responsive retaliation. This approach is important because otherwise, you will have to either regret making an angry decision or face one form of loss or the other.it could be an emotional setback or the loss of a good reputation or even personal relationships.
This is the biggest lesson life taught me after making and regretting steps taken in anger. I am a true believer that I can manipulate my silence to mean a lot of things in my interest but cannot do the same for my words and actions.
5. Make conscious lifestyle choices:
When we are young, we tend to ignore adopting a healthy lifestyle. Sedentary routine, not eating well-balanced food, irregular sleeping patterns are the unconscious choices we make. But Keats has rightly likened youth to, la belle dame sans merci, – a lady without mercy. You can get away with a bad lifestyle in the prime of life. But the effects that will start to exhibit as soon as you exit the threshold of youth will be difficult to get the hang of. Before we realize we are at the stage of life where forming habits seems difficult or even impossible. We realize that our physical being is not as strong as we considered it to be when our joints start squeaking and our side table drawers appear like small medicine shops. Remember the life lessons no one teaches you at school.
Make hey while the sun shines.
The secret to maintaining a healthy lifestyle is to convince yourself in your youthful years to consciously adopt lasting healthy habits. It is difficult but possible. Start with small steps.
- Dedicate small chunks of time for exercise, meditation, or any other form of physical activity. Once a small target is achieved, aim for a bigger objective.
- Avoid those unhealthy foods as they will only add unnecessary pounds and layers of fats.
- Exercise and healthy food are not just for those aiming to lose or maintain weight. These are essential to staying fit and are important for anyone and everyone regardless of their age and physical condition.
Whereas this is an absolute truth that we can halt the aging process but by choosing wisely our lifestyle stratagem in good young days, we can surely age serenely.
Having dealt very closely with people with health problems, I have no doubt in the saying, there really is no wealth like health. If you are not healthy then no matter how blessed u are in every other aspect of life, u cannot live life to fullest. Imagine a millionaire facing a serious health problem. Wouldn’t he give away everything to be fit again? He surely will but even that will not restore his wellness.
Keep in mind my golden words. If you sow the right seeds in the spring of your youth only then will you be able to reap the fruits in autumn of your life? This can be extrapolated to all facets of our life and not just health choices. Remember this precious advice and pass it on because no one teaches you these life lessons at school.
6. Live in the present don’t just skim through life
Live in the present considering it as the best time of your life even if u are going through a rough patch. If u are having a hard time coping up at the workplace or the daily chores of life seem too much to deal with. Hang in there. You will look back on this time and remember it longingly. The life lessons every child and adult should learn is that time once past can never be turned back. This alone should be reason enough for us to live every moment as if it were our last.
People often fail to forgive themselves and others in life. Such a trait is most counter-productive in life. Try to live in the present moment and not dwell on the bitterness of the past for it is long gone. All through our life, we are chasing after one goal or the next. But what we forget in this journey is that it is never about the destination. It is about making the most out of our journey. Living a worthwhile life, enjoying every day, and making every moment count. By attaching our contentment to future goals we overlook what the present had to offer us in terms of happiness.
My life lessons teach me to live every day as if it was a bonus for me. Cherish the small things that come our way. The laughter of our loved ones, meaningless chatter of your little ones, a beautiful rainy day and so much more which might seem insignificant right now. For if you overlook the present now you will regret it once you look back in time.
7. A good life lesson- Consistency counts:
I learned the most inspirational life lesson being a student of a long-distance education system. I learned that it is the consistency that counts in success more than anything else. Even more than a high level of IQ or intelligence. Being steady and committed to the achievement of my goal is what enabled me to complete my Doctorate despite countless odds. A family to look after, an ailing mother to tend to and a set of twins to tackle. Many times I lost my determination to continue and more often my will power crumbled under the weight of my responsibilities. Had it not been for the gratification of the fire that burnt inside me and lit my way, I could easily have given up.
In fact, many people lose the motivation to continue after a setback or adversity. What should every person know in such a scenario is that it is up to us to carve our life and carve it as well as we want. No one in the world has achieved laurels without working hard consistently. Take the example of any famous personality be it Hellen Keller, J.K Rowling or Abraham Lincoln, and countless more. All had to strive long and hard to earn a name in history. Had it not been for the perseverance of the Wright Brothers, the aviation industry might not have developed like now. Therefore never consider that success and happiness will come to you if you give up on your dream. The saying of Winston S. Churchill is most relevant here, “Success is not final; failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.”
8. Watch your company:
I am a strong believer in the famous words of the motivational speaker Jim John. He said, “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” This is true at all stages of life, childhood, adolescence and adulthood.
Effects of the company in childhood
The science of social networks suggests that the personality of children is most influenced by their parents and siblings. Similarly, since adolescent children are closer to their peers than family members therefore they become a product of the expectations of their friends. The theories of Sigmund Freud-the the world-renowned psychoanalyst also support these notions.
Grownups and science of keeping the right company
As grown-ups, we tend to put less and less importance on who we are spending time with. We tend to feel content with those who fall automatically into our social circle. Some good life lessons I learned on the journey of my life taught me a secret. That is to surround me with people who will add to my personality in one way or the other. Whether or not we feel the effects of surrounding our self with motivating, positive and generous people, their influence cannot be denied. Slowly and gradually the vibes of positivity get absorbed into our being and alter our personality. As grown-ups, we are more quickly able to identify and adopt positive personality traits. Recall a time when you were highly moved by the constructive attitude of a friend and thought about rectifying -or may be inculcating- the same in yourself.
This is because positive and focused individuals around you will definitely add to your proactive-ness. An ambitious and visionary neighbor can undoubtedly add to our personality by inspiring us to be like them. Similarly, a generous person will be impacting your disposition and enabling you to be compassionate in the long run. Want to know a surprising fact? Even a positive vibe such as a compliment or a smile can change negative emotions into optimistic ones, change the mood mechanism and help be a better person.
The same is true for negative people. Such people need to be dealt with thoughtfully and with a basic level of respect. But one needs to maintain a safe distance with these personalities because just like positive traits, negative ones can also be easily and discreetly absorbed.
So stick to these life lessons and watch your company all the time.
9. Be the change you want in the world
We often waste our energy on complaining about how things around us are not hoed they should be. Especially in these trying times of the pandemic COVID 19, we are grumpy about the irresponsible behavior of the people. How they are not staying home, how everyone is asking for a lift in the lockdown, and people on roads not following the SOPs in place. But then how much are we ourselves contributing to the improvement of this situation. When the markets open, we are the firsts to visit. We occasionally meet our friends and coworkers and forget social distance.
What do life lessons teach us in this case
The reason for citing this example is that instead of complaining about something, we as responsible beings should direct our energy in setting things right. An ideal behavior in this particular case will be to not only adhere to the safety rules but at least ensure the adherence to them in our own household. Taking one step forward, we could help others in our neighborhood understand the pros and cons of appropriate actions. The ripples of your footsteps will generate waves of awareness beyond imagination.
This philosophy is applicable in all fields of life be it your community, workplace family, or even interpersonal relations. If you sense bitterness in any of your relationships, try adding some sweetness of gratitude, complement, and patience. Instead of dwelling on the downside and expecting time to set things right, take action, and do whatever is in your capacity-no matter how small or big. When you react proactively to a situation, you set the path for others to follow.
And believe me! With small steps in the right direction, you will most certainly be able to bring about the change you desire. Your individual journey will not only attract others but will most certainly inspire people in your company. Be the first drop of rain and then see the magic of rainfall from a different perspective.
10. Respect and be respected
We deal with a large number of people on a daily basis. Being a civilized person, it is important to maintain a basic level of respect for everyone. However, there are notions of propriety which need to be considered while interacting with people depending upon their age stature position, etc.
One of the key life lessons I learned and reinforced over and over again is respect and be respected. For respect is such a reciprocating phenomenon, that the more you give the more you will receive. Occasionally there may be negatively toxic people who will not pay you in the same coin. Such people are rare in my opinion and should be dealt with tactfully. (That’s a point of discussion for another time).
Being respectful means to maintain a certain decorum in all our dealings with others. Listening to their point of view, and having regard for their feelings, rights, and wishes. This noble sentiment has some two-way benefits
- It improves our value in the eyes of others
- It automatically makes people in our vicinity cautiously respectful about their behavior with us.
- The impressionable minds around a respectful person can judge the consequences of such an attitude and eventually adopt it.
- I believe that if we can learn to be respectful in all our agreements and disagreements we can unlock the key to a civilized community.
What is the meaning of life lessons? It means that we will learn most of our lessons from rising, falling, failing, and succeeding. We all live only once and this life is too short to learn all the life lessons our self. It is useful, therefore, to take advantage of the experiences of other people to spend an optimally worthwhile and successful life. It is one of the keys to success in life.