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Inspiration: You Are More Than A Number

Inspiration: You Are More Than A Number

Numbers are everywhere.

Whether it be two thick red streaks on an exam, a couple of digits on a LED screen, or on a hefty paycheck. They are practical, concrete, and usually reliable. However, what happens when you start to define yourself by them; from physique to income, or from academic grades to timed records? Your inspiration plummets, leaving you in an endless loophole of self-doubt and critique. It may not seem like it, but it is actually true. You are more than a number; more than a mere piece of data.

The Truth

The power of numbers can only affect you as much as you allow it to. Truth is: numbers hold limited meaning, even though one may wonder, “How will I get into my first-choice school now?”, “When am I ever going to be able to stop swimming in debt?”, or even, “Why can’t I ever be as talented as so-and-so?” Take a moment and really step outside of the box with that number clearly labelled upon it. Venture outside of it, and walk around it. You cannot destroy it, but you can acknowledge it.

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If we remain in that box for too long, we miss out on all of the opportunities around us that are floating, just waiting to be explored.

Personal Excerpt

I’ve been through a lot of pressure (external and self-driven) to excel in practically everything: school, relationships, personal reputation. You name it, I’ve probably considered it. Ambitious and hardworking at heart, my type A personality is always on top of the game. I’ll be the first one to do a presentation, organize an event for friends, or respond to emails. I’m constantly living in the future, with a to-do list, and on top of that: more numbers! However, every little errand always felt rushed and hurried, and I found myself saying, “I’m too busy” to many of the activities I used to enjoy.

An example of myself putting numbers first is this simple thought: “If I receive x% on my final grade, I am competent.” The thought itself is superficial, but it seemed perfectly logical at the time. Throughout the years, I’ve learned that striving for contentment rather than perfection leads to a healthier mindset, and in return keeps your sanity in check. Happiness is a choice, and change is inevitable. If we build our foundation of happiness solely out of numbers, we find that it crumbles down time after time.

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Some Inspiration

Everyone hits a point in their life when the numbers do not add up and everything appears to spiral out of control.

The brain begins to store mumbo jumbo. Stress snacks upon your energy, while depression enjoys a feast at your sanity. Like the common flu, this tension can be transferred from others unto yourself. The key is to remember where you stand on the issue. You are not incapable. You are never a failure. As Abraham Lincoln once said,

“I walk slowly, but I never walk backward.”

Just keep moving forward. Remember, this too, shall pass. Think broad, not narrow. If we learn, merely for the sake of obtaining numbers to validate our success, satisfaction will seldom follow. So, think positive, but keep it realistic. Remember, you are the only person who can control your happiness.

Next Steps

Take a moment to really reflect. When was the last time you wrote in your journal? When was the last time you picked up a good book and got lost in it, taken a stroll in the park without discussing anything work-related, or participated in a board game Wednesday? Buzzing with infinite possibilities, like inspiration from literature, famous influencers, and nature, can really give life a pick-up call.

Numbers are not our enemy, but if we allow them to take over our confidence, they will rob us from our true potential.

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Numbers are everywhere… and we are far greater than them.

Featured photo credit: New Evolution Designs via newevolutiondesigns.com

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Lily Yuan

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Last Updated on June 26, 2020

10 Things To Remember When Everything Goes Wrong

10 Things To Remember When Everything Goes Wrong

Problems and heartaches in life are inevitable. However, there are some things to remember when you’re right in the thick of it that can help you get through it. When everything seems to be going wrong, practice telling yourself these things.

1. This Too Shall Pass

Sometimes life’s rough patches feel like they’re going to last forever. Whether you’re dealing with work-related issues, family problems, or stressful situations, very few problems last for a lifetime. So remind yourself, that things won’t be this bad forever.

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2. Some Things are Going Right

When things are going wrong, it’s hard to recognize what is going right. It’s easy to screen out the good things and only focus on the bad things. Remind yourself that some things are going right. Purposely look for the positive, even if it is something very small.

3. I Have Some Control

One of the most most important things to remember is that you have some control of the situation. Even if you aren’t in complete control of the situation, one thing you can always control is your attitude and reaction. Focus on managing what is within your control.

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4. I Can Ask for Help

Asking for help can be hard sometimes. However, it’s one of the best ways to deal with tough situations. Tell people what you need specifically if they offer to help. Don’t be afraid to call on friends and family and ask them for help, whether you need financial assistance, emotional support, or practical help.

5. Much of This Won’t Matter in a Few Years

Most of the problems we worry about today won’t actually matter five years from now. Remind yourself that whatever is going wrong now is only a small percentage of your actual life. Even if you’re dealing with a major problem, like a loved one’s illness, remember that a lot of good things are likely to happen in the course of a year or two as well.

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6. I Can Handle This

A lack of confidence in handling tough times can add to stress. One of the best things to remember is that you can handle tough situations. Even though you might feel angry, hurt, disappointed, or sad, it won’t kill you. You can get through it.

7. Something Good Will Come Out of This

No matter how bad a situation is, it’s almost certain that something good will come out of it. At the very least, it’s likely that you will learn a life lesson. Perhaps you learn not to repeat the same mistake in the future or maybe you move on from a bad situation and find something better. Look for the one good thing that can result when bad things happen.

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8. I Can Accept What’s Out of my Control

There are many things that aren’t within your control. You can’t change the past, another person’s behavior, or a loved one’s health issues. Don’t waste time trying to force others to change or trying to make things be different if it isn’t within your control. Investing time and energy into trying to things you can’t will cause you to feel helpless and exhausted. Acceptance is one of the best way to establish resilience.

9. I Have Overcome Past Difficulties

One of the things to remember when you’re facing difficulties, is that you’ve handled problems in the past. Don’t overlook past difficulties that you’ve dealt with successfully. Remind yourself of all the past problems you’ve overcome and you’ll gain confidence in dealing with the current issues.

10. I Need to Take Care of Myself

When everything seems to be going wrong, take care of yourself. Get plenty of rest, get some exercise, eat healthy, and spend some time doing leisure activities. When you’re taking better care of yourself you’ll be better equipped to deal with your problems.

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Featured photo credit: NeONBRAND via unsplash.com

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