Advertising
Advertising

Life Is Not Supposed To Be Fair, We’re Supposed to Learn To Live With It

Life Is Not Supposed To Be Fair, We’re Supposed to Learn To Live With It

It is uncommon to hear someone say, “I invested $1 million in stocks yesterday. There is no way I wouldn’t earn money.” This is easily understood – because no amount of money invested would guarantee you a return.

Yet, it seems like we believe that simply because we invested in the people and work in our lives, we should be compensated accordingly.

If we pulled three all-nighters in a row for a project, it must succeed. If we exhaust ourselves every day to make sure our kids’ studies and homework are done perfectly, they have to get a good score at school. If we went through all those difficulties and obstacles during a relationship, surely our marriage would be an easy, peaceful ordeal.

But reality doesn’t deal its cards according to fairness. A sudden earthquake could destroy the fields and crops farmers spent a whole season caring for. A stroke of luck could allow a gambler to win a million dollars without working for it.

Advertising

The most unimaginable things happen to the most ordinary people.

Sometimes we win. Sometimes we learn. That’s the way of life.

Like stars, life sparkles, shines and smiles. It won’t do, however, if we forget that they also flicker, darken, and hide in times. Life has its ups and downs. Sometimes we win. Sometimes we learn. Yet it is this uncertainty that gives us the urge to try harder, run faster, and jump higher. We may not always win. But we won’t always fail either. We just have to make sure every time we trip, we would push ourselves up – our knees may be bloody, our elbows may be bruised, but we will leap over whatever it is that put us down before.

Aspire to be excellent, not successful.

“Don’t run behind success. Follow behind excellence, success will come behind you.”

– Rancho, 3 Idiots.

We set our goals at getting promotions at work, making our children the best students, or getting the highest grades. It’s so often that we forget in chasing after success, we lost sight of what is important. Work is about writing great articles that people enjoy reading, teaching and transferring knowledge to students, or designing beautiful residences for people to live in. Success is not, and should not be your destination. It should merely be something you pick up along the way.

Work hard and step forward – even if they are just baby steps.

“If you don’t go after what you want, you’ll never have it. If you don’t ask, the answer is always no. If you don’t step forward, you’re always in the same place.”

– Nora Roberts

We may work extremely hard for something we wanted. Unfortunately, it isn’t just about how hard we worked. There are factors that we can’t control in the ultimate scheme of things.

Advertising

Does that mean we should just give up?

No. No. It simply means we must dedicate 120% of our efforts towards the things we want, so when the opportunity comes, we are going to hold it as tight as we can and let it carry us towards success. Be not afraid of stumbling and embrace challenges as they come, because if you don’t work hard for it, if you don’t try to go forward, you will never have it.

Failures in life don’t define us.

Life may not be fair. There will be many times when you would be frustrated and tired, grief-stricken and furious. And that is completely normal. Just don’t let these times define you.

You are better than that.

Advertising

We are better than that.

Shine like the stars and be remembered for all your beauty and glory.

Featured photo credit: Picjumbo via picjumbo.com

More by this author

Eamon Suen

Student, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology

Life Is Not Supposed To Be Fair, We’re Supposed to Learn To Live With It If You Want To Be Successful, You May Need To Cut Off Something From Life The Earlier You Understand These Truths Of Happiness The Better Your New Habits Will Stick With These 5 Killer Strategies Accept Where You Are And Happiness Is At Your Fingertips

Trending in Communication

1The Gentle Art of Saying No 217 Ted Talks for Kids to Inspire Little Minds to Do Big Things 310 Toxic Persons You Should Just Get Rid Of 4Striving Towards Secure Attachment: How to Restructure Your Thoughts 5Being Self Aware Is the Key to Success: How to Boost Self Awareness

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising

The Gentle Art of Saying No

The Gentle Art of Saying No

No!

It’s a simple fact that you can never be productive if you take on too many commitments — you simply spread yourself too thin and will not be able to get anything done, at least not well or on time.

Advertising

But requests for your time are coming in all the time — through phone, email, IM or in person. To stay productive, and minimize stress, you have to learn the Gentle Art of Saying No — an art that many people have problems with.

Advertising

What’s so hard about saying no? Well, to start with, it can hurt, anger or disappoint the person you’re saying “no” to, and that’s not usually a fun task. Second, if you hope to work with that person in the future, you’ll want to continue to have a good relationship with that person, and saying “no” in the wrong way can jeopardize that.

Advertising

But it doesn’t have to be difficult or hard on your relationship. Here are the Top 10 tips for learning the Gentle Art of Saying No:

  1. Value your time. Know your commitments, and how valuable your precious time is. Then, when someone asks you to dedicate some of your time to a new commitment, you’ll know that you simply cannot do it. And tell them that: “I just can’t right now … my plate is overloaded as it is.”
  2. Know your priorities. Even if you do have some extra time (which for many of us is rare), is this new commitment really the way you want to spend that time? For myself, I know that more commitments means less time with my wife and kids, who are more important to me than anything.
  3. Practice saying no. Practice makes perfect. Saying “no” as often as you can is a great way to get better at it and more comfortable with saying the word. And sometimes, repeating the word is the only way to get a message through to extremely persistent people. When they keep insisting, just keep saying no. Eventually, they’ll get the message.
  4. Don’t apologize. A common way to start out is “I’m sorry but …” as people think that it sounds more polite. While politeness is important, apologizing just makes it sound weaker. You need to be firm, and unapologetic about guarding your time.
  5. Stop being nice. Again, it’s important to be polite, but being nice by saying yes all the time only hurts you. When you make it easy for people to grab your time (or money), they will continue to do it. But if you erect a wall, they will look for easier targets. Show them that your time is well guarded by being firm and turning down as many requests (that are not on your top priority list) as possible.
  6. Say no to your boss. Sometimes we feel that we have to say yes to our boss — they’re our boss, right? And if we say “no” then we look like we can’t handle the work — at least, that’s the common reasoning. But in fact, it’s the opposite — explain to your boss that by taking on too many commitments, you are weakening your productivity and jeopardizing your existing commitments. If your boss insists that you take on the project, go over your project or task list and ask him/her to re-prioritize, explaining that there’s only so much you can take on at one time.
  7. Pre-empting. It’s often much easier to pre-empt requests than to say “no” to them after the request has been made. If you know that requests are likely to be made, perhaps in a meeting, just say to everyone as soon as you come into the meeting, “Look guys, just to let you know, my week is booked full with some urgent projects and I won’t be able to take on any new requests.”
  8. Get back to you. Instead of providing an answer then and there, it’s often better to tell the person you’ll give their request some thought and get back to them. This will allow you to give it some consideration, and check your commitments and priorities. Then, if you can’t take on the request, simply tell them: “After giving this some thought, and checking my commitments, I won’t be able to accommodate the request at this time.” At least you gave it some consideration.
  9. Maybe later. If this is an option that you’d like to keep open, instead of just shutting the door on the person, it’s often better to just say, “This sounds like an interesting opportunity, but I just don’t have the time at the moment. Perhaps you could check back with me in [give a time frame].” Next time, when they check back with you, you might have some free time on your hands.
  10. It’s not you, it’s me. This classic dating rejection can work in other situations. Don’t be insincere about it, though. Often the person or project is a good one, but it’s just not right for you, at least not at this time. Simply say so — you can compliment the idea, the project, the person, the organization … but say that it’s not the right fit, or it’s not what you’re looking for at this time. Only say this if it’s true — people can sense insincerity.

Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

Advertising

Read Next