I used to think that in life I was always working towards this definitive set of circumstances. That everything I did was with the purpose of getting that life, the great job, the lovely family and friends, the perfect house, the wonderful lifestyle. I thought you could collect and hoard all those things, placing them all in one big box until your perfect life was finally assembled for you to blissfully enjoy forever after.
Of course, I wasn’t quite this dewy eyed about it, but I still believed in that general idea, that you could collect all these aspects of your life and then have them all at your fingertips.
But then, that never happens, because all aspects of your life are never all wonderful at the same time. There are always going to be parts of your life that are going badly. The flip side to this though, is that at the same time there will always be parts of your life that are going well. The trick is to instill in your mind to always recognise and appreciate these good parts.
Now I think of life as lots and lots of different, smaller, boxes. Boxes of time. You go from box to box, and in each box there are different elements. Different people, different schools, different jobs, different lifestyles, different versions of your body, different hobbies, different everything. Sometimes these things overlap, and the same things stay in your boxes over time, but no two boxes are ever the same. For example, you will never be the same age in different boxes, and for the most part you will have different challenges from box to box.
Now in every box there are always going to be good things and bad things. No box is ever all bad or all good. You can choose yourself which aspects of the box you focus on, but bear in mind that you can never go back to the box if you find you focused on the wrong things while you were there. Those who are clever, appreciate the better aspects of a box while they have the chance.
Because there are good things in your life right now that are never going to be there again. And you might be too busy (like I certainly am) lamenting over the bad parts to be appreciative of the good. You never know what’s around the corner, what’s in the next box, you might lose a loved one, be hit by a car and become lame, get an illness, lose your pet. Anything could happen.
I’ll never again be this young. I have so much freedom right now. I have so much time. I’m writing this blog that I’m excited about. I have my entire family around me every day. I have friends messaging me all the time. I have a fully functioning body.
It could all be gone in a moment.
So instead of moping about all my woes, I will appreciate what I have while I have it, and recognise that there are parts of my life right now that I will later miss.