Friday, April 20, 2012

Lesson Learned – Again...

I believe that we’re all here on this earth to learn, progress, and grow. And I also believe that you will keep being given the lessons you’re meant to learn, until you learn them. Sometimes, you’ll find yourself making the same mistakes, or going through the same trials and tribulations, over and over, and wonder, “Why me?”.

But rather than thinking of these things as happening to you by chance, or worse yet, because the universe is out to get you, I think it’s better to take a closer look and see what lesson is being taught to you. What can you learn from this situation and how can your own actions help you avoid it again?

I’ve recently found myself in a number of discouraging situations that can all be traced back to my own lack of action. Whether due to being overwhelmed and disorganized or just plain old procrastination, it was always a matter of me not being responsible or diligent or following through on something.

I think for a while, I was so on top of things that I let myself get complacent. I took on the attitude of “Yeah, I got this” and stopped working so hard at keeping up with everything I needed to get done. I had been working so hard for so long, I felt I deserved a break…and somehow I never got back to working hard again.

It’s been really humbling to see all the results of my mistakes – we lost out on a big chunk of money we were due to receive; my credit score dipped; my professional reputation at work may have taken a little hit – but rather than wallow in self-pity, I’ve resolved to be grateful.

I’m grateful that I got these wake-up calls to stay responsible and organized and proactive, and I’m thankful that we’re able to weather these setbacks without any long-term or serious consequences.

But most of all, I’m grateful that I was able to recognize them for what they were: a lesson that I’m being taught, and that I need to start applying every day. It’s an ongoing effort, but when the universe puts a lesson in front of you time and again, the best thing you can do is learn the lesson and move on.


  1. Just_Jenn - I think even having "shoulditis" and its burning desire to be a better person than you are currently is noble. I fear too many people think of self improvement solely in terms of wealth and physical beauty.

    But I find compelling the arguments in the "Study Hacks" blog by Cal Newport, and I think they offer a different perspective on goals and career paths than Unlost. I can't do the writing justice, but he makes a compelling argument that it's all too easy to burn out by spreading yourself too thin with too many goals. Razor focus is essential for success, but so is leisure and rest - and when you have kids and a marriage plus a career and some personal passions, leisure and rest are nowhere. He also makes a strong argument that tremendous mastery of one skill is more personally rewarding and useful for a career than competence in many.

    I hope you are not offended that my first comment on your blog is a reference to another blog. Good luck.
    -Mike S. (EsauCairn is an obscure pulp action hero, this is actually Mike S. from our days at da U.)

    1. Mike, I LOVE this comment, no apologies are needed!! You have hit amazingly on target with a lot of thoughts that have been rolling around in my head over the last few particularly hectic days. I think there is no single perfect formula for everyone, just a different, pretty good formula for each person, and I'm working on finding mine.

      There are times when I think, "Why should I have to be freaking Wonder Woman? I shouldn't have to do it all, and damnit, I'm not going to!!" And then other days, I think, "But I WANT to be Wonder Woman and do it all!" :)

      I'm definitely spread a little thin these days - but I'm learning to "take turns" among my priorities as opposed to trying to do everything at once, and also letting some things sit on the back burner for a while.

      Thanks for the blog/article recommendations - I will definitely check them out!!