The World Is Our Classroom
Author: Catherine Pulsifer, © 2008
I recently read some of H. Jackson Brown, Jr’s work. He has one piece that is entitled, “Live and Learn and Pass It On”. Here is a partial piece of that work:
I’ve learned that most of the things I worry about never happen. -age 64
I’ve learned that every great achievement was once considered impossible. -age 47
I’ve learned that you can’t hide a piece of broccoli in a glass of milk. -age 7
I’ve learned that if there were no problems there would be no opportunities. -age 19
I’ve learned that it doesn’t cost anything to be nice. -age 66
I’ve learned that the important thing is not what others think of me but what I think of me. -age 38
There Is A Lot to Learn In This World
Each thing we learn does not have to be a magnificent revelation but only something that sticks with you over time. Here are just a few things you may have learned over time:
– Most things in life that one worries about never happen. One of the greatest testaments to people’s stupidity is the power of control given to worry. Worry, as we should all know by now, never accomplishes anything. Well, maybe I’m wrong. Worry over a long period in life can produce adverse health issues. But, I’m convinced that health issues are not what anyone wants or desires.As I alluded to earlier, the only power that worry has is what you give it. This means that you allow worry to dominate in your mind and the more you let worry into your thoughts, the more power it has over you. Remember, that you always have a choice; your choice can be to live knowing that worry has never produced one ounce of help, joy, or resolution or you can live with worry as a constant and heavy weight upon your shoulder of life.
– Great achievements are not always accomplished by the most educated but the most determined. Education by itself is no more valuable than one without education. The real difference in any aspect of life be that educated or not, tall or thin, while or black, rich or poor is what one does with what has been given to you. Those who are highly educated can waste their blessings if they do not use what they have learned because to keep knowledge, or the value to rectify situations to themselves, does nothing for those around them. The value of each person is not measured by some cultural definition of bountifulness but is properly measured by what one contributes to society as a whole. To each person is given talents and gifts that can be used or abused. It is immaterial how a person contributes to the overall well-being of those within the family, or village, or town, or city, or province or state as long as the person contributes to the best of their innate abilities.
– Problems are the greatest reflection of possibilities to be and that failures are the best teachers in the world. The statement above reflects the underlying impetus for growth and advancement. Without problems there would be no need to find solutions or different ways or better ways of doing things. Just like Thomas Edison’s invention of the lightbulb would never have taken place if the use of candles were ultimately sufficient for everyone’s needs and desires. And, with one new addition of a solution to a need or a problem comes another new and better method.
– To be nice, to be kind, to show compassion doesn’t cost you a penny and what you give is worth more than money can buy. Have you ever noticed that those people who are stingy, selfish or mean are often all alone in life? These types of people do not enjoy the benefits of loving and kind relationships because they do not extend courtesy to others. But, do not despair thinking that you cannot influence even these often mean spirited individuals. Maybe it is more that they have never been part of a caring family rather than it is that they have never experienced what love is. The more you extend caring, kindness and compassion towards these types of people, the more you begin the process of sowing positive seeds in their life. If you expect to see instant change in these types of people, don’t be alarmed or give up when you see no substantial change. Just remember that any new behavior takes time to manifest itself.
– You can’t have what you can’t see, and you can’t see what you don’t dream about. Dreams are the initial establishment of things that can be. Without a dream there is no change in any circumstance or way of life. However, it is not only a dream that fosters growth but it is, instead, the taking of action in regards to the dream that brings it to life and fruition. Please give your dreams an opportunity to become reality. This implies that to dream is not the same as to do. I have known multitudes of people who have had a dream but they have never taken any action to even begin. And, if you start to take action, you also need to have determination, perseverance and dedication to bring a dream to reality. Do not give up just because you may encounter setbacks or initial failure. To be successful means that one failure is the be all and end all. A failure is a valuable teacher in that lessons can be learned to be mobilized in your next attempt.
When we kept a journal and each year on our birthday we wrote the most significant thing or things that occurred in our life, and what we learned from this, then we would have a legacy to pass on to our children. Think of your last five years. What one thing did you learn that you would share with someone that you love?
What I Have Learned
2007 – I’ve learned that life is precious and we never know if tomorrow will come. It is critical that we live each day to the fullest. Each person, each minute is only a heartbeat away from death. Live each day as if it was your last.
2006 – I’ve learned that sometimes you need to ask for help, that you can’t do it all.
2005 – I’ve learned that sometimes no matter how much you help someone, if they don’t want to change or learn, you can’t change them, you can only change yourself.
2004 – I’ve learned to appreciate the changing of the seasons; sometimes we get so busy in life that we don’t appreciate the simple things in life.
2003 – I’ve learned that dreams can come true. If you stick to your goals, don’t get discouraged, persevere and persist when faced with roadblocks.
What Have You Learned
What have you learned in the last five years that has changed your thinking, or influenced your life? By recording the wisdom in your life events you will actually have the beginnings of your story. There is a saying, “every life is a story, make yours a best seller.”
Inspirational Quotes for Reflection:
“Either do something about it or fix it, but don’t worry.” Patricia Akins, Things They Don’t Teach You In High School
“In every single thing you do, you are choosing a direction. Your life is a product of choices.” Dr. Kathleen Hall
“Don’t live in your own world. It is best to learn what others have achieved and this will also give you the psyche to get there.” Dennis Jansen, Articles Of Growth
“Life is a game and your mission, if you choose to accept it, is to play fully.” Wendy Hearn
“Make your life be a great one, one of positivity, unlimited dreams, and, never forget, be kind, you can’t always rewind.” Jason Hall, Captain Dad’s Treasure Map
“This is for all of you out there tonight, reaching for a dream – don’t ever give up! Never ever listen to anyone, when they try to discourage you, because they do that, believe me!” Mariah Carey
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