You Live, You Unlearn
This was not a typo. You've heard it said: ' you live, you learn'. And that's a great way to live. One must always strive to be teachable. There's just so so much to learn and see and discover and understand out there, that putting on blinders and living life with a sense of having arrived and being a know- it-all, is horrible, detrimental and just plain boring if you ask me.
There's so many new joys to find, so many new behaviours to observe, cultures to soak in, food to eat, landscapes to experience and so Live and Learn is a very good motto.
Today, however, I want to discuss taking that extra step that is going to require a lot of intentionality and a whole lot of humility too.
Doesn't sound like everyone's cup of tea does it?😅
This is going to be slightly lengthy so buckle up.
Ok, so imagine yourself soaking up all the culture and life we talked about above. And no one should be so dumb as to go through life expecting just the good.
So imagine yourself walking in this huge meadow of life. Full of different fruits and flowers and things that you smell and taste and this fills your basket. That's one season. It could be short or long or for some, even a whole lifetime.
And so if you want more out of life, you move on to meadow no.2. You do the same happy exercise all over again. Fill your basket of life and have your fill.
And so on and so forth.
Now I'm not talking to the people who live in the same chair all their lives.
Them I don't understand and I don't know enough about their psyche to make a public judgement on my blogpost.
Personally I feel it's sad. But that's my opinion. And I would probably someday like to sit with one of them and have a conversation. When I do, I'll tell you.
Coming back to the meadow travellers.
As you can imagine, in the same meadow there will also be thorn brushes and bees and ants and pollens that trigger your allergy.
To put it plainly: life and it's ups and downs. Bad experiences, bad encounters, bad health issues. All of this is part of the package.
I'm going to give you real life, nameless examples.
A man I knew many years ago had 4 kids. They lived in a small Indian town on an average income and then relocated abroad for a few years where they made good money. Lived well, had the best things but some political uprisings saw them back in India and their financial situation changed for the worst. They had some savings so they managed but for a few bad years, they lived life on the lean. Month to month, bare necessities kinda thing.
And then his kids grew up and all of them did really well for themselves and they were back to having good things from a good secure financial place.
But the years have taken a toll on this man. He cannot let go for the insecurity and the worry of those lean years and although he has had twice the number of years being secured and comfortable, he does not enjoy the good things. They either make him upset worrying that his kids might be being stupid and not saving for when the shoe drops.
Or it makes him judgemental that they're "wasting money". Either way no one's happy in that conversation.
A lady in Europe and her family. Living happy but frugal lives. Making use of freebies and coupons and such. But her husband was a very smart man and soon started his own business which became 2 and more and now they are quite rich.
But if you meet her behind the scenes at an event, once the money's been collected and people being paid back for their investment, this rich lady will take back her amount too. However small that is.
It's just become a habit now and frankly it's sad to see.
For my part, I can honestly say that I have definitely being a bit judgemental towards women who had divorces.
This is what I'm trying to say: well, crap happens. It happens to everyone. Some more than others, granted.
And I feel that if it's a genuine traumatic experience, please go see a counsellor. This is my heartfelt advice. No one should go through life being scared of it!
But there are some things that are very much in our control.
But we have got to take the time to Unlearn some of life that we picked up along the way.
Some of us even do it already without knowing.
For example, which parent here can say that they didn't have to change the way they treated the second child vs the life and expectations they had set when they had their first?
A good parent will treat each child differently as per the child.
If you haven't, they'll be talking about you in therapy some years from now😁.
So this is going to take a very intentional and humble person to think that ok, this was my life for a while. But I don't know everything.
And there could be more on the other side of unlearning this behaviour of penny penching.
It was a necessity once. Bless you. But not anymore!
It takes a big person to say that I did not understand what makes someone do what they did.
I have now seen both sides of the story.
I choose to put my prejudice away and deal with grace.
Yes some of what I'm saying is subjective. But so is life!
When you take the moral compass as your base and your faith as your barometer, the rest of what happens is for a season.
I'm not just spouting some random thought.
I know of a school that houses boarders from remote villages and they provide international school facilities, education, clothes, food. Everything is free of cost to these kids.
The only condition is that the kids have to live on campus. They can go home only for major holidays and emergencies.
The reason was that they noticed that when the kids went home everyday to their local customs and lifestyle, they came back with the cultural baggages that the school was trying to help them shed to move up in life.
Our minds are stronger than we give them credit for.
What do you need to unlearn today?