Acceptology: Flowing and trusting life
Once upon a time there was a very wise and even-tempered farmer who lived in a small village with his son and his horse. One morning when they woke up, they saw that the horse had run away. All the villagers ran to his house and said to him, «What bad luck, now you won’t be able to plow the land and you will go hungry». He replied: «Bad luck, good luck, who knows». The next day, the horse returned with a bunch of wild horses, and everyone in the village ran to tell him «What good luck, now you are rich with so many horses!». He replied, «Good luck, bad luck, who knows.» A few days later, his son was taming one of the wild horses and fell, breaking both his legs. Again, all the villagers came to tell him «What bad luck, with your son like that you will not be able to plow and you are already too old!». To which he replied: «Bad luck, good luck, who knows». The following week, the chief of his village went to war with the neighboring villages, and all the young men were conscripted to go and fight to the death. All except the farmer’s son. Again, the neighbors of the village went to tell him «What good fortune, your son has been spared from the war!». To which the farmer replied, «Good luck, bad luck, who knows.»
What it is, is what it is, and it is time to accept it. Accepting it does not mean agreeing with it, nor does it mean resigning oneself to it. It means «working with what there is». And from there, to decide what I want to do. Acceptance is a quality of the «I», of the consciousness, of the protagonist who looks at and evaluates the cards that life is giving her at that moment, without judgment. Resignation is of the ego, of victimhood, which covers up a contained rage because it believes it can do nothing. Acceptance makes it possible to decide to do, resignation is fear of doing.
The wise say that everything that happens to us is for something, that we have something to learn from it. You can believe it or not. But it will pass. We can flow with life or fight with it. It will happen anyway, it will be whatever it is, the issue is how we are going to live it, what interpretation and internal dialogue we are going to validate
When I was finishing my economics degree, I applied for what I considered my dream job at the time. A brand manager position at Frigo ice cream (Unilever). There were about 250 candidates. Two of us made it to the final. I was not chosen. The consolation that everyone told me «you have to be proud, you made it to the final» was useless. I felt like a loser. I thought a thousand and one times about the last interview, and I told myself things that not even my worst enemy would tell me. What bad luck! Bad luck or good luck, who knows?
A few months later, I applied for the Generalitat’s international trade scholarships to do a year’s internship in the Spanish Commercial Offices around the world. They are very coveted scholarships and with very demanding tests and interviews. I got a scholarship at Ofcomes in Mexico, where I spent one of the best years of my life. I have amazing memories, anecdotes and friends from that wonderful year. As life zoomed by, preparing for the Unilever position certainly helped me to be more prepared for the scholarship application. And if I had been taken at Unilever I would not have gone to Mexico.
Life is a continuous present, it does not stop. Wanting to control it 100%, besides being tiring and useless, does not leave us the option to look forward to the next great thing that may come. What I am saying does not invalidate being proactive and planning.
I, as of today, have chosen the glasses of trusting life, being grateful and looking forward to everything. The invitation is, from maturity and experience, to try to recover the openness, the ability to surprise and flow with life that we had as children. It is a decision, an attitude, and taking into account that life will flow the same way, like the river, I personally believe that it is better to live it and not resist it. It wasn’t always like that, but with these glasses I’m happier.
And what glasses have you chosen?
As always, don’t believe anything, experience it.
Learn more about my experience as a Coach