Your ability to adapt to failure and navigate your way out of it, absolutely 100 percent makes you who you are. Viola Davis
When I was in graduate school I took a class on “Qohelet” (more commonly known as the Book of Ecclesiastes). Believed to be written by King Solomon, the book holds place as one of my favorites in the Bible. It is indeed a profound book on the wisdom of everyday living.
Out of Control
After just a few weeks, the entire class arrived at the conclusion that the wisdom of Qohelet leads one to understand that “life cannot be controlled.” No, life is not to be controlled, but rather to be navigated.
The idea came up that life is much like river rafting. You cannot control the ways of the river, sometimes smooth and sometimes threatening. No, like the river, life cannot be controlled but, with wisdom, you can still enjoy meaning and purpose… but not without trials and setbacks. But we gain wisdom and develop deep character in those trials and setbacks and failures.
Navigating Politics and Pandemics
As I pondered my “Intentions” for 2021, I was forced to consider just how I might navigate my way through yet another year of wayward politics and pandemics. I cannot control the government. I cannot control the virus. And I cannot control the foolishness of anger and disrespect that I fear will be rampant in the USA this year.
Truthfully, I can only focus on me. That’s enough for any of us to manage.
Let’s be honest here. Much of 2021 will most likely be a continuation of 2020—at least for a few months. So I wondered, what tools will I require to navigate my way through a difficult year? I do believe my “raft” will stay afloat (or not) if I can maintain a solid inner self and a temperate outer self.
My Theme for 2021
Working with Dena Crowder early in December 2020 I determined that my personal theme for 2021 is Peace. In order for me to live peacefully I know a few things will be necessary. Here’s my navigator’s Quick Start Manual:
For Inner Peace
- Know that I am not God. That role has already been filled.
- Identify character qualities that will be essential, like patience and self-care.
For External Peace
- Choose to emotionally disengage from harmful, angry people.
- Proceed with determined compassion.
- Choose to serve.
Okay. It’s not much of a manual. But my life will be much better if I follow these few predetermined character traits. As to the outcome? We’ll see.
Build Resilient Living
Photo courtesy of XXX at istockphoto