“When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves” (Viktor E Frankl)
We’re all constantly evolving. We never truly stand still. We really are quite adaptable beings in so many ways. And we probably don’t celebrate our propensity for change enough. I think of myself maybe 10 years ago and think what the differences are over the years. To my mind, there are quite a few. Firstly I’m much more considered in my approach to things, I still have quite an impulsive character but I suppose I’ve learnt to control that a bit better than I ever could.
I used to have to be the one at the table making the most noise and in the limelight but the years have mellowed me on that score and now I’m more than happy to sit to side and listen to the conversation going back and forward and only interject when I actually have something interesting to say. Silence doesn’t bother me when I’m with people like it would have a few years ago, I came to the realisation that the people I’m truly close to, I feel very comfortable sitting there just saying nothing at times. I don’t need to fill the void to enjoy their company.
I’m certainly much less stuck in my ways and able to adapt to the world around me so much easier. Although I would admit I’m still a great admirer of routines and structuring time, I’m much more open to that structure being challenged and changed than I ever was and so much more open to the unexpected. That in a way is my acceptance of not being in control, and realising I can’t control the world and only letting things worry me that I can do something about.
Age gives you perspective, those things that we thought were massively important years ago, really aren’t at all. I used to get nervous before talking to rooms of people or sitting in meetings with people I deemed to be more important than myself, but I realise now, they are just people like me and is this really worth winding myself up for. I’ve learnt to be calm, and in what potentially is looking like a stressful situation, I’ve learnt to step back, look at it logically and concentrate on fixing what is wrong instead of stressing about the problem. To my mind the stressing just delays the solution and isn’t particularly helpful;.
Also most importantly and it’s still very much a work in progress, I’ve learnt (am learning) to live and enjoy the moment. Our minds can so often be thinking about the past and the future that we forget to appreciate those moments when our world is perfect, when everything around us aligns.
Evolution for me comes from our willingness to expose ourselves to situations which we aren’t truly comfortable in, because the more we do this, the more we learn that what scares us about these situations is irrational. I’m still very much work in progress though.
It’s important to evolve, to keep putting ourselves out there, to look back to see where we’ve come from and how far we’ve travelled. It’s quite a journey.