I actually have about nine of them, so this post is a listicle. It’s just absolutely amazing how the most mundane things can bring about great life lessons.
So walk with me on this journey as I share with you lessons that my new shoe rack invariably taught me.
1. The Bigger the Capacity, the Bigger the Dream.
Our ability to dream, or rather the magnitude of dreams we have is directly proportional to our capacities.
Hence, to dream big, we need to build capacity; expand our mind, thinking, broaden our horizon.
We can only dream big when we truly have a large capacity to handle it.
So tell me, do you have the capacity to handle that big dream of yours?
I’m not saying to let yourself be limited but to instead break those limits.
2. Contentment is Relative.
While I happened to get a new shoe rack, I didn’t actually deliberately acquire it. Apparently, someone dear to me saw the need for me and got it, which I am very thrilled about.
Before I got the new rack, I was quite content with the old one. Didn’t even see the need for another since it served my purpose so well. It contained my shoes perfectly though not flawlessly. It was wobbly, not strong enough, but I managed it.
So my question to you is this: are you truly content, or just simply complacent? Is the reason why you’re satisfied right where you are because you’re not thinking of something better?
This brings me to my next point.
3. Settling isn’t The Answer.
My shoe rack taught me that I had unconsciously settled.
Do you have a settling mindset? To just take and accept whatever is thrown at you?
I didn’t know I could get or that I even deserved better. I just never thought about it, I mean it never occurred to me.
So I’ll ask you this, are you where you are right now in life because you chose it, or did it just happen to you?
Many times we go through life passive, instead of proactive. Letting go of our power of choice. Caught between the life we want vs the life we would rather choose.
At this point, I would like to remind you of the serenity prayer;
God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference.
I’m not asking you to go change the things you absolutely cannot change as we know that there are simply things outside of our sphere of influence. What I’m saying, is to not complain about things that you can change, but to embrace the power to change them and make those right moves.
4. Avoid the Thirst Trap.
Economics teaches that human wants and needs are vaguely insatiable.
We are a species with an inbuilt desire to acquire more, and so for me, with this new acquisition of a brand new shoe rack came the desire for more shoes.
There are certain things to note here:
- I saw the need to expand my shoe collection and mostly because I had the room and capacity to do so.
- I was confident to get more, knowing that I could most conveniently accommodate them.
Therefore, an increase in capacity brings with it a confidence boost.
However, being in a generation plagued by instant gratification; we want to get everything now.
I knew that throwing caution to the wind will most likely get me in some financial trouble.
So I accept that expansion can be a process, delayed gratification can be more rewarding on the long-term.
Filling those scanty space little by little over a period of time would be the smarter choice.
It’s important to know that we don’t have to fulfil every single desire of ours immediately, that’s where discipline comes in.
We’ve learnt that it’s okay to say “NO” to others, but do you also know how to say it to yourself? To deny yourself certain things even though you know you have the ability to do them? There is power in restraint and self-control.
Wow, this one was definitely two-in-one.
5. With an Increase in Capacity, comes an Increase in Need or Demand.
Undoubtedly, this one’s a no-brainer. Like I said earlier, everything that is positive probably has a negative side to it.
Life’s like a coin with two sides.
I talked about how the new acquisition could potentially result in the danger of obsessively spending money to acquire more shoes.
A common example to illustrate this point, is how it’s often seen, that people attempt to upgrade their lifestyle choices when their earnings have increased. It’s somewhat an unwritten law of nature, it happens naturally without people thinking too much or paying attention to it. If left unchecked, more will never be enough. “He that is undisciplined in managing little will likely squander much”
6. Motivation is Key.
Behind every action, there is always a motive, a reason.
Life exists as a cause and effect relationship. Everything struggling to attain a delicate balance.
So we ask ourselves this question, why are you doing what you do?
At the time, I thought that gaining new shoes will be pointlessly fueling my vanity. I reasoned that it was futile to splurge to gain shoes that I might rarely wear, or use only to fulfil an aesthetic need and the visual pleasure of a full shoe rack on display.
This is why we need to checkmate our actions, look inward into our hearts to see if the reason or motive is valid, of a worthy cause.
7. Bigger isn’t always Better – This is Relative.
What makes us individuals is the very fact that we are each uniquely different in diverse ways. This extends to our needs.
It’s common to fall for the bane that is comparison and reason that you need bigger when you really don’t, but simply because someone else did.
It’s best to tailor your life not according to someone else’s standards, but according to your own individual needs.
I’ve laid great emphasis on capacity building.
Life is step by step. It’s not often beneficial to skip the due process.
Ensure that whatever it is that you acquire, whether material or not, you have made room for it to fit into your life and space. Now, this statement is very profound and can be applied in various ways, and I hope you catch it.
8. Build Structure.
Whatever dream it is that you carry within, it’s highly paramount to create a support structure for it, and you will know why in my last point.
Not only do you need structure, but it also has to be an adequate one. If you know a lot about building and construction, you will understand the relevance of good walls and a sturdy foundation, the right platform etcetera.
Know that a wobbly one can only take or carry you so much or far before it crumbles and comes tumbling down. However, a sturdy one will most definitely stand the test of time.
You might be wondering what “structure” means in an actual sense. Well, these include mental reinforcements, emotional support from friends and family, proper planning, gaining the right tools, skills, people and resources. All of these combine to help you achieve what you desire.
I’m down to my last point now. Remember I said the need for structure will make perfect sense in the end, here goes.
9. The Greater, Higher and Bigger a thing is, the more Catastrophic the results of a fall will be.
I’m not sure I need to explain this so much, it speaks for itself. I mean we have so many physical examples all around us.
I’m sure there’s probably a scientific explanation for why this is a phenomenon, but it remains a logical experience.
The purpose of this point isn’t to scare you or discourage you from thinking or dreaming big. No, far from it. The last thing I want is to stifle your mind from growth.
I desire for you to understand and thus lay emphasis on why it’s not only important to build structure, but to guard your dreams.
I hope you’ve been blessed by these nine lessons of mine from my shoe rack.
This corroborates the whole essence of my blog, of blogging; which is to extract life lessons from the most mundane occurrences, and show that life is always trying to teach us something if only we’d open up our hearts, and perhaps pay a little bit more attention to the happenings around us.
THIS is serendipity.
Dream Big and Strive to be your best self.
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Love and Grace,
© Zizi 2020.