Monday, December 23, 2013

What If This Whole Life Is Just A School?

I am always interested in education, and very unlikely, lately I am fascinated by curriculums. A talk by Sir Ken Robinson in 2009 pretty much opened my mind about individualized curriculum and how creativity should be treated at the same importance as literacy. Another talk that gave me shivers was Marianne Williamson's, in which she talks about "life curriculum".

Instead of thinking about life as crazy old lady who likes to see us suffer, wouldn't it be great to see it as a lifelong school?

To see life as a school is to believe that everything happens for us to learn something, and as Marianne Williamson says, "Everybody has their own highly individualized curriculum, designed exclusively just for us." why not think of it this way?

In life school, Some will have different lessons, and maybe same material in different timings. Somebody might have to learn about patience at the age of 5, waiting for her brother to give her a toy, and somebody else might have to learn at 32, trying to be pregnant but haven't been granted one for years. Somebody might have to learn about perseverance for 15 years of hardwork, while somebody else should learn how to maintain 15 years of marriage.

In lifeschool, we are taught different things in various ways. And as all the classes we are familiar with, there will be tests. Problems. These problems might be solved differently, one might require more time than the other, one might have to work in groups, one might only able to do it alone.

At one specific moment, two friends might go through very different kind of problem. One might think it is unfair, but with highly individualized curriculum, there must be something that someone urgently needs to learn about for that particular moment. Maybe one is 'on holiday' while the other is 'in exam'. Some might face big problems in order to get bonus grades. In life, people go through problems like abuse, addiction, or great loss. But have you ever met those people who went through such things, learned the hard way, became enormously inspiring, and affected more people than they have ever imagined?

So maybe, just maybe, when problems show up, instead of asking, "What have I done to deserve this?" which will usually lead to self-hatred or anger toward life (and the Source of Life), why not asking, "What should I learn from this by the end of this?"

I know, that sounds extremely optimist and really hard to deal with when we are actually in the middle of bitter experiences. I, of all people, am one of those people who cry for days for little problems and used to be so negative toward life that I even saw all good moments as a bridge to another suffering.
But I asked myself, why not try to think of life this way? If we believe that life is much bigger than us and it wants nothing but to teach us something, don't you think we will be able to walk through life with lighter steps?

Good teachers would be happy when the students get good grades, not because the exam is easy, but because the students earn the grades. Why not think that life cannot hardly wait to give you good grades, but it is waiting for us to earn it? It is joyful when we keep showing up and try, it is joyful when we attend class consciously, aware of the information and the process we are going through.

So...don't be a dropout at this lifeschool. Maybe we need holidays. Maybe sometimes we skip classes. But persevere, and believe that in graduation day, we should show up excitedly, knowing the teachers will line up to congratulate us for being a great student.    Sir Ken Robinson; Do schools kill creativity?     Marianne Williamson on Oprah's Super Soul Sunday

Facebook Is NOT Your Best Friend

How many friends do you have on Facebook?
I have 1,151.

Do you know how many stable relationships people can have, according to Dunbar's Number?

Do you know how many people who knows everything about me?

I used to be a Facebook-status-whore;
I put everything of me on Facebook; my problems, my happiness, my sadness, my depressions, my struggle with depression, my mood-swing, my broken heart.

Somehow I did not learn from my high school experience when I shared my deepest secret with some people who turn out to think that I was seeking for attention and hated me for it (and by the way, I then asked for their forgiveness for being so annoying).

Years gone by after that particular moment and still I put myself out there on Facebook, giving myself on a plate to be judged and seen through by everybody (1,151 people, that is), just because I want to be completely honest in life, because I want to scream without any sound, never knowing that the scream created huge wave-effect, coming back to me and gladly drowning me in the deep sea of terror and unworthiness.

I found people talk about it, not in an empathic ways. Once again some says I was seeking for attention, and the only attention I was getting is pity, which might be the least thing I need when I am in the middle of a huge self-esteem and self-worth problem.

But then I found myself what they call best friends.
In different levels and moments of my life, they keep showing up, they know the bad and the ugly, they see me in tantrums and breakdowns, and still they stand up for me against others. They didn't post any comment on my status, but texted me instead to offer their ears for my story, offer their energy, time, and space to help me get through it, though sometimes the only thing they can do is just to listen. But most of the times, it is enough.

They are the people with whom I share my life with and take it as an honour.

There will never be 1,151 people in your life who would actually do that.

You might be loved for your work, for your vision, for your words, for your thoughts, and you might impress thousands or millions. But the most sacred place in your heart should not contain all of them.

Share your story only to people who earn the right to hear your story. --Brene Brown

It doesn't mean we have to keep our life secret to everybody, because you have no idea how many people might be inspired by what you are going through, and sometimes you will find out how many unexpected people would actually support you during tough times.

But a story compromising your sense of worth, a story you know will affect you immensely, a story you are actually afraid to tell; choose wisely whom you share those stories with. Because (I learned the real hard way, and still learning) we are all worthy of love and belonging, and sharing that kind of story with the people who do not care will only add the salt to the wound.

Do not cast your pearl before the swine.

Stop pouring your whole heart out on Facebook.

Choose wisely.

Somebody who loves you for all you are might just be a phone call away.