Smile Through It II: The Next Chapter

Chasing dreams, because I can

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Posted by Oli on Saturday 10th March, 2007

Sometimes people really make life hard for themselves – and they don’t seem to realise how much they’re contributing to it themselves.

It struck me watching the BBC’s new Fame Academy thing for Comic Relief first off. Every night they all step up into the “circle of fear” to perform slightly out-of-tune, glorified karioke versions of wel-known songs to varying degrees of success (and even I’ll admit that Ray Stubbs had me smiling tonight with his version of “Lola”). But what kind of a mind-set does it get you in to call your performance space the “circle of fear”?

If you want to ward off your nerves and give of your best, you need to be feeling positive and confident when you step up to the mic. Telling yourself you’re stepping into the worst 12 feet of space in a building is hardly gearing yourself up for success, is it?

But that’s not the thing that’s lead me to this. What’s bothered me tonight is reading another blog of a lady who says she’s “not coping” with all the things in her life.

She lists all the many things going wrong with her – some unavoidable, some unbelievably sad and some which, to me, are a matter of pure perspective.

Some people – and this isn’t aimed merely in one direction – don’t seem to know how to let things go. They like to wallow in their failures, their mistakes, their foibles and to make sure everyone else knows how much they are suffering.

You know what? We all are. We all have our own daemons, our own battles to fight, our own mountains to climb. Bad things happen – that’s a part of life.

But the measure of a man – or a woman, or a child – is whether he can take the knocks on the chin and get right back up, look life in the eye and say, “Is that all you’ve got for me?” It’s not easy, but neither is it meant to be – nor should it be. Where is the joy in victory if you’ve not had to fight to get it?

Sometimes you fight and sometimes you lose, but there’s no good to come from dwelling on your losses. That’s not to say you can’t learn from them, but you’ve got to take your lesson and move right along. A rolling stone gathers no moss, it’s said, and why open yourself up to being over-taken by weeds when you can keep on moving and break free?

Blame is the hardest thing in the world to accept, yet some people choose to heap it on themselves. Why go through life carrying a burden that you’ve given yourself? Come on, life gives us enough to carry on our own, there’s no point adding to it. Blaming yourself for things you can’t change is a surefire way to get yourself into a vicious circle of personal degradation.

I don’t mean to sound like I’m belittling people’s problems, nor do I intend to suggest that I’m forever rosey and never have my dark days – anyone reading this blog over time will know how much I’ve struggled. I merely mean to suggest that sometimes, you need to offer yourself a fresh perpective on your situation – to look at it from a different angle and see if the insurmountable is actually just really f***ing hard.

“Fate doesn’t hang on a wrong or right choice,
Fortune depends on the tone of your voice.”


2 Responses to “Wallowing”

  1. Frizzymum said

    I’m finally beginning to realise that there are people in the world who naturally ‘give’ – in material, spiritual and emotional terms – and there are others who ‘take’. It is possible to travel along the spectrum, but most people’s characters have them as either one or the other.

    Takers deserve no less support or friendship than anyone else, but they should come with a health warning attached!

    Oli – you and your lovely family are givers. Take care x.

  2. DarkMark said

    I think we’re all guilty of wallowing to some extent and I’m not an exception.
    Reading quite a few blogs I do find one or two seem to not just have the “Drama Llama” follow them home, but also have it as a permanent fixture in their lives.
    I think some people feel they deserve more attention and sympathy than anyone else and start getting even more upset if they don’t get that attention.

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