You tried your best, you worked hard, you put it on your vision board, you meditated about it, you prayed for it…and despite your good intention and herculean efforts it’s a big fat fail. There are few things as frustrating as the realization that despite our best efforts the universe just refuses to cooperate. I know I’ve felt that way.
Not fair right? The rule is that with enough hard work, dedication and practice we are supposed to be able to do anything we want to! We are the one in a million! We are the odds defying statistical outlier…and dammit…movies should be written about our tragic yet inspirational stories. Yes. We are believers. We believe with our whole hearts.
So what the heck man? Why is it not working out? How did we get fired? How are we broke and about to close the business? How did our relationship break up? How did we NOT get accepted to the grad program we know we were just destined for? How did we get rejected from the path we know is ours? How is this so PAINFUL!?
Consider this just for a second… what if the universe knows you just a little bit better than you know yourself. What if the journey that leads to authentic self involves some doors being shut in your face. It involves what you perceive as failure. It teaches and redirects through the pain of rejection.
I hadn’t mindfully considered this before but in my role as vocational counselor it is a possibility I would be remiss not to address. I’ve been there. I’ve messed up big time. I’ve come up short. I’ve not been picked. I’ve been left for something more interesting or attractive. Despite my best efforts I have not been smart enough, or the right size, or known the right people or been able to create the thing that would win approval and accolades from someone that mattered in that moment.
What if the doors that close teach us just as much about who we are as the doors that open easily?
Parker Palmer addresses this very issue beautifully in his book, “Let Your Life Speak.” Maybe we failed for a reason. Maybe it really was lack of effort even though we thought our heart was in it. Maybe what we were trying to force ourselves through was just so contrary to the nature of who we are it became impossible.
I can’t tell you how many students across my desk have felt destined to become a pro athlete and have had that dream fall through. Or go to medical school despite the fact they can’t get through Into to Chemistry. Or marry the love of their life only to be discarded over spring break.
If we fixate on the closed door all we see is what we can’t have. We only see what was lost or how we are not good enough or how we have failed.
Here’s a bit of wisdom from Parker…
Look at the life you were ignoring while you focused on that closed door.
When a door closes the world opens up and you come closer to understanding the nature of who you are.
So while it stings..and it really does feel terrible..and it outright SUCKS to not get what we think we want consider this…
Now you can refocus on figuring out the most important thing of all.
Who are you really?
(Note: This article was originally published at http://www.catharinecraig.com/)
About the Author
Catharine Craig is a secret weapon to the successful (aka: Professional Resume Writer and Vocational Counselor). She is a certified professional resume writer affiliated with the National Resume Writers’ Association. She is known for the seminars and workshops she provides to university students, and for her genuine desire to assist others in finding their bliss. You can reach her via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org
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