LIFE LESSONS: Picking Your Battles

By: Tanvi Maharaja


The human enterprise is replete with struggles and stresses of all kinds. These largely arise as the result of their natural antagonism to our own ideals of what is right and what is perfect. What I think my day should look like, or my work environment should be, or what my spouse should do, or how loud is too loud for the neighbors to be…
These ideas—my ideas—shape up my vision of what is right. It is not the very nature of these certain behaviors or actions that are right or wrong, it is merely how we choose to perceive it.
Which is why most of the aforementioned life struggles are self-generated. We cling too hard and too long to what we think is correct. Unfortunately, some of it is self-conceit. It is the self-generated pride in being right, stemming from a skewed self-worth.
And then there are matters of every day life that one sees are not ideal, but are they worth our time and effort? Does it really matter? And if it does, can it be done in a gentle, non-provoking manner? If the answer to all three questions is yes, go for it. If you get two or more nay’s, leave it alone, it will sort itself out. Conserve your energy for situations that impact somebody personally or humanity at large, and are not merely your reaction to your self-generated notion of an attack on your pride.
Everyday you get up, you will face this plethora of happenings that you are not fully content with. If you make it your mission to right every wrong, which is your concept of wrong, and which is not necessarily harming anyone, you create an environment of stress and negativity for yourself, and possibly for the people involved.
Don’t stress the small stuff, they say, because there is bigger stuff to stress about that you won’t be able to handle if you exhaust yourself here. Life is too short to expend on the trivial. Smile, laugh, forgive, hug, love, help, talk, and move on!

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