This takes me back to an existential lecture I attended at University when I was about 19. Not much of what I learned back then about Descartes stayed with me, but a few years later I realised it wasn’t supposed to. Until something happens and you connect the dots.
Night and day
I remember hearing that night doesn’t exist without day. Light without darkness, joy without pain. Beautiful things come out of the ugly. We wouldn’t be able to recognise them without knowing the dark side already. Many of our great achievements as humanity have come out of our great mistakes. Most of our successful artists died starving. Wrong and right seem to swap sides sometimes.
The things you do when nobody is watching
The part of our work lives that makes us successful is the same part which is the most challenging. You don’t gain much experience in the good times. You look good, but you aren’t learning. You really become experienced the minute things start going wrong. Your relationships are not built with your clients when there is no test. We should learn to love challenge, appreciate the opportunity to respond in the best way you can, this is the chance to show your true colours. Much like the things you do when nobody is watching. They quietly make you who you are. Challenge is important, because it’s what you do at these times that makes you. Challenge defines you.
Hope and fear
If there is anything the last few weeks has shown, it is that beautiful things can come out of the darkness. The aftermath of the attacks in Paris and Lebanon brought fear, but they also brought hope, light, and a feeling of togetherness so strong, which only could rise up in the face of such wrong.
This blog is dedicated to those who are reading this knowing that challenge lies ahead. Personal, professional, anything. Remember that it will define you. Remember that beauty is only possible with the beast.