The Art of Appreciating
As we enter the last month of this year and its time to say goodbye to this year and get ready to welcome new year. Most of us have habit of looking back at the important happenings and experiences gained in this year.
Time is a great teacher as well as a great healer too. Life is not always bringing pleasant and happy moments. Sometimes there are incidents and experiences that brings bitterness. That’s why someone said, ” Life is not a cake walk” or” bed of roses.” Rather sometimes a single negative incident or person is enough to shatter your faith and trust in your relationships, own judgement and life itself.
I have seen people loosing hope and cribbing over past. Life doesn’t move the way we want. When things are happening according to our design we feel on top of the world , but when it’s not like the way we want, we start feeling frustrated. The common reason for frustration is comparing our goals, success and lives with other’s lives. Instead of putting all the focus on self growth and finding out our own unique abilities and talents, we focus on other’s abilities and talents.
The responsibility of this major drawback not only lies with us but also with our parents and families. I don’t know why we give so much importance to people who are more observing and critical in nature. Here I’m not using the words “observing ” and ” critical” in a broader sense. As the broader sense and meaning of these two words is very deep and positive.
Here I’m referring to the people who don’t let go of a single chance to minutely observe the negative points of others and then criticise them to the extent of harming their self esteem. They feel themselves to be great and very learned because nobody can win an argument with them.They feel they are special as what they can observe, nobody can observe. They have forgotten the simple notions of nature.
Nature’s whole expansion is full of minute observations, critical application and discrimination. Here the word “discrimination ” is highly positive. For example, look at two masterpieces of nature – a rose flower and a marigold flower. If someone has the quality of observation in positive sense; he can observe the difference between the both. He can discriminate both flowers’ differences on the basis of colour, shape of petals, textures and even fragrance. He can critically appreciate the beauty of both flowers and come to the conclusion that both flowers are really masterpiece of nature. Both are beautiful in their own sense and both have their own unique place in nature. Neither flower is greater than other nor lesser than the other.
As children, we are brought up with negative discrimination and negative comparison. There is a fixed parameter of being good and successful. If you are not doing as good in class, you will be compared with your siblings or cousin who gets A+ marks and trophies in debate competition. You will be considered successful only if you have earned a specific figure in money or a government post having good power attached to this. We have forgotten that if someone is honest and practicing integrity in relationships, this is also something to be appreciated and quoted. If someone is taking extra responsibility for society this is also a unique quality.
Life is bringing so many beautiful and magical moments to us but we are not enjoying them. We are focused on some so-called goals and missing the day to day mundane life. We are so busy in running and conquering the race of life that we hardly notice and enjoy, someone passed smile on the road while you crossed him, kids giggling at stupid senseless jokes, first rain shower of the season, new bud turning into big flower in your garden…and so on. Instead we don’t realise the fact that even if we win the rat race, we still will be rather.
Life is here and now. The only way to enjoy life is to change our outlook towards life… So , start appreciating the small pleasures and successes in life. It’s your outlook you criticise the half empty glass or appreciate the half full glass? In a similar manner, we can encourage our children to discover their own unique abilities instead of comparing them with other siblings or kids. This time when you ponder upon important events of your life start counting on the positive no matter big or small. Just practice it for few days and experience the magic of simple joys in life.
Learn the art of appreciation and enter the New Year with new energy.