The things in life you can and cannot change


You are the hero of your own life story

I am going to start this post with a complaint. Something that frustrates me once in a while. It is the people who seem to think they have no control over their own lives. I really don’t understand people who say that they hope that this and this will happen or that they wish things will go a certain direction, without taking any action to make those things happen whatsoever. They are the people that say things just ‘happen’ to them, without ‘any reason’. They ask questions – usually out loud or post them in comments on the Internet – that say: ‘why does it always have to be me?’ and ‘why does this keep happening to me’.

Well, let me tell you..

< frustration peptalk >

Why wouldn’t it? If you don’t like how things are going, change them. Because seriously, there is no one else who is going to do it for you. You are the hero of your own life story! (love this quote). You are the only one who can change it. So get your ass from that couch and go do something with this one and only life you have. Make it something worth living for. Make it into something beautiful, I know you can!

< /frustration peptalk >

Now, to be honest, I used to think like this as well. Especially in highschool; I just had the feeling that life happened to me without having any influence on it. I had no idea how to change it to what I wanted it to be.

And you don’t always can. I know some things are impossible to change, because there are too many factors influencing it. The important thing is to know the difference between:

1. Things you can change
2. Things you cannot change

Things you can change

People tend to think that there are a lot of things they cannot change. But first look at the things you cán change and how they can influence your life! If you hate your job, you can quit. If you want to travel, you can book a plane ticket. If you want to have new friends, you can get yourself ‘out there’ and go to spots to meet new people. I know it is not always as easy as I just put it here, but I know tons of people who say they don’t like their jobs/house/study/friends/etc., have no obligations whatsoever (like kids to take care of or a mortgage) and still keep on doing what they always do, without trying to take responsibility of their own lives and change it.

I used to do it as well (and I might still do it from time to time). For years I said to myself I wanted to travel, study abroad and see the world, but it took until I was almost 20 to actually get that internship abroad and do it. Before that, I spend years dreaming and not acting at all. But you have so many possibilities.

If you really want something, and you know that with some effort you are able to get this thing in your life, go for it! Put yourself outside your comfort zone to make it happen.

Especially if you are born in a western country, you have so many possibilities! E.g. as a European, you can travel, work and life in the whole EU without any visa requirements. You know how many people dream of doing that? You can study in several EU countries for free (sorry American people). You don’t have to worry about medical care, healthy water and natural disasters as much as people in developing countries. Basically, the whole world is open for you! And even if you are not born in a western country, with the development of Internet so many opportunities are rising and chances to improve your life increase every day. Sometimes it will require a bit more creativity, but just take those chances that are available and see what you can make from your life!

You are the hero of your own life story

Things you cannot change

The things you can’t change are a bit more difficult. Like, you can’t change where you were born, how the color of your skin looks like, how your friends spend their money or how your body naturally looks.

What is important to know is the difference between the things you can and cannot change. If you cannot change something, it is still possible to change your own attitude towards that something. Like, accepting the fact that you were born in a certain country with certain cultural norms and be proud to be different, instead of complaining about all that is wrong with your country. You cannot change your own skin color (unless you name is Mikael Jackson), but you can change how you approach the pro’s and con’s that come with that skin. You can decide to make other friends or not go out that much instead of complaining all the time about that you don’t have money, while your friends do. You can decide to love your body no matter how its natural shape looks like instead of using a lifetime of diets and fitness to try to change it (of course this will help a bit, but most parts of your body will stay the same).

Changing your perspective on certain things can be difficult and you don’t always see it or know how to. Sometimes you really want things to change, but it’s not possible. However, understanding what you can and cannot change helps a lot to begin with.

Accept the things you can’t change, have the courage to change the things which you can and have the wisdom to know the difference.

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