Your life is the way you Interpret it

Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

Imagine for a moment you were given a cheap chocolate/toy as a 7-year-old, how much would you have valued it?

  1. Overjoyed
  2. Neutral
  3. Disgust

That moment of experience is nothing but one small part of life.

For a poor refugee kid who had to flee his home just to barely survive, might see this as the happiest thing that happened since. Whereas a rich and well-pampered kid might look at the same with something not worthy compared with what he currently enjoys.

Each moment in life even as adults we are constantly making a comparison and interpreting it. This comparison can be another similar moment in your own life or worse even a memory of an advertisement/movie/so many brag videos you find online. Thus even if the event in life is the same, the person will have his interpretation. This then becomes a new memory that gets carried around and used to tell a story about your life. The sad part is we remember bad events more than the good ones.

At the same time, the good part is that you can always reinterpret that sad memory and compare it with something far worse and thus create a new meaning out of it. Thus every moment of sadness/failure can be made into something interesting.

The benefit though nothing in the past or the present moment has changed, your future self will have a much more interesting story to say.

Let’s see a small example from my own life. Since graduating, in the past 8 years, I had around different careers spanning from Ceramics, Interiors and Furniture Manufacturing, IoT Sales, Software Sales, Web designing, Project Management, Business Analytics … I can compare it with my peers who had good linear career trajectory and feel sad that I am yet to settle OR tell with renewed excitement that I had a great new adventure with each , instead of a monotonous one and yes I am again ready for a new one. This way of putting forth my story changes the future though nothing has changed in the past/present.

This method vastly differs from positive thinking or listening to motivational speeches. Positive thinking requires you to put more effort each time when you think thus eventually causing lot of mental fatigue.

Why not do a quick experiment to test this.

If I ask you to close your eyes and not to think about monkeys. I am sure the first thing that came to thought was about monkeys. Similarily the more you try not to think about negative thoughts the more you think about them ending up loosing precious mental energy in this very process.

When it comes to motivational speeches about people who failed and then became successful, you are left with a wish to get a magic moment similar to theirs that would propel you towards success. Also, the confidence boost that you get from them rarely stays for a longer time.

When it comes to reinterpreting your memory they are yours and hence they have an important meaning in your life.

Why wait? Go ahead and rewrite your story, make it so interesting and exciting that you are longer bogged down.

And always remember even if you continue to fail you can always come back and reinterpret that also.

Happy Reinterpreting!