We’ve all heard the phrase “sh*t happens.” It’s used as a blanket term to say, well what can you do? That’s life, right? At the end of college, a friend of mine and I modified that term to say “life happens,” and then we were like, “it’s a bumpy ride, kinda need a helmet.”
We made t-shirts to commemorate our creativity and wisdom.
Such is the life of a 21-year-old.
Now, with the actual wisdom I’ve accumulated 14 years later, I’d like to dissect this phrase a little bit more.
Pretty self-explanatory. No matter what your intentions or how well-laid your plans are, life happens. In other words, things happen that you didn’t want, didn’t plan for, and don’t know how to react to, and at the time everything feels like a disaster.
A prime example of this: my mother got sick a couple of years ago. At the same time, my dating life and work life fell apart, and some of my newfound friendships at the time proved to be toxic. No part of my life was left unturned.
However, no matter how bad it was back then or how bad I felt, my experiences are by no means unique. Life happens to all of us.
Life doesn’t care what you’ve planned for sometimes. Sometimes you have to understand that everything happens for a reason. The good, the bad, the happy, the sad (I feel like that’s a song..). You have to roll with the punches and handle it.
Funny thing about life: when you think you’ve resolved one issue and can settle down again, another one will smack you in the face. I’ve noticed that as I’ve gotten older, this happens more frequently. The number of responsibilities and stress all increase, and at the same time, the number of things that can go wrong also goes up.
Get a Helmet
We have no control over what happens to us. All we can control are our reactions.
So, as my saying goes, get a helmet…or your version of it, be it body armor, a sword, or a shield.
In other words, do what you need to do to protect yourself from the haters, and shield yourself from judgment. Use your armor to prepare yourself for the badness, and understand that bad things happen to everyone. Wield your sword to keep blazing your path and to lead the way for others on their road to success.
Putting It Together
It can often feel like life keeps coming for you. The point is to embrace the suck and get into the mindset of taking things in stride. Life isn’t easy, and I don’t think it’s meant to be. Rather, its meant to teach us lessons so that we become the best version of ourselves that we can be and reach our full potential.
At the end of the day, all you can do is look for the lessons and silver linings and stay positive. Hope for the best, prepare for the worst, and know that what is meant for you will be.
Don’t get me wrong, none of this is easy, and I know that. I’m still looking for the meaning and the reason for some of the things I’ve dealt with. Sometimes the downs occur more often than the ups. But, you power through. Give yourself permission to stop thinking and worrying about things you can’t control.
Most importantly, don’t wait for things to “settle” or for your life to look like some fantasy you’ve imagined. Don’t waste time waiting to be happy, to live. Life is crazy, and life is short. No matter what is going on, we have to put on our helmets and gear and make the most of the time we do have so that we don’t wake up with regrets.