The three teachers in life

Advices – they’re everywhere. There are tsunamis of books being published, blogs being created and courses being offered today. But if so, why still I’m struggling to find my own way to the destination I long for? That idea caught me right away when I was reading about the information fire hyndrant I am absorbing everyday, till one day, I’d better call my self the pages flipper.

Basically, I sat on the desk, flipping pages and pages to search for the answers of some questions that have been bothering me for a while. Some other time, I went out and talk to people. By that time, little did I know why it didn’t work out the way I wanted: I still haven’t figured out what I wanted to know.

Truth is, reading, thinking, pondering, etc. can never satisfy my thirst for the answer. And it will never do.

But action does.

Reading about riding bicycle doesn’t enable you to actually drive a bicycle.
Listening to post cads about quitting smoking isn’t equal to really dumb your cigarette away.
Watching ‘The Voice’ doesn’t transform you into great artist.
Pinting stacks of breath-taking photos of fancy places doesn’t get you any further than your Virtual Screen Board. (Well, Pinterest is great, but I’m not intended to pile up my photo folders that way, thanks :)), anyway, that’s another story).

But after all, we love to talk about “our dreams”, because it sounds noble. But I no longer buy flattering big words in my life. You may receive a pat in the back from people who accidentally catch your speech, but then what will happen afterwards? Nothing.

Yesterday, my boss talked to me about 3 teachers in life, whenever I want to make any important decision. He insisted that I keep looking for these 3 teachers, and only make decisions when I have gained all three perspectives.

1. The person who succeeded

Conspicuous as it sounds.  Wanna-be successful people look for advice in successful people.  The person who succeeded will clearly walk you through the shiniest moments, the most hyper feelings, the rosy side of success.

And ultimately, the second teacher shows up.

2. The person who failed

Helpful enough, the person who failed will show you all bitterness of failure, all pains of getting rejected, all frustration of being ignored, so that later on, you’re already prepared to face failure when it shows up.  You could only overcome failure once you were aware of it, my boss said.

3. The person who paid

Notice how I use the Past tense in all my 3 statements? Because all you need is to learn from someone that Already took actions and got feedback, however harsh it may be. The person who paid for what you offered has reasons to do that. Or in some cases, you might be looking for the person who supports the project. It’s your responsibility to figure out what’s beneath the surface.

Since then, I’ve always kept in mind the urge to take actions. Thinking doesn’t define you, but actions do. At that moment, I experienced a sudden burst of clarity. The state of limitlessness swept me by. The deal is sealed. That process saves me from being dragged down by my emotional blackmails. The 3 teachers help me to fend off the big project syndrome. Yes, life is the most tremendous project you can ever take on.

I started small. Very small. But that small step has never made me that happier, as I knew I did start something. Anything. With the mere joy of watching it grow. Consume less, and create more.

The moment I decided to go all in, everything started falling into places. When the student is ready, the teachers will appear.

Photo credit: Zen proverb




Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *