29 May 2016

When things are fine

Sometimes, things are fine just as they are. Sometimes we don't need to change anything to make things better, to get more out of life, to be happier. Sometimes we can go for weeks or months in a state that we really enjoy, and there's absolutely no reason to search out anything to make us feel better. These are the times when we should become better at what we do, when we should read more books that we love, when we should strengthen our relationships that may need that strength when things turn. And they will turn.

Life isn't always a trial. We're not always fighting battles that threaten to tear us apart. When we do reach the plateaus of comfort and plenty, though, it's important that we take advantage of them to focus on areas in which we can improve ourselves and our lives. We can read books about our career fields to try to improve the work that we do. We can take up a productive hobby that allows us to spark and exercise our creativity. We can get ourselves into better physical shape so that we're able to go on longer walks or hikes and get to know the world better. We can invite friends out for coffee or lunch so that we strengthen the relationships and get to know other people better.

Many of us put money away for rainy days, but what about putting it away for bright, sunny, cheerful days? We often plan for disaster, but how many of us plan for prosperity? Life is full of ups and downs, and we seem to spend an inordinate amount of time and energy thinking about and preparing for the downs. Let's plan for the ups--let's take advantage of the good times to make ourselves wiser or stronger or more compassionate while we're not really struggling. Many people take advantage of the lack of struggle to sit in front of the TV, watching shows or movies or playing video games.

But just as adversity should coax us into action in order to deal with the adversity, so should properity goad us into action in order to improve ourselves while we have the chance--and when we do so, the next time adversity shows up in our lives, we'll be stronger and more capable of dealing with it. Use your good times well.

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