May 26, 2017 jasperdetaeye

The Inevitability of Adversity and Comfort

After blogging for nearly one year in Dutch, I have decided to continue blogging in English. While writing this blog post, I am in the plane to Amsterdam to return to my well-trusted Holland. Given the fact there is certainly room for improvement with respect to my English proficiency, a meeting I just had at the airport affirmed my decision to start writing these blog posts in English.

At the airport, I went to Butlers Chocolate to have a coffee and a well-deserved bonbon, while waiting ‘patiently’ for the boarding call to be announced. I was enjoying my cappuccino and my bonbon when two Latinas dropped their coffee and sweets next to me. In a genuine manner, a conversation occurred among others about our origin. Shortly, after the commonly searching start of a first meeting, one of the Latinas departed, exerted by a boarding call announced.

My flight wasn’t about to board for 2,5 hours and the other Latina her flight wasn’t about to board for 3.5 hours. Hence, the Latina and I continued chatting. Isabel was a very smart young woman that challenged me philosophy-wise. We started chatting among others about the tendency of humans to do whatever is possible to be accepted and the resulting danger to individuals and the society. We expressed our concern of so many people who aren’t content with themselves. Soon, I noticed that I had considerable difficulty in discussing this topic fluently. I had difficulty with formulating phrases properly regarding this subject. I just don’t have the vocabulary and the habit of speaking English on this level.

Hence, practicing my vocabulary by means of writing in English about these subjects could be beneficial for my verbal and written English proficiency, regarding these subjects. One year ago, I made quite a step out of my comfort zone discussing personal and philosophical subjects by means of a blog. Nowadays, blogging in Dutch feels natural and comfortable. So, it’s time to develop further and start blogging in the language of the country where I am living momentarily. The subject of this blog regards the positive peaks in life resulting in an invincible state, and how to cope with these states adequately.

Volatility of Life

In general, life can be considered completely volatile. There are moments in life full of adversity and discomfort. Luckily, there are even so moments in life full of joy and comfort. In life, we would love to skip those negative moments. Some even claim we should not allow these moments in our life. However, these moments are inevitable. I consider these moments even highly important and believe these moments should be experienced in a mindful fashion to learn more about ourselves.

On the other side, we have positive, joyful and comfortable moments in life. These moments, even so, should be experienced mindful and should be considered as a true present. However, we should not drown ourselves in the joy and comfort of these moments. It can become dangerous if we start to identify us with these upsides of life. In that case, you will set an unrealistic standard. In the end, things will always change and adversity will eventually bang on the door unexpectedly. If we obtain a lot appraisal on work or possess a healthy body, we can think we deserve this because we worked hard for this. However, circumstances can always change and adversity can come around the corner at any time. So no matter how hard you work and how well you structure your life, eventually you always hit a wall.

Personal Approach

To make this abstract gibberish a little bit more concrete, I would like to share a personal experience. At my current sales job, we are working on the base of quarterly revenue targets. Last quarter, I worked my ass off to obtain knowledge of the product, market, and role, to excel in this job. In April the new quarter started. I was able to speed up my performance and exceeded my target already halfway the quarter. In the office, this is received positively and they ventilate their appraisal repeatedly to me.

On the one side, I fully enjoy these compliments. I mentioned earlier that I worked my ass off to achieve this. Despite the fact, 100 variables next to my own effort affect the fact if you hit your target, I am proud exceeding my target. Hence, I felt completely happy and confident the last days. However, at the same time, I also tried not to drown in joy and comfort.

I tried to remind myself that results of the past aren’t a guarantee of future results. Of course while enjoying this achievement fully, I also have to keep investing in myself. I would like to keep adversity as long as possible behind the corner. At these moments, I always remind myself of one of my personal values; always stay ignorant. I always try to keep learning and evolving mentally, cognitively, spiritually and physically.

The Value of Adversity

It is key in life to accept volatility. Life isn’t a constant high. My room mate always recalls: ‘Enjoy adversity, because that means positivity is on his way’. Adversity is inevitable and should be experienced and accepted fully. Many, as well as me, benefit from meditation even so at these moments. It’s key to detect how adversity affects your mind and body. The next step is not to fight these feeling but accept their presence. You should allow your body and mind to even so feel these states when encountering adversity and recuperate eventually.

Joy and Positivity Mistimed

Adversity and joy are inevitable states every human being is going through. Once, I had a discussion with a friend about if those positive states can be mistimed. An interview with a Japanese writer clarified success can be mistimed. Near to his death, he was awarded the Nobel price of the literature. In the interview, he elaborated on the mistiming of this event. In his current state of life, trying to say goodbye to life constructively, he was not really in for all this media exposure. “Now I have to give interviews and readings while my health deteriorates by the day.”

It’s interesting how we cope with adversity and joyful moments. However, the question is, how do we experience, perceive and cope with these moments.

Every moment, every generation, every human being, every whatever has its own unique beauty on itself.



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