By Aliker David Martin
September 11th, 2011
I am lying on my bed with my headphones on, listening to Boyence’s song broken hearted girl. My phone rings and I get excited to receive a call from my long lost friend. We last met 5 years ago. She called to inform me this time she is getting married for real. The last time we talked, she had called to cancel my commitment, as a master of ceremony in her marriage and that she was heart broken. Her fiancée then, changed his mind at the last minute. My question was, “How did you get over the rejection?” She shared with me three great ideas that I will share with you on getting back your happiness.
Rejection is a very painful experience in life. It brings self-doubt; a feeling of betrayal; and thoughts of vengeance. Mary (not real name) shared with me, that she feels so lucky she was rejected then because she would not have been lucky to have the man in her life today. She looks back and thanks God for his wonderful guidance. Sometimes when you lose you feel you have lost every thing. Yet the reality is that if you could find that which you have lost you can even find better. In Mary’s wisdom, “look for the lessons in the stale relationship and pick the gift in it”. She adds that,” normally there is a tendency to look for who to blame instead of taking own responsibility for the broken relationship”. Most of those who successfully get over rejection desist from blame, and believe that the universe is out there to support them. Nothing happens without a reason; whatever is happening has a gift or a lesson in it for them.
The last time we talked with Mary, she was full of anger and promised so much vengeance, but now she sounds in high spirits and less conscious of the feeling of betrayal. When I brought this to her notice, she said, “My faith helped me to get over the strong feeling of vengeance. It’s important in our lives to identify the signs that tell you, its time to bury the hatchet. I learnt to define myself by not how hurt I am but by being able to find compassion and understanding in the face of a perceived adversity”. To forgive is a very difficult task for the broken hearted. However, forgiving some one does not mean that you condone betrayal; it does not mean you have forgotten; and it does not mean you are minimizing the severity of a problem. Forgiving is more about the forgiver than the person being forgiven. Forgiving frees you from the negative mental imprisonment that entraps you when you can’t let go off past misdeed.
Mary’s final counsel is that, in life one has to be able to see the silver lining in every tragedy of life. She compares difficult moments with clouds in a rainy season. “If one focused on clouds and paid attention to whether there was any blue in the gaps, it’s a signal that the rain; if it did come would not last forever”. This hit me really hard and I remembered Winston Churchill’s words,” a pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees an opportunity in every difficulty”. So move on with your precious gift of life because great opportunities lie ahead of you.
Our telephone conversation ended but her words kept with me on how I should look at life. I will and do hope you will look at life more positively and feel emotionally stronger in the face of rejection at work; amidst friends and in pursuit of life’s goals. I hope the three most important words today are: Optimism, Forgiveness, and Lessons in Life.
NB: Feel free to mail me what you want me to write about on Happiness.