Keep going ahead. Choose your battles wisely. Not everything deserves your time and attention.
People know your name, not your story. They have heard what you have done, but not what have been through. So take their opinions of you with a grain of salt. In the end, it is not what others think, it is what you think about yourself that counts uncountable. And if you limit your actions in life to things that nobody can possibly find fault with, you will not do much!
“You want to fly, you got to give up the shit that weighs you down” – Toni Morrison
When I think about the past, I feel it has nothing to do with me except the voice that reminds me of the importance of fulfilling my mission. Yet I have experienced difficulties that I do not regret and I think they helped me to become the person I am today. I found a warrior after years of training that might have forgotten the details of every event but learned how to strike when the time is right.
I will again quote an old short story to elaborate my point of view.
An elephant took bath in the river and was walking on the road. When it neared a bridge, it saw a pig fully soaked in mud coming from the opposite direction. The elephant quietly moved to one side, allowed the dirty pig to pass, and then continued its onward journey.
The unclean pig later spoke to its friends in arrogance, “See how big I am; even the elephant was afraid of me and moved to one side to let me pass”. On hearing this, some elephants questioned their friend and the reason for its action. Was it out of fear? The elephant smiled and replied, “I could have easily crushed the pig under my leg but I was clean and the pig was very dirty. Hence I moved aside.”
The story reveals: Realized souls will avoid contact with negativity not out of fear but out of a desire to keep away from impurity though they are strong enough to destroy the impurity.
You need not react to every opinion, every comment, or every situation. Kick the drama and keep going ahead. Choose your battles wisely. Not everything deserves your time and attention.
Be your own judge for not only the actions and outcomes you got from them but for the success in your life. The Nassim Nicholas Taleb defined success as “ For I have a single definition of success you look in the mirror every evening and wonder if you disappoint the person you were at 18, right before the age when people start getting corrupted by life. Let him or her be the only judge; not your reputation, not your wealth, not your standing in the community, not the decorations on your lapel. If you do not feel ashamed, you are successful. All other definitions of success are modern constructions; fragile modern constructions.”
Aisha Saeed is Advocate High Court, a Student of Law and former Lecturer at University of Karachi.