It is so oddly empowering to let go of the manic control that some of us try to have over every aspect of our lives. Of course, things won’t work in our favour unless we work for them, but controlling everything around us is clearly not the way to go about that.
I used to obsessively study Mandarin for my lessons because I wanted to stay on top of the scoreboard, and the competitive side of me went way overboard with it to a point where I stayed awake till 4AM, catching up to the highscore. It is so unhealthy. I don’t know why on earth I never noticed that part of myself before. But now, I’ve learnt to let loose and study for the sake of studying and not because I want to catch up to some high score. I had to remind myself that my progress is not going to mean less if I didn’t top the leaderboard like I used to.
Learning is still learning.
Another thing I used to do before was to dig out some topic or another, whether it was relevant or not, so that I could attempt to write about it. To put it simply, it felt forced and it didn’t feel right to me, as a writer, because how could taking a day or two off ever reduce my worth as a writer, at all? I know it probably sounds ridiculous, but these are things that people actually go through in their lives.
People find themselves in an obsessively unhealthy competition with people they’ve got nothing to do with just because they want to do better themselves. That’s where we tell ourselves that the competition we have is with ourselves and nobody else. Everybody else has their own roads to walk and their own mountain peaks to scale. Competing obsessively and trying to control the way you handle your own growth is certainly not the best way to go about it.
We shouldn’t let the things we are passionate about turn us into something that we are not. We shouldn’t let them affect us in adverse ways. We shouldn’t let them take over our lives to a point where we can’t see past them anymore. It only comes from the acceptance that not everything is under our control and that sometimes, we need to just do our best and not blame ourselves for the things that aren’t our fault.
As for the rest, life goes on. We only need to focus on doing better than we did yesterday.