Opinions: Rising from the ashes
By: Atlanta Northcutt -- Journalist for the Southern Standard
“When something bad happens, you have three choices. You can either let it define you, let it destroy you, or you can let it strengthen you.” - Dr. Seuss
Bad things happen or have happened to everyone at some point. The world isn’t always a gentle, happy place. It’s not always sunshine and roses. An example of such is what’s happening in our society right now, along with the daily suffering of all people due to certain circumstances.
It’s not easy being human. Humans have such complex emotions, such as anxiety, sadness, anger, confusion and a plethora of other feelings, not just at this current time, but throughout their entire existence. Everyone has made mistakes, whether small or large, and no one is perfect.
Some mistakes are small, but some mistakes are life-changing. Those which alter your existence, open your eyes and transform your thinking will either change you for the better or the worse. The choice is up to you and you alone.
After a fall from grace, a decision must be made to either lie down and give up or take what was learned from the situation to open your eyes and empower you to ascend to being a stronger and better person.
To rise like a phoenix from the ashes means to emerge from a catastrophe stronger, smarter and more powerful. The phoenix bird comes from Greek mythology, and goes back thousands of years.
There are lessons to be learned from what took place, and it is up to the individual to use those lessons to change their lives for the better and be like the phoenix rising stronger from their mistakes.
If the behavior which led to making a catastrophic decision doesn’t change, then that same mistake will surely happen again. The only other options, as Dr. Seuss said, is “to let it define or destroy you.” In my opinion, what a terrible waste it is to take such an experience and allow it to drive you further into darkness and despair.
Mistakes happen, and they happen to us all. What matters most are the actions taken next. Confronting, accepting, taking responsibility, learning from the situation, not dwelling on the past or letting it define you and finding the ability to forgive yourself must be used to move forward.
Looking to the future and pushing onward is the only way to change and become stronger. Take the experience to ignite a new fire inside and use it to motivate you to run after your goals fearlessly and take you to the places that were previously only dreamed of.
The only hope is to find a positive in the mistake and let it fuel your drive to do so much more with your life, work to leave behind the legacy you desire, realize what’s important and not take one single moment for granted.
"Mistakes are a part of being human. Appreciate your mistakes for what they are: precious life lessons that can only be learned the hard way.” - Al Franken
Standard reporter Atlanta Northcutt can be reached at 473-2191.