Friday, December 6, 2013

Lesson Learned: Recognize and Appreciate Blessings In Disguise


Photo by me

In anticipation of the end of the year, I'm doing a series of posts regarding the things I've learned this year. Some of them relate to writing, some of them are general life lessons.
 
This lesson goes hand in hand with the previous one: embrace chaos. I wrote earlier this week about some of the chaos in my life earlier this year and how I learned to embrace it in order to move beyond it.
Another thing I learned from dealing with that chaos, though, was how to recognize and appreciate a blessing in disguise.

I mentioned that I had been passed up for a promotion that I had truly thought I had earned. Well, truth be told, that promotion would have put my life on a course that I don’t want for myself.  It would have meant several years more of working in retail, if not an entire career in that field, when I now know that this is not what I want. 

The blessing in disguise here was that I learned that I enjoy training and teaching others while I was training for the promotion. This led me to realize that rather than trying to grow a career in retail, I would do better to get a teaching license. I decided to combine my love of literature and my love of teaching into a career.  It would have taken me much longer to come to this realization without the opportunity to compete for that promotion.

I went through a big breakup this year too which was part of the reason why I ended up moving. The Walden-style vacation I took in the woods this summer started out as more of a necessity than anything else – I didn’t really have anywhere else to go.

The blessing in disguise here was the opportunity to go on vacation when things fell completely apart. I needed to leave the situation that I was in, and thankfully my family was able to offer me a solution to the problem. Rather than stay where I was, I was able to move to a place I love. Though breakups are never fun, this one turned out to be a blessing in disguise because it gave me an excuse to finally leave the awful situation that I was in and realign my life with my values.
 
Everything that I went through this year that felt like a disaster turned out to be a learning experience. I had so many opportunities to recognize blessings in disguise and I’m so thankful that I went through these things this year. I’m still hoping for 2014 to be a better year, but I also appreciate what I learned in 2013.

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