Home | Human Flourishing | Psychology of Wellness | Life Trajectories
BY: T. Franklin Murphy | January 2019 (edited January 5, 2022)
Don't be discouraged. Change is difficult. We can move forward, progressing with small steps, letting consistency bless our futures.
Today I can’t be all I want to be. Tomorrow I’ll be much the same as today. Magical transformations are productions of Disney. We are charmed by these enchanting stories of change. The addict becoming a CEO; the underdog makes the team; the cheater becomes committed. Sometimes abrupt reversals happen—but not typically. Usually, the powers pushing behavior remain, and the flaws continue to haunt our lives. Life saving changes require arduous and patient work.
"You don't make progress by standing on the sidelines, whimpering and complaining. You make progress by implementing ideas."
We can take positive steps towards ideals, moving forward with tiny steps. We are relentlessly pushed by society to achieve more, compete, to win. We hear the echoes of “greed is good” emanating from the walls of the White House and the chambers of congress. Perhaps, this foolhardy doctrine is behind the constant waves of anxiety spreading across modern society and pounding our individual shores, eroding the peace of being—where the vast majority of us exist.
What is Personal Progression?
We move forward or slide backwards. Life is dynamic and standing still is not an option. Personal progression is a purposeful journey of growth. A life long commitment to honest assessing of skills and talents, setting goals, and obtaining dreams. Progression is fueled by hope and harnessed by knowledge.
"Usually, the powers pushing behavior remain, and the flaws continue to haunt our lives."
We Measure Our Own Personal Progress
We need to progress, not joyfully stewing in the same slop of yester year. However, our progress shouldn't be forced, conforming to what others think we should be. We can move forward towards our own goals at our own pace, slowing changing the trajectories of our lives, becoming something more.
Take a deep breath; be kind and compassionate; growth will come.
"If you're walking down the right path and you're willing to keep walking, eventually you'll make progress."
The Joy of Progression
We must slow down. Enjoy the moment without being overwhelmed by dissatisfaction with normalcy. Greatness begins in the moment, not through obliterating others in our charge to the top. Self-improvement, the simple steps of growth, are subtle. A little more awareness, compassion and kindness.
We gather scraps of knowledge along the path instead of blindly following the crowd. We don’t have to be sucked into the chaos. We can find our own pace, our own direction, and still succeed. We don’t run headlong into the crowd and get trampled; but we don’t blindly march.
Over a month, a year, and a decade, the steps accumulate into yards, miles, and continents. To endure the slow and difficult journey, we must find joy in the present, finding joy in the small steps of change—the journey then becomes the reward.
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