There’s this idea in Eastern and Western philosophy that we must learn how to enjoy the present moment without getting distracted by the past or future.
Ever since the invention of words, the human race has been lost in thought. We are constantly thinking, stressing, worrying, and being preoccupied with a force that seems outside of our control.
That’s why many of us search for refuge in philosophies that promise us inner calm. Stoicism, Mindfulness, Zen—most of us use the teachings to escape our thoughts.
We keep on treating the symptoms by using meditation apps, reading comfortable books and articles, getting rid of our devices, and trying the next solution that promises peace from ourselves.
If you believe that only stupid people make mistakes, you’re as wrong as I was. The truth is that everyone makes mistakes. Smart people admit that. Stupid people do not.
What’s more, the smartest and most successful people in history have made the most mistakes. Are those two things connected? I think so. This Albert Einstein quote says it all:
“Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.”
I used to blame myself for making mistakes in life. I think that’s how our society is. As a kid, you’re punished for making mistakes in school and life. And because of that, we think it’s normal to punish each other as adults.
I don’t know about you, but I forget about 95% of the things I learn. No matter how much I read, journal, and process all the wisdom of life, I keep on forgetting the things that make life better.
At least, that’s what I assume. But that’s my own mind playing tricks on me. Even though it might seem like we forget, everything we read and practice has an impact on the way we live.
Ralph Waldo Emerson illustrated this point clearly when he said:
“I have forgotten the books I have read, and so I have the dinners I have eaten; but they both helped to make me.”
What you put in your brain influences your thoughts. And the quality of your thoughts influences the outcome of your life. That’s why I protect the gates to my brain as much as I can.