“No-body’s perfect” is a cliche we’re all familiar with. No matter how much we change our life, our thinking, our values, our beliefs, our commitments, what we love, who we love, people we help. We’re never perfect. Perfection this side of the grave is an impossible target.
However, being better is possible. Everybody can be better. All of the above could be improved: our thoughts, values, beliefs, commitments, our love and service of others.
Perhaps our biggest challenge is personal growth: to want to be better, to try to be better, to never give up on trying to be better.
Do we all give up too soon?
It seems to me that very many people give up too soon. Yes, they know they could be better in all sorts of ways. But they give up. “Enough’s enough”, they believe. They settle for much less than they could be. I bet you know some people like that.
Why do we do that? Great question! I’m sure there are as many answers as there are people. All we can do is look at a few common reasons for not doing more.
It seems to me that one reason is that we simply get tired of it all. Life’s challenging. We all have difficulties, problems, sickness, disappointments, betrayals, failures . . . the list goes on.
Just leave me alone, O.K.?
Maybe these problems can be so overwhelming that any talk of “ striving to be a better person” falls on deaf ears. “Just leave me alone in peace, I’m happy to settle for who I am at the moment.”
Even when we’re challenged by some inspirational person to do better, we may be unable to find the motivation.
What do you love most?
It all comes down to discovering what inspires you personally. What is your greatest passion in life? What do you love above all else? That is the best place to look for the motivation to keep on growing as a person.
Older and Wiser?
Age may have a lot to do with it. Our priorities keep on changing throughout life’s journey. I know that from my own lifelong experience, being well into the “third age.”
The most general way of describing this change, is a move from selfishness to other people.
It seems we grow spiritually over our lifetime. Material values tend to dominate our earlier life: finding a good job, finding a partner, making money for all our needs and wants. So much of this is about looking after number one. It’s natural and necessary.
Later on into middle age and beyond a lot of our values tend to evolve and change.
It’s not a black and white change of viewpoint. Rather it’s a gradual change that builds slowly and surely.
Stretching out to help others seems more important than it was. Our own material needs seem less important. In a word we grow into a more loving, giving, altruistic person.
Esther Dyson is right to stress that we want things to be better.
The love challenge
The older we get, hopefully, the more we want ourself to be better.
We’ll never be a perfect human being, but we can always keep growing, deepening our love and service of others.
After all, I believe, love is what it’s all about anyway.
P.S. What’s evolved in your life? Please share your story with us. Leave a comment below.