First, that the world is both incredibly large and impossibly small. It’s not until you step out of your comfort zone and tread through unfamiliar territory that you truly begin to realise this. Home is comfortable, but there’s comfort to be found in other places too. There’s comfort in foreign coffee shops, in a strangers half-smile – in a sunny park on the other side of the world. Above everything, there’s comfort in going somewhere new and opening yourself up to everything that life can throw at you. Go and get lost for a while. You’ll be surprised by what you end up finding along the way.
Second, that life is difficult for a reason. It’s not meant to be easy. It’s hard to acknowledge that this passage through life isn’t simple. Your path rarely goes in a straight line, and the rough patches will most likely outnumber the smoother ones. It’s important to be okay with this. The quicker you begin to realise that the struggle is what builds us, what shapes us, the better prepared you’ll be to tackle life head-on. To turn the bad back around to good. To face it head on and to own it.
Third, that there is beauty everywhere you look. It can be so easy to lose faith in this world; in the people that populate it. Death and destruction fill the pages of the daily papers. Compassion and empathy for the plight of the other seem to be rapidly disappearing. Never lose hope that moments of light can emerge from the darkness. There is good to be found in a lot of surprising places. Sometimes you just need to open your eyes a little wider.
And last, that everything is survivable. That darkness that is always lurking will end up forging the building blocks you’ll construct your life on. Nothing keeps you reaching for the sky more than knowing what it feels like to be facedown in the mud. It can be so easy to get swept up by the currents of a day-to-day life. So easy to let things slip past you, to let life start dragging. Never settle for this. Remember that good times have come, and remember that they will come again. Take a good memory. Hold it in your head. Remember the way you felt then and reach for it. Never stop reaching.
Four fundamental truths. That the world is both incredibly large and impossibly small. That life is difficult for a reason. That there is beauty everywhere you look and that everything is survivable. Too long, didn’t read? You might not know exactly where you’re going, but rest assured knowing that you’re on your way. Wherever you’re going, you’ll get there.