Some time ago, I went to the beach and learned something valuable that really stuck with me. I was knee deep in the water. The waves were rough. It was hard to stand in the water without getting knocked off my feet. In fact, I did at one point.
It was a little frightening because getting back up without getting dragged under by the boisterous waves was harder than I expected. Somehow, I regained my footing. I wanted to go deeper out but non-swimmer that I am, I didn’t dare with those waves threatening to knock me about.
That could have been the end of it. I could have thrown the towel in and gone home. For some reason, I stayed there struggling to keep my footing. Then I got knocked over again. I went under. I realized that I’d really be in trouble this time if I kept getting dragged under.
I managed to surface again but this time, I’d inhaled seawater. I was coughing. My lungs burned. My eyes smarted. I was frustrated at this point because the situation was really trying my patience.
Just then, as clear as day, an oddly grounding thought popped into my head:
The water is not your enemy. It is merely present.
Amazingly enough, keeping my footing was no longer a challenge after that. The waves that had been bullying me became irrelevant. I stood there, chest deep in the water and I was comfortable enough to appreciate the warmth and buoyancy of the water.
I’d just learned a wonderful life lesson. How cool it would be if I could approach all the challenges that life throws at me with the same sort of mentality?
Hardships are not my enemies. They are merely present.
Disclaimer: Nearly drowning isn’t fun so please don’t try this at home, kids. Always play in the sea with a lifeguard present. Better yet, learn to swim!