By: Ke’Ana Lampkins
For as long as I can remember, I’ve always wanted to be one step ahead of life. When I was a young girl, I wanted to be a teenager and go to high school. After I made it to high school, I was anxious to leave to attend college. After I made it to college, I was ready to turn 21. And after I turned 21, I was ready to find my husband and be married. And after I was married, I wanted to have babies. And the list goes on and on and on.
We are always anxious for the next best thing. In every phase where I was anxiously awaiting something new, I always thought it would be better than where ever I was in the moment, that I would totally disregard it. If I was in middle school, I was actively hating it, and thinking life would be so much better if I were in high school. Then I made it to high school, and I thought the same for high school, and at the time even college. I remember being so ready to become an adult thinking the best thing in life would encompass more freedom, therefore making life more enjoyable. Now that I’m an adult I realize how much I took for granted being a child and having no responsibilities but to learn and to have fun. In retrospect, there were so many things I didn’t know yet and so many things I didn’t take the time to enjoy because I was always anxious for the next best thing.
How much time do we spend living in the moment versus the amount of time we spend wishing a moment away? I have spent so much of my life running to the next best thing. But there is so much good during the in-between phases and even in the things that we don’t want to experience. The lessons we learn in life aren’t typically from the situations where life went perfect. But they are from the times when things stretched us a bit.
It’s hard, especially when it’s a trying situation. It’s more natural to want the hard stuff to be over. But the reality is, there is always something to gain from the hard stuff. A lesson learned, or a character strength evolved. There is always something that comes from hard situations, whether we want the lesson or not.
There is always going to be something. There is always going to be a trying situation around the corner. Or something challenging that you will need to tackle. But how we go through them matters.
Don’t wish the time away, it’s going to pass anyway. Slow down and enjoy the moment, really enjoy it. The next best thing will come when it’s ready, it always does. Take time to enjoy the moment, even the difficult ones. Find something to be grateful for, look for the silver lining, and enjoy the ride.
Ke’Ana Lampkins is a contributing writer for The Pedestal Project, LLC. Ke’Ana is a Christian, wife, and mother dedicated to empowering young girls and women through counseling, mentorship, and education. Connect with her on Instagram @Beautifully_Yanni