As you grow older, people around you start becoming more expecting and less forgiving. And you, you simply grow more demanding of yourself than ever before.
There was this game called the Dangerous Dave, way back in 1990s. I was very small back then, having no idea how to play it at all. So I took around ten minutes to finish the first level, that had no fire, no water pool that burns you alive or scary spiders shooting fire at you. Just this much:
Having finished it, I used to give away the controls to my dad, who played from the second level onwards as I sat watching him beat all those evil monsters and fire hurdles.
I’ll remind you once again, that around fifteen years ago, I could barely get past the first level.
Recently, I was playing another game, which revolved around almost the same kind of a theme (I had to help the cat catch butterflies while jumping over thorns and wagons filled with sand).
I suddenly realised how I have always, for some reason liked these boring “jumping the hurdle and catching a butterfly (or a gem)” kind of games. That’s when I remembered Dave. And that’s also how I searched for it on play store and “re-downloaded” it.
Yeah, I played it. Couldn’t make it past level 3!🤷♀️
Played it again. And again. Nope, not once did I not get burned by that fire shooting spiders.
And suddenly, this one time, I make it past level 3. Level 4 follows, and I make it past that too. Level 5, nah! Not much luck.
Played several times again. And this one time, I finally made it past level 5. Level 6👍. Level 7👍. And we are doomed in level 8🤦♀️.
But the fact that I had actually reached level 8 was too exciting. Played again. Died in level 3. Didn’t play again for the rest of the day.
Okay, I tried the next day. Not like I was going to give up on it that easily, but no matter how hard I tried, even after saving all my lives, I ended up getting killed in level 5. Every single time.
I was slightly fretting now, probably on a microscopic level. But still fretting. I forgot how I couldn’t finish more than one level when I was a tiny toddler and it was still okay. I forgot how excited I was, having got to play Dave once again. And I also forgot that I had actually felt happy just by getting past level 3.
That’s what we do with our lives isn’t it? Never appreciate ourselves for surviving the little obstacles but keep condemning and criticising our inability to get over a bigger, vividly visible mountain. Because that’s what the others see too. Sometimes people rarely see beyond your flaws, and you end up thinking that it only rains wherever you go and whatever you do. If you don’t give a few words of encouragement to yourself for beating a smaller hurdle, then you’ll simply have no self-confidence left to face the bigger monster and definitely fail.
There was this quote I found in quora a few weeks ago, that sums up my post quite well.
Sometimes you just got to stop fretting about things that seems out of reach at the moment and simply feel happy and grateful about how you have managed to make it so far, despite all those hurdles and fire shooting spiders.