The service minded and principled sales representative is spoken to harshly by his customer. Then his manager proceeds to reprimand him unjustly. The nurse is chastised by family members for not caring for their loved one properly in the hospital. Players and parents accuse the basketball coach of not treating players fairly. And so it goes. It seems all too often that life and circumstances are nothing more than a soap opera with one bad event after another.
Self-esteem suffers. The good thoughts and experiences are drowned out and cease to exist, but the bad scenes keep replaying themselves over and over again. It is so easy to think of the cost and the hurt that we have endured. Take time to think of the wisdom gained. Did you grasp something novel that you never knew before?
Primo Levi, an Italian-Jewish chemist and Holocaust survivor say, “More is learned from one’s failures than from one’s successes.” Primo went on to write several novels, articles, essays, and poems after having endured and survived eleven months in Auschwitz.
Failures cause money to be lost, the squandering of time, and friends or clients may no longer exist. Sure, that is sad, but did not these bad experiences if we were observant give us some clues on how to not let this happen again. Did we not learn something? Senator Bob Packwood talks about bad experiences too when he states, “Judgment comes from experience, and great judgment comes from bad experience.”
We can learn much from our “soap operas” of life. Instead of thinking of life as a soap opera maybe it is time to think of it as the great documentary film where one learns a lot about life and how to be successful.