Supposedly – though nobody knows for sure – Mark Twain once remarked that whilst history doesn’t repeat itself, it does rhyme. And to be honest, I couldn’t give a shit who said it – whoever it was was one-hundred percent correct.
But whilst the quote is generally taken to be about world history, and the way human nature shapes the broad strokes of what we all into an eerily similar pattern from century to century, nobody ever seems to apply it on a personal level.
When things happen that mess up our plans, that throw us off balance, we tend to first resist them, second reluctantly accept them, and third be glad when they’re over. We want to put them out of our minds. We see them as freak occurences, as deviations from the norm – whatever that is. I think this is a big mistake.
Everything good or bad that has ever happened to you is going to happen again in some way or another. The specific details will be different in all kinds of ways, but the essence will be the same. Your personal history might not repeat itself, but it will rhyme.
You will get angry. You will get embarrassed. You will get impatient. You will have bad luck with money. You will feel envious of everybody who is better looking than you, or has bigger boobs than you, or whose kids are better behaved than yours.
The key, I think, is not to panic, but to be ready. Ready doesn’t mean paranoid, or living in terror of these unwanted happenings lurking around the corner. It simply means not being in denial about them.
If something happened once, it’s pretty stupid to bank on something similar never happening again. But guess what? You handled it before – you wouldn’t be reading this otherwise – and you’ll handle it again. I believe in you.