Live only by these three words.
By Rasha Abou Dargham
I started last year with the idea that we need to fight for what we want. And fight I did. For everything. It’s a strenuous way to go about life. It’s consuming and depleting and it takes away from our awareness of what’s meant for us and what simply isn’t. Fighting for everything leaves us thinking that nothing is ever going to come to us effortlessly. While it’s important to push ourselves to get some of the things we want in life, it’s also equally important to learn to pick our battles.
Not all friendships are meant to live on, not all relationships are worth the compromise, not all hobbies are made for us, and not all mentors are expected to be idols.
Convincing ourselves that we always need to make the extra effort, take the extra step and put in the extra work leaves no extra for us. We reach a point where people who aren’t supposed to be there are still there because we clung to a dying connection, and we wasted much energy doing things that we could’ve redirected to something that matters more to us.
If 2018 came with guidelines, then they were incomplete and it took a year to see the other side.
If I had to take away anything from the first part of this year, it would be not to put too pressure to battle through. More flow, less fight. And the three words I choose to live by as we welcome the end of 2019:
Please Don’t Settle.
Yes sure, we’ll still fight for all we think is important and worthy but we’re not settling for anything that doesn’t deserve our energy or time.
If the conversation isn’t stimulating,
If the music doesn’t fit the moment,
If the date isn’t going well,
If the book isn’t captivating,
If the city is too dull,
If the work is not fruitful,
If the love isn’t there,
Please don’t settle.
The trivial things, the important things, and the life-changing things.
Don’t settle for anything that isn’t good enough for you.
There’s absolutely no reason to do so.
If I must choose one way to face the rest of 2019, it’ll be with a zero-tolerance for mediocracy.
When we spend a year convincing ourselves that we are fighting and that’s the only way we can pave way for better things, then we should think again.
We’ve masked our comfort zone, we’ve masked settling down with a veil of fighting.
Is the conversation not stimulating enough? End it.
Is the music not suitable enough? Change it.
If the date is not going well. Leave.
Is the book not captivating? Grab another one.
Is the city too dull? Pack up and experience a new one.
Is the work not fruitful? Speak up.
If the love is not there? Get out.
We deserve more than okay, fair, and good enough.
We’re made for great, unexpected, and extraordinary.
It’s no one and nothing’s fault that things don’t happen to us but ours.
Because this is what it means to live by these three words:
It means waking up every morning and deciding that today you’re not settling for anything less than you deserve. Every morning until it becomes a lifestyle. A lifestyle that you pass on to whoever you share life with. A lifestyle that is contagious and courageous.
Because fighting to settle is walking into a battle with a white flag. The true fight comes with this simple decision: please don’t settle.
My name is Rasha, and I’ve been keeping and shredding diaries since I was 7 years old. I’m hoping that this low-maintenance, digital diary goes beyond just words on pages hidden under my mattress to reach at least one person and touch them in some way. Please expect spelling and grammar mistakes as I have a fear of re-reading anything I write. Whatever you see is most probably drafted at 2 am, in my bed and in one impulsive writing spree.
The time gaps between posts are simply a reflection of my constant struggle with the writer’s block disease. As you read please reflect deeply about your internal thoughts as well because what I write is simply the fruit of long overthinking sessions about (what I suppose are) common life experiences.