14 lessons I wish I had known earlier in my life.

“What the caterpillar calls the end of the world, the master calls a butterfly”- Richard Bach

We’ve all been at the end of the world, and we’ve all emerged as butterflies.

It seems like ‘the end’ at least, where everything is hard, and there is no solution in sight.

Yet the caterpillar stage is a stage of rest, of preparation and when we’re ready, into the beautiful sky we fly.

So probably the most important thing I wish I had known earlier in life was not to be a struggling caterpillar, rather to be a joyous one; not to search so hard for solutions, rather what is important is having faith and just being.

It is hard and yet we emerge. Stronger, happier, wiser (hopefully wiser , atleast;-)  )

It is smart and useful to list our lessons then, so we may remember them and others may too ponder. This post was written as I was invited to be part of Life lesson series – Invitation to write about stuff that you wish you had known earlier in your life by self-improvement blogger  Abubakar Jamil . Thank you for the opportunity. It is humbling for a new blogger like me.

These are a few things I wish I had known earlier in life. Simple things. (sometimes the simple things are the most profound)

Have faith, worry not, work harder, don’t give up on stuff so easily, don’t try to find a solution for everything as things fall into place when they do.

But I didn’t know or rather I knew and didn’t really practise. And that’s another important lesson.

I’ve been always been inquisitive about life, always. I’ve looked at my high school seniors when I was about 5or 6 and thought ‘they have no clue’. I think I was talking about life. I have always been looking for ‘clues’,

I am a philosopher, a thinker. A seeker.

And the most important lesson, I wish I had known is this : That’s books, poetry, philosophy is all good in opening the mind to new horizons, even answering questions about life. Yet what stays, what truly matters is what we did from the heart, how we practised , actually practised and embodied all that we learnt, from books, from people, from experience –from life.

A list of 14  things I wish I had known and practised (earlier) in my life.

  1. Don’t worry so much. Everything is just as it should be and will always be so.
  2. Fear of failure is failure in itself. So try. Whatever may be the result, you will always know you tried.
  3. Build empowering friendships. It creates a place of learning, growth, support and positivity in your life.
  4. Have faith in yourself.
  5. We have the power of choice over our thoughts. Choose good thoughts. Always.
  6. List the things one is grateful for. It creates an instant shift to joy.
  7. There is such a thing as an ‘intellectual ego’ so be careful of being afflicted by it.
  8. Look at everyone with compassion for everyone has a story (even mean people, more so mean people actually).
  9. It is important to be whole, to be happy by ourselves. Happiness is within, completion is being at peace with ourselves. We cannot look for it outside. No person, job, or title can give this to us.
  10. People remember you for what you gave,how you helped and shared.
  11. Thinking too much is a serious problem. Stop
  12. Meditate more often
  13. Remember that God’s Grace is always with us. Always.

14. Finally, smile.

Doing such an exercise is a deeply reflective and humbling process. One marvels at the wisdom in life.

Come a long way,

A long way to go.

It’s the Universe,

Where mysteries unfold.

I hope the learning keeps unfolding for the way ahead of us. More importantly I hope we can all learn and practise from heart and soul.

Do share the lessons you have learnt in your own life, lessons you wish you knew earlier in the comments sections below . Would love to learn along with you.



About Uzma

Welcome . This blog is a place of reflection ,a place of simple inspiration. A place where we share the simplicity and grandeur of life, as it teaches us, humbles us and leaves us full of gratitude. The journey is one of sheer Grace.
This entry was posted in Gratitude, Life lessons. Bookmark the permalink.

30 Responses to 14 lessons I wish I had known earlier in my life.

  1. Uzma, great lessons learnt and now passed on by you to all of us. I am indebted to you for sharing them with us in your lovely poetic style.

    Thank you for participating. 🙂

  2. uzma7 says:

    @Abubakar Jamil : Thank you for inviting me to be part of the series. Its a great endeavour. Eager to read the rest of the bloggers.

  3. Haider says:

    “Thinking too much is a serious problem”

    I should’ve added that to my list. Dammit!

    A great list, Uzma. Thank you for sharing!

  4. Dia says:

    Very nice post Uzma3. I like this “5.We have the power of choice over our thoughts. Choose good thoughts. Always” a lot. 🙂 Thanks for sharing

  5. uzma7 says:

    @Haider & @ Dia – Thank you . Glad u liked it.

  6. I think of how different my life would be if I was handed a gratitude book instead of a coloring book when I was a child. Not a bad idea, eh?

  7. uzma7 says:

    @ Tess . What a fantastic idea. I love it 🙂 Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving a comment. Read your blog. Hope to learn much from you.

  8. Walter says:

    “Have faith, worry not, work harder, don’t give up on stuff so easily, don’t try to find a solution for everything as things fall into place when they do.” This statement has been the guiding principle of my life. Oftentimes when I’m low and when faith and hope seems to abandon me, I have kept in my mind that everything will go in its proper place. All I need to do is to be still. 🙂

  9. uzma7 says:

    @ Walter. That is just perfect “All I need to do is to be still” . Absolutely. I recently read somewhere that we can do inner work and it helps but when we’re still , everything just finds its peace. Thank you so much for stopping by and leaving your very wise comment.

  10. mommymystic says:

    Lovely list! I didn’t know you had started blogging, how wonderful. This was a great post. There’s been so many great lists coming out of this project. And yet, there is a part of me saying “we can’t know it any earlier than we know it, it’s a process, and the process is the joy, even with the struggles.” Do you know what I mean? We don’t ‘know’ something unless we first don’t know it, so it isn’t really possible, or even desirable, to know some things earlier. It’s all about the discovery.

    Quibbling perhaps, which is not what I meant to do, because I actually love every item on your list!
    – Lisa

    • uzma7 says:

      Dear Lisa, So so good to see you here. I just ‘had’ to start blogging. So I did 🙂 I agree with what u have to say, i love it actually, especially the ‘process is the joy’ bit. I suppose its a sort of wish list for the part, light for the future :-). Thank u so much for your kind words and for being part of this journey that I’ve started.

  11. Pingback: Life Lessons Series

  12. Found you via Abubakar’s site & especially love #9 and # 11 – it’s taken me a long time to get there and sometimes I forget and fall back into the old patterns – constant awareness is the name of the game. Great list Uzma! Tia

    • uzma7 says:

      @ Tia. Hi. Great to see you here. Yup, constant awareness is the name of the game,nay I’ve been told its the entire game itself. Tough one but working at it. Glad you liked the list 🙂 Thank you for stopping by and leaving your thoughts. Much appreciated.

  13. Uzma,

    I found your blog from Abubaker’s blog, this list is from heart I can tell and so humble. I like your quote also at the beginning of the post about becoming a butterfly. You seem to sure have!

  14. uzma7 says:

    @ Zengirl. Thank you so much for your kind words. We’re all, constantly undergoing the process of transformation, aren’t we. Every moment in the learning process is beautiful.

  15. Lance says:

    Wonderful list. And this concept of “worry”…one that it’s always good for me to have reinforced. Thank you!

  16. Uzma,

    Good post.

    #11 is the best. Thinking too much is really a serious problem if it does not convert to execution.


  17. Hi Uzma,
    Thank you for sharing your list. ( so glad I didn’t read it before writing mine or I may never have started!)
    I’m a very visual person and love the concept of the catterpillar. If only we could all believe we were destined to become a beautiful butterfly we could live without fear of failure and let our destiny unfold, thereby becoming the beautiful paople we are destined to become. Thank you for sharing.
    Warmest wishes

    • uzma7 says:

      Dear Sara, Thank u for your kind words. We all have the beauty of butterflies within us. I think we don’t focus on the good on us and worry too much about the bad, so my effort is on focussing on the good, on the joy. The fear tends to loose some of its hold then. Thank u so much for stopping by. Heading over to read your list. Am sure its awesome 🙂

  18. Farnoosh says:

    Dear Uzma, this was sweet – I am working with Abubakar on our Life Lessons series ebook and it will be a pleasure to use some of these beautiful thoughts you have put here…..Questioning everything has been a burdensome part of my life too but I am finally learning to let go and just let things be! Thank you!

    • uzma7 says:

      @ Farnoosh. Thank you for stopping by. Abubakar is a good friend and it really is a wonderful project that you’ll have. It is my pleasure and honour to be part of the series.

      Yup, questioning is hard, and I do learn from asking for meaning to events, to life itself , but sometimes we need to just relax and let the universe unfold as it is meant to.

      God bless !

  19. Hi Uzma

    I’ve just come across your post as I have also been asked by Abubakar Jamil to contribute to the life lessons series. I love your style of writing…I am also a freelance writer and journalist…you have such a beautiful way with words and your words are beautiful too. Great to meet you here.
    Warmest wishes

  20. verysmall says:

    Great list, I thoroughly enjoyed reading this post 🙂

  21. Rajgopal Ramdas Nair says:

    Hi Uzma,
    Your articles have been very inspiring , specially the one – ” Mastery ,discipline hallmarks of success”
    Good work.

  22. Hi Uzma! Assalamualaikum from Dubai! I loved reading this piece. I loved the caterpillar and butterfly metaphor. Life seems to end, and then it begins again. And yet, butterflies have a very short life but they live it to the full, so I’ve always associated them with both the transience of life and immortality. Reminded me of Keats and his letters to Fanny Brawne, he once said ‘“I almost wish we were butterflies and liv’d but three summer days – three such days with you I could fill with more delight than fifty common years could ever contain.”

    And as to the rest of what you said,
    “Do you not see how necessary a world of pains and troubles is to school an intelligence and make it a soul?”
    ― John Keats

    Keep in touch 🙂

  23. Uzma says:

    @Barira. What a pleasant surprise ! So good to see you hear. Thank you for your kind words.

    The Keats lines, are so true and apt. We need darkness to appreciate the sparkle of life. And how I wish too, that I had many days of delight. Just joyous prancing and letting the wind dance through me.
    You notice how both the Keats quotes are two sides of a coin. One is about delight for three days and the other on knowing pain. So dark and light, make up our lives. Celebration and mourning ! Despair and romance. Good stuff. Thanks for the insights.

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