Hi everyone.. How are you? How's your March? It's almost April now, geez! Time flies really fast..
At the moment, it is Autumn in Sydney. Not that hot anymore, and not that cold YET.. Sometimes it's raining so hard though, like yesterday.. The weather is just unbelievable here.. Some said it's like you live in a city that has 4 season in a day! What season is it now in Surabaya? Is it raining?... Hhhh, I miss Indo :(
As you know from my previous post, I moved to a new apartment. It took me around 1 week to unpack, organize, and put everything in the right place. So glad it's settled now! :)
Ok.. Done with the introduction, let's start the real post now..
As my opening post,
The stories happened a long time ago. The moral point came to me ONCE, but I almost forget it again. Then out of nowhere, I was being reminded again recently..
I considered myself as a perfectionist in some areas like work, school, people, etc.
Becoming perfectionist, there is a positive and negative side on it. Perhaps the positive is whatever task you give to that person, it will be done in a really proper and professional way. On the contrary, the negative is when it is supposed to be a team-work, it's hard to trust other. I need to double check it with my own eyes and most times, I can think that it's supposed to be done exactly like the way I want it since my way is 100% the best.
It happened when I was in high school. When it comes to group tasks, it's always me and this great friend of mine. Whatever it is, I enjoyed myself being the one in charge. So I gave her order to do it like this and that, worse, sometimes I want to handle that assignment myself and give her a super easy job like printing. Yes, printing only. I did everything and I like it being that way.
When the score came out, it's always 90 and above. I am super proud of it, being praised by many teachers, adored by so many friends, numerous people want to be in the same group as mine because everything is organized, getting the highest score in class, WOW! For my individual task or exam, I always get a high score too. She only got 70.. I started to tease her, harshly joking "Kamu cuma bisanya nge-print, enak kan 1 group sama aku nilaimu naik semua, jadi membantu nilai-nilai kamu yang lain".
Believe it or not, I had that side of me.
I went to Sydney to continue my study and she enrolled to one of the best university in Surabaya.
Then, she told me me something that made me really surprise, or you can say, shocked!
She got 99% in her exams, most times - without really studying seriously. She only studied 1 day prior her exam, also she studied while watching korean drama. Oh come on??? And in the middle of that, she could text me.. I was the one that keep saying to her you need to study. But how come the score is so high? (Notes : No cheating at all).
Not only that, she also had 3++ something as her IPK (Indeks prestasi-I don't know what you called it in English lol). Her group tasks got the highest mark from the teacher. She also got A in her individual assignment.
Are you kidding me?
When she shared her happiness to me, I answered "Congratzzz!!! You're amazing.. But how can you never show me that kind of performance when we're in high school? You could accomplish much more if you were like that too in high school."
Her answered silenced me : " Because you handled everything.. You never gave me the chance to show it".
She said again : "When we have group tasks, you only give me the task to print. You never put me in charge. When I did something, you always want to check it all first and changed it exactly like the way you want it to be, before we hand it in to the teacher."
She continued "But that's fine. I got a high score also when I was with you. Just letting you know that you need skill in printing something.. Don't underestimate the power of printing.. Therefore, you got a good score because of me too,hahahahha".
I was like "What did she just say?. I've never gave her a chance to show it? Whaaaattt?".
After we finished that conversation, happily of course, that night I started reflecting.
"Am I like that?". Then inside my heart, there was a voice said "Yes you were".
Finally I admit, "Oh my God, Yes I was".
(Noted : Till this time, we were remain good and close)
End of the old stories, the beginning of the new one.
For years and years, I actually can say : I control it pretty well. I can trust other, I gave other opportunities to show me their skills, doing something with their own way.
Namun entah sejak kapan, sebenarnya sisi jelek dari perfeksionist itu perlahan-lahan kembali.
Apa yang seharusnya menjadi diskusi bersama, berakhir dengan perasaan tidak puas dalam hati jika jawaban akhir yang keluar tidak seperti yang saya perkirakan atau pikirkan.
Apa yang seharusnya dijadikan pertukaran pikiran untuk dapat mendewasakan diri, berakhir menjadi ketidak terimaan akan pola pikir orang lain yang menurut saya sama sekali tidak efficient dan tidak effective.
Apa yang seharusnya sama sekali tidak perlu dipermasalahkan, justru seakan-akan menjadi masalah terbesar yang harus diperdebatkan untuk dicari jalan keluarnya saat itu juga.
I just realized about this few months ago.
Ketika saya kesal sekali karena tidak bisa menerima pendapat atau penjelasan orang lain, I called my mom.
Saya berkata kepada beliau, "Mi, bagaimana mungkin terkadang orang bisa berpikir cara menyelesaikan masalah seperti ini adalah dengan melakukan bla bla bla... Cara seperti itu sungguh memakan waktu yang lama dan hampir tidak mungkin berhasil. Seharusnya seperti ini bla bla bla.. Benar kan mi pikiran saya? Kan harusnya seperti itu? Cepat dan pasti bagus nanti hasilnya."
She answered me but I guess I did not really listen to her since almost 3 times in a week (and it happened more than 1 week), at that time, I called her again and again.
Ketika saya terus mengatakan permasalahan yang sama berulang-ulang, she finally said this, perkataan yang pada akhirnya membuat saya sadar :
" Cin, jika kamu seperti ini terus, sampai 10 tahun ke depan nanti, kamu akan tetap telepon mami dengan masalah yang sama. Setiap orang itu berbeda. Mereka mengerjakan dan menyelesaikan sesuatu dengan cara yang berbeda-beda. Bahkan cara pandang tiap orang pun berbeda. Kamu tidak bisa membuat mereka semua memiliki cara kerja yang sama dengan kamu."
" Darimana kamu tahu bahwa jalan yang kamu pikirkan adalah yang terbaik? Kok bisa-bisanya kamu bilang mereka tidak sanggup menyelesaikan sesuatu hanya karena mereka menawarkan jalan keluar yang berbeda dengan yang kamu miliki? Kamu masa tahu kalau mereka sebenarnya juga mempertimbangkan banyak hal yang sebenarnya jauh lebih teliti dibanding kamu sebelum mengambil keputusan?"
" Kamu juga harus ingat posisi kamu, Cin. Kamu itu siapa, menuntut orang untuk menjadi seperti kamu. Apakah kamu sudah sempurna? Mami ingatkan jangan sombong.. Menuntut orang menjadi sempurna, sedangkan kamu sendiri tidak sempurna".
- "Ketika kamu menghargai seseorang, kamu seharusnya menerima mereka, bukan menuntut terlalu berlebihan dan merubah."
"Jika memang ada yang memang harus dirubah dari mereka, terutama karakter, nanti Tuhan yang akan bertindak sendiri. Yang bisa mengubahkan orang hanya Tuhan, Cin. Tuhan punya caraNya sendiri. Kalau kamu menuntut mereka terus sekarang, dengan kata lain kamu tidak percaya dong kalau Tuhan bisa membuat mereka menjadi lebih baik? Yang terbaik menurut kamu adalah dengan mereka menjadi kamu, tapi yang terbaik menurut Tuhan adalah jauh melebihi yang kamu pikirkan, dengan waktuNya yang sudah ditentukan."
Selama kurang lebih seminggu, saya bergumul dalam segala nasehat yang mami berikan. Tiap malam sebelum tidur, saya menyisihkan waktu yang lebih lama dari biasanya untuk merenungkan hal tersebut. I closed my eyes, praying, talking to my God alone inside my heart.
Asking " All this time, the same thing keep happening, same difficulties, is it because of me? The problem itself, is it actually me? Benarkah selama ini, saya menjadi lupa diri?".
Hari demi hari, saya menanyakan hal yang sama dan tidak ada jawaban.
Hingga mendekati hari terakhir di minggu tersebut, saya mendapatkan sebuah REMA.
Ketika saya duduk diam di atas tempat tidur, story between me and my friend that I told you in the beginning of this post popped back out of nowhere. Ingatan itu semua kembali dengan jelas, dan saya bertanya kepada diri sendiri, "Ah, why this memory again?..
Minutes after that, this heart knew that what happens to me, had already happened to me ONCE, LONG TIME AGO.. It's just different people in different time.
Then it became clear.. ONCE AGAIN, THE PROBLEM WAS ME..
Has the same story ever happened to you too?
When you forgot your position, not looking to yourself but focus on other people too much.. Thinking that you are the smartest and greatest for everything. If anything goes wrong, it's other people's fault, not yours. They need to change, you don't. Has this kind of thing ever cross your mind?
I need several days to settle my heart and mind from that case since it's hard sometimes to admit that the problem is not actually 'the' problem if you know what the REAL problem is, (in this case) which is YOURSELF.
Days pass by, I guess it's true that time could heal a lot of things, especially heart condition.
At night before I slept, sitting on my bed, looking up, smiling, telling my Creator this :
- Thank you... Thank you for bringing those memories back to me. Thank you for making me realize my problem through my history. Thank you for letting me experienced this. Thank you for using my mom to spoke the words I need to hear. She's the only one that has that kind of patient for telling me the truth everyday. Thank you for the wisdom that you gave to her, a wisdom which I failed to grasp because of my ego.
- Then Lord, teach me. Back to basic again. Since I know what you required of me, to act justly, love mercy, and walk HUMBLY with You. (Micah 6:8). I'm sorry. And thank you.
Oh this heart is really thankful for everything because of Him. How His mercy for me never comes to an end. Even I fail Him everyday, He never fails me.
Weeks after, I met with one of the people that I used to criticized over and over when I talked to my mom on the phone. We talked for quite a while and when it almost end, I said this sentence :
- I am sorry for all these time, I guess I became difficult towards you. Thank you for being patient with me. I always hope you change. I know you sensed my willingness, right? So I keep pushing you. But on the contrary, whether you realized it or not, I am the one that changed because of you, in a better way indeed. So thank you and let me say this at least : you have everything you need to become whoever you want to be, just the way you are.
At the same day, at night, he texted me. He said, 'Thank you for trusting me. I was so touched and happy by the words you said before. It means a lot to me. I will never forget it forever. I'm gonna be a better person. Thank you ya Cin'.
This made me realize about the biggest weapon if you want other to change...
Friends, I hope you learn something here.
1. Not everyone, not everything in this world need to be changed sometimes.
2. Don't be too focus on the negative side until you forget, there is ALWAYS positive sides too in everything.
3. Your opinion, your perspective, might not the the right one sometimes, even if you are the smartest or logical person in class, in your group, in your environment. Good doesn't always means right.
4. And this, my biggest lesson : WHEN YOU RESPECT SOMEONE, ESPECIALLY THOSE WHO CLOSEST TO YOU, THE 1ST THING YOU NEED TO DO IS ACCEPT THEM, BY WHATEVER AND WHOEVER THEY ARE.
Like I said, I was and am a perfectionist (Just in different level now,ahhahaha). When I was sitting in primary, the teacher gave me a homework to draw something on the computer. I wasn't good in drawing but I tried my best. When the picture finished, I realized in the left corner, there was a small black dot like this .
It supposed to be fine, I was sure actually noone gonna notice that. I asked my mom about the picture, she said it was fine. When I told her about the dot, she said it's nothing, she did not realize it until I told her.
However I keep staring at the computer. In my heart, I keep saying to myself, 'Ah this is not right, it's not perfect. I want that dot to be disappear. My picture looks bad because of that small dot. I can't accept it, I need to fix it'.
Then I started look for the erase button. On the top left corner, there was this white square button that I thought it was an eraser, so I clicked it. Then there was a box came up with the sentence and since I couldn't understand it, I clicked no. You know what happen next, all my drawing suddenly gone. In 1 second, it's gone. I was like 'whaaaaaatttt? where did it go?'.
Hours after trying to find my picture, I finally realized that what I pressed was not an eraser, it's a new blank page and I clicked no when it asked me whether I wanted to save my current page or not. Now that it happened, I regret it. I regret that I got distracted by that small black dot, while actually the actual picture was absolutely fine. I was so sad until I couldn't doing anything after it.
That was my 1st lesson I got from my perfectionist character.
- Sometimes, it's a human tendency that we want everything to be perfect and beautiful to be presented in front of others. But we forget that we are not perfect. Imperfect thing never create perfect thing.
Only God alone is perfect. Only Him alone can give and create perfect things.
The good news is : HE IS FINE WITH OUR IMPERFECTNESS.
Then if He's is fine with it, who are you that you can't accept other people weakness? Who are you that you can judge others? Who are you that you can speak which one is right for other people's life? I asked and spoke these words to myself so many times at that time.
Realize this my friend, on the day when you emphasize other people's weakness or mistakes too much, you have already become arrogant and forget your position.
- Matthew 7:3-5 = Why do you see the speck that is in your brother's eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye?..., first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother's eye.
Of course you can give suggestion to others, give them advice, but you can't force them to change. It's their decision. They have free will.
And if they do change, you cannot expect them to change the way you want them to be. Every person has their own way to achieve something.
That's why your happiness can't depend on others. You cannot put your happiness based on what other people's do, even the people closest to you.
Your happiness is based on your own life's choice, NOT OTHER PEOPLE'S LIFE THAT YOU PUT INSIDE YOURS.
- Be thankful with what you are. Be content with your condition. That way, you can also have a sense of gratitude towards everyone. By doing that, despite of their negative sides, you know they do have a lot of more positive sides which only need to be stirred up.
Do not look at others with underestimating eyes, look at them with the eyes of compassion, the eyes of love, like what Jesus did to us. Not criticize their weakness, but embrace them.
I tell you a secret that I actually have already realized long time ago :
OUR IMPERFECTION IS A PERFECT THING IN GOD'S EYES. WHY? BECAUSE HE HAS GIVEN US A PERFECT GIFT, CALLED CHRIST, THE SALVATION. THAT WAS THE MOST BEAUTIFUL EXCHANGE THAT HAS EVER HAPPENED.
WORLD AND HEAVEN COLLIDED, RESULTING THE BIGGEST MIRACLE AMONG ALL.
HOW IMPERFECT THING HAS THE OPPORTUNITY TO BECOME PERFECT AGAIN, ON HIS TIME. THAT'S WHY I CAN SAY PROUDLY, NOTHING CAN SEPARATE ME FROM THE LOVE OF CHRIST. HE HAS BOUND ME WITH HIS AMAZING GRACE.
- THEREFORE, WHENEVER I SEE OTHER HUMAN BEING NOW, I LEARN TO HAVE HIS EYES IN ME. WHAT I SEE FROM THEIR IMPERFECTION IS A PERFECT CREATION FROM GOD'S ETERNAL LOVE, THAT MAKES IT PERFECT IN EVERY SINGLE WAY.
That secret also conclude 1 thing : LOVE NEVER FAILS.. (1 Corinthians 13:8)
- THE BIGGEST WEAPON IF YOU WANT THE ONE YOU LOVE, RESPECT OR CLOSE TO YOU TO CHANGE IS LOVE. LOVE HAS ITS OWN WAY TO GO TO PEOPLE'S HEART. LOVE IS THE KEY.
- LOVE THAT EMBRACES BY ACCEPTING PEOPLE.
- LOVE IS NOT ABOUT PUSHING PEOPLE.
- LOVE IS ABOUT GIVING ENCOURAGEMENT AND SUPPORT.
- AND LOVE IS PATIENT, IT DOES NOT INSIST ITS OWN WAY. IT GIVES HOPE AND STRENGTH TO ENDURE ALL THINGS.
That kind of Love changed me.. ONCE AND FOREVER..
I am here, writing all these encouragement words, not to criticize you.. Not to show you I am smart enough to realize my mistake and change.. NO.. NOT AT ALL.. On the contrary, by telling you all these stories, you can see that until now, I am still an imperfect human being who has so many weaknesses in every area in my life..
However, it doesn't stop me to give all the praise and honor unto Thee.. My experience is one of the channels that I can use to glorify Him..
Because of Him, I can overcome my own negativity..
Thus, I want to invite you to learn together.. Let's strive on to be better and better each day.. Let this story becomes our life's reminder.. And let's turn the difficulties in your life into a song of worship towards our Creator.. Forever will be, He is good..
- Celebrate the differences
- Cherish others
- Remember your position.. You are not any better than others..
Lastly, try to ask this question to yourself and reflect from it :
- IF ALL PERSON IN THIS UNIVERSE IS LIKE YOU, WILL IT BE A BETTER WORLD?