It’s not what happens, it’s what you do. 

What do you do when things don’t happen the way you hoped for? 

When you worked hard and studied all night yet you failed the exams. 

When you worked your butt off but still didn’t get the promotion. 

When you gave up everything to win someone’s heart but you got stab behind before you even knew it. 

When you sacrificed your own joy and career raising children but they still end up prison. 

When you did all your best but it seemed like your best wasn’t good enough. 

What do you do when life hits you with a brick and no one was there to help? 

We all have these frustrations in life don’t we? Don’t be a pony now and pretend that everything is going exactly the way you want them to be. We all have this “in-control” mentality which I believe that human nature is wired with. Whether it is your life or someone else’s. We all want to be in control. And I kid you not, we will never be in control. If you don’t believe me, try and tame a cat. Try to make it do some tricks or make it fetch. I’m telling you, even if you squeal , it won’t happen. 

When I was 17, I tried going to South Korea to rendezvous with my foster parents back then. I summoned all my strength and resources even skipped classes. I prayed and believed and shouted my hallelujah victory but in the end, I was denied of entry. I was so mad at the world then. It was pivotal and life altering experience for me. 

And yet, I have kept my promise to myself that I would still go there no matter what. 

15 years later, I thought I should give it a shot once more. I believed in the power of second chances. This time the odds are heavy on my side since I live in Japan and I’ve got a legit visa. But little did I know that the rules have recently changed! Talk about good timing! And the worse, I found out about it at the airport when I was about to check in for my flight! Holy smokes! I just wanted to crush the air! 

What do you do at times like  this?  What do you do when your dreams are shattered to smithereens ? Do you curse and blame people and the system? Or Do you grow up and take responsibility? 

Here’s my thought about these undertakings – It’s not what happens, it’s what you do with what happens. What happens, happens to us all . Don’t wish it was easier, wish you were better. By the way, I heard all of these spoken by Jim Rohn who is one of my heroes. 

So when a small winter hit me at the airport, I immediately thought, this was all on me. No one else is be blamed but me. Now, what do you do James? 

Well, it was no use getting mad and crying over spilled milk so I chose to chill out a bit and chose to go on a domestic trip instead. 

All I knew was that I just wanted to have some time off and think but little did I know that I was actually meant to be in that place at the right time. I booked a guesthouse in Hakone where I met this young couple who happen to be the owners of the property! I was so inspired that they weren’t even in their 30s yet they are successfully managing their own business. We got the chance to get to know one another and for some reasons, we sort of having that chemistry in all our philosophies in life. They are outliers indeed. They thought differently and acted out what they are really passionate about. I was really inspired by their stories which was too good to be true but it was. I came in feeling down but I took off rejuvenated and had my moxie back! 

3 Takeaways. 

  1. It’s not what happens, it’s what you do.  Each of us has a fair share of trouble and if you feel like you have more, that means life thought that you were tougher than others. 
  2. Get your bounce back quickly. Succumbing yourself to a pity party wont do any good. Champions don’t stay down when they tripped. 
  3. There’s always the bigger picture. When you thought that you were better off that way, make no mistake, the good Lord has always something better and grandeur plan for you. 

A remarkable trip with remarkable people in Hakone, Japan. 

Published by Isshin Kobayashi

A citizen of a far away Kingdom sent here as an ambassador with a mission to influence the domain of Education.

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