We Can Only Connect The Dots Backwards

You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something – your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.

Steve Jobs

Apart from “trust that the dots will connect somehow in our future”, there is something else that I got from this quote.

Namely that we control the dots. In a way, we are the masters of the dots. We create the world. It literally doesn’t exist until we take action.

This is very powerful. It’s the complete anti-thesis of a victim approach, in which “everything happens to us”. In reality, everything just happens. And whatever we do with what happens is a dot, a temporary force field, coagulating all this energy into a compressed enclosure, from which something else emerges, and so on. All these dots are connected by our choices. And all this web of connections is forming what we call “reality”.

I am very close to end a significant chapter of my life, one that lasted 14 years. Still not there yet, still a few more weeks needed, but I am very close. It was by far the longest continuous process that unfolded for me.

At the beginning of this chapter there was a dot, and a direction in which I thought I was going. The direction changed many times, and many other dots appeared. Now, the process ends and there will be one final dot.

In hindsight, it all makes sense now. The lesson is learned. It was very different from the lesson I was expecting at the beginning of all this, but still very powerful.

Sometimes, life doesn’t go in the direction I expect it to go. When this happens, when abrupt changes are turning my world upside down, the place where I eventually end up is most of the times way better than the place I thought I would be in. It’s like life is telling me: “you don’t need that, I have something even better”.

In the beginning, I fight back: “but I want this, why can’t I have this, life?”

It takes a while until life gives me enough dots so I can finally understand the big picture, and when this happens, I realize this new picture is way, way better than whatever I could come up with.

I am now old enough to understand that, as long as I choose the right dots, even if in the beginning it will feel awkward, confusing or incredibly hard, the dots will connect in the right order.


Photo by Federico Beccari on Unsplash

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