By Lisbeth Anne Marín
Have you ever worked on a complicated jigsaw puzzle only to discover that some final pieces were missing? What a bummer! You search over~under~sideways~down~
but the absentee pieces have simply vanished leaving the puzzle conspicuously incomplete.
See, you usually don’t know anything’s missing till you’ve gotten well underway. My favorite puzzle-making technique is to sort similar color pieces and set them aside to be added into the big picture later. After all, as long as there are still pieces on the table, there’s no heads-up that a gaping hole lies in wait.
As a rule of thumb, having missing pieces or visible holes in your stuff is not a good sign and in the case of puzzles, there is no substitute for an exact fit.
I’ve found that puzzles, generally speaking, are a good metaphor for life. An abundance of time is spent in search of an exact fit for a multitude of pieces. Merrily we’re rolling along when suddenly, holes become evident. Missing pieces show up in your relationships, finances, emotions or lifestyle. These might be holes where the pain gets into your spirit because certain missing pieces expose our deepest vulnerabilities.
The past two decades have revealed significant holes where my pain get’s in. We’ve all got ‘em… miserable mistakes, faux pas and hideous blunders that teach us the invaluable knowledge of consequences and hopefully, toughen our hide in the process! These realizations present wonderful opportunities to appreciate those precious completed sections of the puzzle hidden in the corners of my mind.
Finally, I get where those sections fit into the big picture. Events that loomed as jabberwockies, are now as plain as those fine lines at the corners of my smile. Right before my eyes, newly finished sections of the puzzle slip into place like butter. I propose if you’ve weathered a personal storm but don’t clearly see the life lesson contained in the event, you’ve erred.
I further suggest that if you’ve found yourself saying ‘I can’t believe this is happening to me again’, it just might be the second or third presentation of that particular test. Pay attention! Recognize the lesson concealed within each test, or else you could get stuck in a lifetime of
Try to resist the urge to obsess over those missing pieces. Don’t overlook how much work you’ve done or fail to see the value of the finished sections of your puzzle. Certainly more significance should be given to the work you’ve accomplished rather than on those pesky holes that may become filled in your future.
I’ve been working on this marvelous, complicated puzzle for years. There have been spells of manic activity contrasted by swells of total apathy. There are pieces for which the search may never end and only in my last moments, when there are no more pieces on the table, will I realize that I never found them.
We all have missing pieces and holes where the pain gets in. I suppose this is where God teaches us the best lessons of our lives.
I believe perfect is an unrealistic measurement that few can attain. Perhaps we should ignore the holes and be thankful for finding most of our pieces.
The good news is... we can go on, even when missing a piece here and there. Some things, like lace are made beautiful by virtue of their holes; it’s the missing areas of thread that form the intricate beauty of the design. Endeavor to place less meaning on what’s missing and be cognizant of the splendor to be found within the sections you’ve completed.
Lisbeth Anne Marín
Motivational Speaker, Author & Professional Development Consultant specializing in interpersonal, teambuilding and organizational development skills.
She presents a wide array of training programs, motivational seminars and interactive workshops.
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Lisbeth Anne Marin
Fixing A Hole Where The Pain Gets In