The other day I was having, more or less, a crisis of confidence. This is not an unusal occurrence. This particular bout, for a variety of reasons, was especially acute. A good friend, playing both the role of clear eyed realist and motivational speaker, told me that there are certain things you can't control in life and that you have to take some things at face value. When faced with situations that I have no control over, I image contrived scenarios (in which I'm somehow imbued with God-like powers) to explain why some thing I said, or some action I didn't take, causes things to go awry. This friend told me that everyone goes through these things, and while that is surely true, it never makes you feel any better to be mired in a real or imagined personal hell. The friend went on to suggest to me that I make a list of the things I wanted in my life as a way to order my thoughts, see my goals, and figure out how to get to where I want to be. I haven't made that list yet, but I will...primarily because it's the right thing to do, but, on another level, I don't want to let this friend down. People who care don't offer advice for the sake of hearing themselves talk. They do so because on some level they are invested in you and they want to see you in a better place. It's my job to hear (and, perhaps more importantly, understand) what's being said. You have to take what's offered to you and apply it in an effort to improve yourself.
To that friend, thank you. And to everyone who is a friend to someone else, don't ever underestimate the power that your consideration, guidance, and support can have.