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Tiny Wisdom: The Same, But Different

“What you do today is important, because you are exchanging a day of your life for it.” -Unknown

My boyfriend, who is an aspiring screenwriter, has told me that the film industry and moviegoers essentially want “the same, but different.”

We want the same themes, but with different people; the same humor, but in different circumstances.

We want to see good rewarded, and for love to conquer all; we want the hero to change for the better, and the villain to reap what he sows.

We want action, excitement, adventure, and romance; we want to feel terrified and then relieved; we want to doubt and then believe.

We want to see people fall and survive—struggle and thrive. We want to feel the full spectrum of emotions, from low to high. We want to be moved, inspired, and maybe even in some small way, changed.

In the real world there are no happy endings, since we’re perpetually in the middle—and often, there’s gravity where filmmakers would insert levity, and unfairness where they would create justice.

Still, this is all very similar to life: from one day to the next, it’s often the same, but different.

We experience fears, insecurities, and emotions that we’ve known and felt for years. We deal with challenges that seem so familiar they may even seem like a part of us.

We might make mistakes we’ve made many times before. We might come against the same resistance we’ve been battling all our lives.

We may repeat the same patterns in relationships that we’ve known since we were young. And we may find ourselves receiving guidance that seems like nothing new.

And yet it’s always new. It’s always different. Even if the days are similar, we come to each one totally new people.

We come to our struggles with new insights. We come to each other with new understanding. And we come to each moment with new potential to be that hero—to make a different choice, to change for the better.

Sometimes it can seem like nothing ever changes and nothing ever will. But everything changes, in tiny shifts, every day. The real question is whether or not we’ll recognize the tiny shifts within us and act on what we feel.

Regardless of our circumstances, we always have a choice. We can choose more of the same; or we can recognize this moment is different—and that we can be, too.

Photo by malfet_

About Lori Deschene

Lori Deschene is the founder of Tiny Buddha and Recreate Your Life Story, an online course that helps you let go of the past and live a life you love. Her latest book, Tiny Buddha's Worry Journal, which includes 15 coloring pages, is now available for pre-order. For daily wisdom, follow Tiny Buddha on Twitter, Facebook & Instagram.

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