While exploring the Amalfi coast in Italy, I came across their famous Sfusato lemons. They are three or four times the size of your regular lemons in South Africa.
I mean… Look at the size of this thing?!
Lemons suggest sourness or difficulty in life. Making lemonade is turning them into something positive or desirable.
The truth is, I’ve never liked this phrase. I get the sentiment and all… lemons are sour and overwhelming, but if you add a little sugar and water you can turn a bitter experience into a sweet one.
The reality is that sometimes life is crappy and it gives you the worst, most foul tasting lemons. Trying to make something good of a situation that makes you feel bad - only leaves one miserable.
I believe it is completely okay not to make lemonade, to keep the lemons as they are, to eat the lemons just as they are; to experience all the raw emotions that goes with living.
Sheltering yourself from the fact that your life feels like an utter and complete mess prevents you from true transformation.
It means you are continuously accepting what you are getting instead of looking for a different way forward.
Lemons have many purposes and every lemon is not meant for lemonade.
It’s true that profound transformations often emerge from deep suffering … but it’s also true that profound transformations take a long time.
You don’t always have to make lemonade.
You don’t have to turn something bad into something good.
You don’t have to sugar coat it or dilute it
It is okay to want something better.
It is okay to keep knocking until a better door opens
It is okay to just sit with it - It won’t last forever!
I guess that’s why I’m picking on this aphorism today: “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade!” is too easy. It means thats there’s ALWAYS an immediate and obvious thing to do with what has been given to you
But life is not simple and obvious.
If we turn every obstacle or unpleasant situation into something it’s not we tend to push the true reality and meaning aside, we miss the lesson and growth that can potentially come from just accepting it for what it is, an unpleasant and uncomfortable situation.
You can glide more easily through life's bad situations when you use them as teachable moments for yourself.
There is something you can learn from virtually every circumstance you encounter.
When you face a problem, think of it as a challenge that is strengthening you for a future situation.
You can confidently leave this situation knowing that you will make a wiser, more-informed decision down the road.
So next time you are presented with a lemon or two remember it’s perfectly okay to just eat the lemons one bite at a time until they are gone.
To look at the situation and say “I’m not going to water this down, I’m not going to sugar coat it. This will not last forever”