A great quote that applies to us all

I noticed a quote online the other day that not only rings true for most of us, but perfectly sums up some of life's biggest ironies:

"It takes sadness to know happiness, noise to appreciate silence, absence to value presence."

In other words, we need to experience what it's like not to have something in order to appreciate having it.

We take something for granted and only begin to appreciate the happiness it brings us once it's no longer there.

For example, I've ended friendships and relationships over the years with people who took advantage of my kind, generous nature. The deep sadness I was feeling -- coupled with the fact I was at wits end -- prompted me to pull the plug, and I eventually found happiness in the company of others who valued my time.

Though disappointed and contrite at first, they later thanked me for teaching them what it really means to appreciate others. They ingrained this in their minds moving forward, helping them improve their current relationships and forge new ones.

Parents -- especially new moms -- are the first to acknowledge the part that addresses appreciating silence. Many of the moms I know frequently post memes and quotes on Facebook having to with cherishing alone time.

It seems many of them don't foresee how drastically a child can change the dynamic at home. A crying baby who demands attention 24/7 and leaves food and toys strewn on the floor is a far cry from a quiet environment in which you can quietly read the paper. Many admit that they never appreciated or cared much for silence until they became parents.

As for the third part of the quote, most people concede that absence really does make the heart grow fonder. It's not always easy to appreciate someone once you've grown accustomed to seeing them every day. Once they leave town for business or take on additional projects that limit their availability, we suddenly yearn for their presence. We long to be with those whom -- for circumstances beyond our control -- we can't be with often.

Here's a trick: People can mindfully gain a greater appreciation for the things and people most dear to them by simply imagining them no longer being around. This is a much better alternative to waiting until someone gets fed up to finally value their presence. At that point, it's probably too late anyway.

What do you think of the above quote? Do you find it be true and relevant in your life?

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