'Nobody's life is perfect all the time. We all go through life's hardships, failure, disappointment, heartbreaks and pain.'
That's what you say about little boys, isn't it? If they're lucky, they might grow up to be footballers. It's a social norm, an acceptable comment to pass on a baby. My frustration is not with the old lady. She is certainly not the first to have said it to Sam, and (I'm sure) won't be the last. My frustration is with the aspiration that lies behind it?
Since when did the world get so incredibly competitive? A long time ago many would say. Back in the day! Yes, ok... I know the grass is always greener the other side of the fence, I know, I know, it always has been.
It takes a lot to lay your heart out on a platter, hopelessly preparing yourself for the vultures to attack. To put yourself in the firing line and risk losing your passion forever. To wait for that lethal knock to your confidence, the bruising of your ego.
It would be easy for me to say that I wish I had a smaller nose, no lines on my face, and a thinner torso. But if I had all those things, would my life be suddenly improved? No. Because those things don't define me. They don't affect the way I live.
How you see yourself begins with a combination of all of the qualities and attributes of other people that you most admire. Your 'self-ideal' is a description of the person you would very much like to be, if you could embody the qualities that you most aspire to.
Of those who are currently retired in Britain, nearly two-fifths admitted that they had not properly prepared for the retirement they planned. Whilst some Britons are starting to realise the state of their finances before they retire, most are still only realising after they give up work.
I guess it's a bad thing that in today's society 'The Future' is not seen as something positive or aspiring, but instead something you have to prepare for with a trillion exams and work experience.
Having recently celebrated the art of Dickens we can also celebrate his message of social improvement and realise that those of us who take the initiative to offer a helping hand are justified in having, in regard to the results, great expectations.
I have a confession. When I was single, I didn't want to be single. I can't say I consciously aspired to be married; I got on with my career, my friendships, my life, but I knew full well that I aspired not to be single. So, I kept one eye open for Mr Right.