It is idle to dread what you cannot avoid. – Publius Syrus
What does that mean?
Most of us have dreaded or worried about the coming of something that was inevitable, at one time or another in our lives. Whether it was waiting for dad to get home to dispense justice after an afternoon of dubious adventures, or awaiting a “review” with the boss, we’ve been there in some manner at some point in our lives.
It rarely helped, did it? The dreading, that is. Did it make the time pass more quickly? Did it make the time pass more pleasantly? Did it make us feel better about ourselves while we waited? Did it do anything to buoy our spirits?
So not only didn’t it help us feel better, but it also had absolutely no impact on what happened, right? What was unavoidable or inevitable still happened, despite our dread. So it has always been, and so it always will be. Learn it early, and you may find a better way to bide your time while you await what cannot be avoided.
Why is fortitude important?
The word fortitude is defined at thefreedictionary.com as being “Strength of mind that allows one to endure pain or adversity with courage.” And that is what this quote is all about. The strength of mind to bide your time, awaiting that which cannot be avoided.
The strength of mind of which we speak is very much an internal toughness. It is the way you look at a difficulty. It is the way you handle your thoughts when things seem to be going from bad to worse, or when a little bit of panic is setting in.
The fortitude that allows you to deal with the pangs of hunger, knowing that you will not be eating this meal. The fortitude that allows you to endure thirst while drink. The fortitude which is required to stand at the front of the aisle and wait for the woman to walk down, or the fortitude to wait for the ring.
Where can I apply this in my life?
While the final one is only half in jest, the other two have happened to me several times. When you are camping with young children, sometimes food or water is lost, damaged, dropped or otherwise made unusable. Then what? Do you make the kids go hungry, or do you step up and take care of the kids first. I think you know my answer to that question.
There are many things that cannot be avoided, and many more that have consequences once you start down the path. Yes, a nice dinner at a restaurant can be great, but you should know in advance that there will be a bill at the end of the meal. There is no benefit in dreading it, is there?
Taxes, at least for most of us, are another thing one cannot avoid. Yet still many of us dread the day we have to pay. Again, even if we know that the act of dreading what cannot be avoided, without fortitude, we dread it anyway, right?
For me, developing fortitude simply became a habit. Any time there was something I couldn’t avoid, I tried not to dread it, I tried not to worry about it, I tried not to let it get to me. Quite simply, I tried to toughen myself up mentally.
What are the things that you dread, yet cannot avoid? Perhaps something as simple as a traffic light, or being stuck behind someone slow on the road or in line at a store. As I mentioned, paying the annual taxes, whether to the government or paying annual fees to associations, it still must be done.
To me, aggravation is another sign of a lack of mental toughness, a lack of fortitude. Instead of dreading something, you become angry, agitated, or otherwise wound up about something you cannot avoid or cannot change. This is another great opportunity to work on your mental toughness, your fortitude.
As the definition mentions, any time you have to endure pain (and by extension, discomfort) or adversity (and by extension, things not going quite as well as you’d like), you can practice building your fortitude. For starters, you can work with discomfort and minor inconveniences, and then build up until you can handle almost anything.
And still, dreading that which cannot be avoided gains you nothing. So I would recommend building up your mental toughness, your fortitude, and facing life without dread, without worry, and without fear. Well, at least as much as you can. 8)
From: Twitter, @_inspirational_
confirmed at : http://www.inspirational-quotes.info/dontworry.html third from bottom
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