There is nothing in the world so much admired as a man who knows how to bear unhappiness with courage.


There is nothing in the world so much admired as a man who knows how to bear unhappiness with courage. – Seneca

He bore unhappiness like a champion.

He bore his unhappiness like a champion.

What does that mean?
This quote is about what the author of the quote thinks is one of the most admirable traits a person can demonstrate. Specifically, he admires those who can bear unhappiness with courage.

I would extend this from unhappiness to include all the things which cause it, such as hardship, bad luck, poor circumstances, and the like. But then I stop and think about what unhappiness means, for the easiest way to bear these things is to not let our happiness be hurt by them.

In that case, the unhappiness is in the eye of the beholder, not in the person undertaking their life and facing challenges with courage. Even then, even if they are happy with their lot, they are still admirable for facing their challenges with courage.

Why is facing the challenges of life with courage important?  
There’s an old quote which says that into each life some rain will fall. The point is that no one lives their whole life untouched by unhappiness. Things happen. Even if only for a short time, these challenges will shake your happiness.

But that’s why having courage is important. Being able to face these challenges is important because they will come. Life will come at you, and it won’t always be nice. How will you react? Will you run and hide, hoping it goes away, or will you face it with courage?

I’m kind of old-school on this, and many other topics. Get what help you can, but face it. Hiding from it won’t make the challenge go away. Unfortunately, it will likely get worse instead of better. Prepare as best you can, learn what you can, get what help you can, and get to work!

Where can I apply this in my life?
How many of you have seen the farewell speech Lou Gerhig gave to his fans? That was a man facing death, with courage. He faced it with courage, grace, and gratitude. That’s one hell of a guy, wouldn’t you say? Of course, death is the ultimate challenge, and tends to make for much unhappiness. But we can hope that such a thing is not an immediate challenge for us. But we face many other challenges in our lives.

Perhaps you are facing one right now. How do you define a challenge? They come in different sizes, shapes, and degrees of difficulty. For some, determining what to have for dinner means having to pick a restaurant. For others, it is a far more difficult challenge. Some challenges take more courage than others.

Also realize that the quote is spoken from the standpoint of the viewer. Some of the things I do without hesitation would be real challenges for others. They may admire me for that. And it goes both ways, the things others do can be difficult for us to face, but easy for them.

I know people in law enforcement and firefighting who do things routinely which would bother me greatly. I express my admiration, but they just say that it is part of what they do, no big deal. To me, though, that’s part of being able to face a challenge with courage. And I admire them for that.

Where in you life is there room for a little more courage, and a little less whining? We know all the basics, life’s not fair, bad things happen to good people, all of that stuff. Whining and complaining won’t make anything better, nor will it accomplish anything.

Why do these challenges seem to be such difficulty to you, and what would you have to change within yourself to better be able to face it? Who might be able to help you? What resources can you find to help you face the challenge with courage?

It could be something “little” like public speaking, or driving downtown in a big city. One gives me real problems, the other is old hat (I grew up in a big city, if you needed a hint). I know what I would need to do, should I ever need to speak in front of a crowd.

Do you know what you would have to do in order to face your fear, or anything which causes unhappiness in your life? Have you given it much thought? After all, that’s the point of the blog, to get you to examine your life, and try to plan a specific path forward.

Could you be an inspiration to someone? Could you be admired? It’s up to you. What will you choose to do?

From: Twitter, @OprahsQuotes
confirmed at : http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/l/luciusanna130620.html
Photo by Chris connelly

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About philosiblog

I am a thinker, who is spending some time examining those short twitter quotes in greater detail on my blog.
This entry was posted in attitude, courage, inspire, setting an example, truth, wisdom and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to There is nothing in the world so much admired as a man who knows how to bear unhappiness with courage.

  1. Pingback: Death smiles at us all, but all a man can do is smile back. | philosiblog

  2. doug says:

    another iteration of the notion that life is not fair that ive found particularly hard to swallow is sometimes that some get great recognition for small accomlishments yet some bear great hardship that goes unnoticed

    • philosiblog says:

      Sad but true. But the important thing is how you deal with the situation. If it can be changed, do you work to change it? If it cannot be changed, do you let it be, and do your best to continue?

      Those who do not challenge something which both should, and can, be changed are not doing as much as they could. Those who assail the unchangeable are simply wasting time and energy better spent on things which can be changed.

      The real trick is determining what is and what is not possible to change. And, that changes over time, and with new experiences. Life can be tricky, which is why we need to be flexible and aware of what is going on around us.

      Thanks for stopping by, and also for leaving a comment. Hope to hear from you again.

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