April 12

“It is better to admonish than to reproach: for admonition is mild and friendly, but reproach is harsh and insulting; and admonition corrects those who are doing wrong, but reproach only convicts them.” – Epictetus

The difference is the expression of disappointment. Who is responsible for the feeling of disappointment when we feel it? We are. Why would we ever feel the need to express a feeling we are responsible for to someone else and then attach it to their actions? To hurt them. To strike out and try to subjugate them in some sense is unfortunately the most likely answer. Likely, we don’t do this consciously but whenever we place another person’s actions out in front as the cause of our own feelings, our articulation of it comes from a place of being hurt, and trying in some way to hurt back.

If another person’s actions are not what we would like to see and the outcome of their actions leaves us feeling disappointed, it is more helpful to everyone involved for us to instead show them kindly where they are going wrong and at the same time show or explain to them how and why we would prefer them to act.

It might be a situation where we have some reason to have a say in the way people behave, but the again it might not. If it is not, then we are left appealing to their reason and hoping that our appeals are heard. If they choose to ignore us further, it is still up to us how we respond.

Best to continue to respond in a way that lends itself to the people we wish to be rather than the people we were, or are right now.

virtus fortis vocat


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