“As it is pleasant to see the sea from the land, so it is pleasant for him who has escaped troubles to think of them.” – Epictetus
Likely all of us can look back at something we struggled through, training, education, first having children, the struggle of being young and broke and starting a family, and the list goes on. We can look back on these times and now we see something different than we felt then. We see the good times we had. We season those experiences with the lessons we learned and the growth we experienced. Those hard times made us who we are.
Here comes the great news! If we act now, we can enjoy the feeling of looking back at our difficult times with the perspective of all of the good they are doing for us, while we are going through them!
The trick to being able to attain this perspective is detachment. Our ability to see the situation we are in objectively and recognize the good things that will come from our struggles is found in that single word. Detachment.
It might sound like we would have to be emotionally distant or less involved in the situation we are going through but we don’t. We are stepping back to get a better sense of the complete situation. And the result is we will play a more positive role in our own situation, for ourselves and for others.
Instead of trying to the any situation from both side, or multiple sides, we will be trying to see it from the outside. As if it is a movie or a play. This is not going to be easy. It may very well take the rest of our lives. But the end result is we will lose our tempers less, say things we don’t mean less, and ignore the feelings of others less. We will express concern more, say the important things we don’t want to leave unsaid more, and make the decisions that help others more.
How’s that for a super power?
virtus fortis vocat