“Nothing will ever befall me that I will receive with gloom or a bad disposition. All the things which cause complaint or dread are like the taxes of life – things from which you should never hope for exemption or seek escape.” Seneca, Moral Letters.

 

There is almost always a positive aspect to every negative situation that you find annoying, irritating or unpleasant. It’s relative. The positive value in something might not be apparent to you in the here-and-now – meaning that the pleasure you might experience by having something or avoiding something will not be realised until later than you would like.

 

Learning to delay gratification is at the heart of emotional management. We pay our money in taxes in order to benefit from collective services that are there when we need them. We save a few pounds every month for a rainy day. We stayed at home during the pandemic, in order to be able to go out freely, safely, gratefully when that day came. In this way, we can enjoy the swings and roundabouts at our leisure.

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