“When you are distressed by an external thing, it’s not the thing itself that troubles you, but only your judgement of it. And you can wipe this out at a moment’s notice.” Marcus Aurelius, Meditations.
There are plenty of things in life that are unpleasant and that we wish would not happen. The loss of a loved one probably ranks the highest in many people’s lists. The emotions that bereavement invokes cannot be easily wiped out at a moment’s notice.
Understanding what something means to us – the importance, significance or ‘value’ that it has in our lives – helps with the process of managing the emotional distress. A dropped ice cream is annoying and a ‘loss’, but in the scheme of things, a relatively minor loss compared with the resources that might be available.
Resources are finite. Most don’t have access to deep pockets to replace thousands of lost ice creams. What resource is most important to you? Having the time simply to ‘be’. Who knows when that might run out.
Photo by Pawel Janiak on Unsplash.