When things go awry

When things go awry or something unexpected happens, one can either interpret it as good or bad depending on one’s attitude. If it is good, one usually celebrates and enjoys the moment. If the thing is interpreted as bad, one can do a few things:

  1. Blame the world itself
  2. Blame other people in the world
  3. Examine one’s own doings and habits. This is the most difficult one. In doing so:
    • Figure out what one may have done that may have contributed to the unexpected occuring
    • Figure out how one could correct oneself
  4. Examine one’s thinking and figure out if one could react in any other way.

Situations are not simple in many cases. Things may turn out as they are because of a combination of one’s own doings, the doings of others and other things out of one’s control.

In any case, the best attitude seems to be that no matter what happens, one should try to accept it with equanimity even though this can be very hard.

As Nietzsche put it:

“My formula for greatness in a human being is amor fati: that one wants nothing to be different, not forward, not backward, not in all eternity. Not merely bear what is necessary, still less conceal it—all idealism is mendacity in the face of what is necessary—but love it.”

– Friedrich Nietzsche