Sunday, September 03, 2006

Choosing, endurance, happiness, and kindness

I saw the question: "And what can we do in the midst of affliction to endure?"

In a roundabout way, there is an answer, and it comes from the nature of the human mind and the reality that we are a part of. It is interesting that the research seems to indicate (very, very strongly) that attempting to exert direct control over an emotional response has a negative effect when we try to choose to be happy.

So, if we try to choose to be happy, we are probably going to be less happy.

On the other hand, we are quite capable of choosing to be kind because there is strong support to the position that we can choose approaches to take. The choice of taking the approach of kindness will help us to endure and live well.

It is similar to the issue of choosing to endure. If you are trying to choose endurance, you are probably already in trouble. On the other hand, if you start looking for reasons to endure, you will find them, and in finding them, endure.

Live your life for others, be kind, and you will find endurance and happiness, things that everyone thinks they seek. Especially when grief attempts to overwhelm you, there is reason in the choice to find meanings as a foundation and to choose the approach of kindness. In enduring for others, in being kind to them, we find our own path and way home, in spite of every affliction.


BrianJ said...

Nicely said: "Live your life for others, be kind, and you will find endurance and happiness, things that everyone thinks they seek."

Stephen said...

Thanks for the feedback.

Barb said...

This helps me a lot. Endure to the end at one time seemed so easy to me. And at one time I dreaded that phrase so much as I could hardly bear the present let alone imagine enduring to the end. I like kindness and if that helps us endure then I like it all the better. :)

Téa said...

Thanks for another perspective I needed at 3am.

If I'm struggling with everything else, the idea that I can still be kind is empowering.

Barb said...

I feel like my comments on this thread and also on the mercy thread were so trite considering how much this thread and the thread about mercy has meant to me. The post on mercy and perfection and how they relate is something I have pondered much since reading it. I appreciate it when you go to the effort to have such thoughtful posts. I may not always say it. I love having a place where not only can you read inspirational material, but also have interchanges on what is written rather than just read talks online. The talk on kindness has also given me hope and I have shared this message with someone else struggling. I plan to share it with others as well. Thank you again!