I used to do long-distance running and whenever I hit a wall, I would think of Haruki Murakami quoting Guatama Buddha on the difference between inevitable and optional: ‘Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional.
‘Say you’re running and you start to think, Man this hurts, I can’t take it anymore. The hurt part is an unavoidable reality, but whether or not you can stand any more is up to [you].'
Here are ten more inevitables and an optional mindset with which you can meet each of them.
- Inevitable: Aging. Optional: Maturity.
- Inevitable: Change. Optional: Growth.
- Inevitable: Grief. Optional: Self-pity.
- Inevitable: Taxes. Optional: Contribution.
- Inevitable: Love. Optional: Loving.
- Inevitable: Anger. Optional: Temper.
- Inevitable: Fear. Optional: Courage.
- Inevitable: Failure. Optional: Flexibility.
- Inevitable: Challenge. Optional: Learning
- Inevitable: Death. Optional: Creative living.