Voltaire on the Most Courageous Decision Each Day
Tuesday Quotes are short explorations of music, life, and the daily endeavor of practicing classical guitar. Find more here. Enjoy!
“The most courageous decision that you can make each day is to be in a good mood.”Voltaire
Learning guitar can be like taking a part-time job as a punching bag.
We seek challenges and strive to meet them. And this means constant difficulty and failure.
The difficulties are chosen, and the failures are small. But we still have to contend with them.
If we’re not careful, we can slip into patterns of negative self-talk. In our heads, we may whine and grumble. We may pine and woe. We may argue and fuss.
And these responses feel safe. They bolster our egos. After all, it’s not “me” at fault – it’s “my hands” or “my mind” or “my ________”.
When we criticize, we take the high ground and feel superior. We point the finger and somehow feel better.
So all the inner cussing is a defense mechanism for our egos.
But what other option do we have? After all, everybody does it, right?….
Perhaps a more useful attitude is: “Wow, this is harder than I thought. Yippee!” We embrace the challenge and know that success is (eventually) inevitable.
Author Brené Brown says that joy is the most vulnerable emotion. And to be vulnerable, even alone in a room with our music, takes an element of bravery.
This is why Voltaire calls optimism courageous. And he also names being in a good mood a decision.
Trial and error are necessary parts of the learning process. It’s a package deal.