Indifference

One of the hardest things to do is to see someone else’s fault as a fault, like mine.

My own example is when I am driving and the driver in front does not use his indicators or uses them in the last second. This makes me feel uncomfortable for a few minutes and to imagine a conversation with that driver where I act as a super correct, responsible driver all the time until I make the next turn and forget to use the indicators.

Enters Marcus Aurelius:

“To live a good life: We have the potential for it. If we can learn to be indifferent to what makes no difference.”  — Marcus Aurelius

Indifference sounds a strong word to use and that we should avoid it.

Not always, there are times where indifference is a great helper, it makes us understand that a lot of things that happen don’t make any difference at all! Like when the driver in the car in front forgets to use his indicator for several reasons like we all do!

We act as great drivers, parents, listeners and don’t miss the opportunity to point the finger at someone who made a mistake.

  • A father/mother that is having a bad day and gives his child a slap
  • Someone that uses the cell phone while you are telling them something

If we pay close attention we will be ashamed to see that we all do the same; we all have days when something small (or seemingly insignificant) is enough to make us forget about the indicators, slap our kids or not pay attention to someone else.

Enters Marcus Aurelius again:

“You shouldn’t give circumstances the power to arouse anger, for they don’t care at all.”  — Marcus Aurelius.

And after him, Seneca:

“We suffer more often in imagination than in reality.”  — Seneca

Those two incredible humans said all we need to keep in mind.

Another important point that the Stoics believe is to not worry about things that are outside of our control, we should not be bothered by those, we should not allow those to affect us in any way.

We need to be indifferent to someone else’s faults, things that are out of our control.

Here comes Seneca again:

“You are your choices.”  — Seneca

Be imperturbable!