serenity prayer
Encouragement/Self-Help / Faith

Serenity Prayer

One of my life’s mantras is the first verse of the Serenity Prayer by Reinhold Niebuhr:

‘God grant me

The serenity to accept the things I cannot change 

The courage to change the things I can 

And the wisdom to know the difference.’

serenity prayer

When I was younger, I would sometimes become bothered about things that I had no control over and I know many of us do this. However, as I got older, I learned not to allow the things that I can’t control to control me. Instead, I choose to focus on the things that are within my control. There is so much power and freedom in that. The key is being able to recognize what you can and cannot control.

Naturally, when things go wrong, as they sometimes will, yes of course in the immediate aftermath you may be frustrated and disappointed. However, once that initial feeling passes, it’s better to focus on how to move forward and if necessary, how to solve the problem. Instead of focusing on the problem, spend your time and energy finding solutions. 

serenity prayer

“Don’t sweat the small stuff”. A good rule of thumb is to consider whether or not the situation you are dealing with now will still matter in five years. If it will still matter, then the issue is important and requires your attention. If not, maybe you don’t need to make a big deal out of it – just let it go. Life is short; spend your time doing things that bring you joy.

serenity prayer

Interestingly, one of the biggest mistakes that people make is in thinking that they can change other people. This is a classic example of something you cannot control. Hear me when I say this, you can never change someone else! Either accept them for who they are or spend your life being miserable trying to change them. Consider this instead, maybe you are the one who needs to change. Maybe you need to change your expectations. Better yet, perhaps instead of trying to change the people around you, maybe you need to change the people around you.

In closing, be reminded of the words of the Serenity Prayer.

‘God grant me

The serenity to accept the things I cannot change 

The courage to change the things I can 

And the wisdom to know the difference.’

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Comments

April 27, 2021 at 8:52 am

Interestingly, one of the biggest mistakes that people make is in thinking that they can change other people. This is a classic example of something you cannot control. Hear me when I say this, you can never change someone else! Either accept them for who they are or spend your life being miserable trying to change them. Consider this instead, maybe you are the one who needs to change. Maybe you need to change your expectations. Better yet, perhaps instead of trying to change the people around you, maybe you need to change the people around you.

This summed it up beautifully.



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