14 July 2011

Quote for today on self-reliance

A man is a lion in his own cause. – Scottish proverb
This saying is a good reminder that other people have their own concerns and priorities, and so can't be expected to give your wants and needs the attention that you feel they deserve.

Whether it's fixing things around your home or getting proper medical care for a chronic ailment, you are ultimately the one responsible for ensuring that your needs are met to your satisfaction.

It's not that others don't care, or won't help. There's often people who are compassionate and will do what they can. It's just that their assistance is usually given within the context of their relationship with you. Consider the above examples:

Faced with a leak in the middle of the night, a plumber will certainly help you, but may only be available on their schedule. That's no good if your basement's filling with water. Your high priority is fixing the leak; the plumber's priority might be getting some sleep, or making extra money for coming in off-hours. It's up to you to champion the cause and get the problem solved. Here, self-reliance likely means fixing it yourself (or at least stopping the leak), assuming you have the tools and ability.

If you have chronic arthritis, you can visit any number of medical specialists, and they'll all offer some advice and/or medication... sometimes running counter to one another. You want some relief; the experts may mean well and have the intent to give it to you. However, your best results are probably going to be found by  educating yourself about the ailment, and then finding a professional you can work with to help. Here, self-reliance doesn't automatically mean "doing it yourself." But, it does mean taking the responsibility for your situation and driving the treatment plan(s), rather than being the passive recipient of whatever the experts do or don't do for you.

What about you? How have you been the lion for your own cause?

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