The greatest way to live with honor in this world is to be what we pretend to be.
Humans can (proudly?) claim to be the most – and probably the only – hypocritical species on the planet. We tend to spend our entire lives pretending to be someone we aren’t. Even more unfortunate is the fact that we keep lying not just to the people around us, but even to ourselves about who we truly are.
We spend our lives proclaiming ideals that we seldom replicate in our own lives. We ask things of others that we are incapable of or unwilling to offer ourselves. This discrepancy between our words and actions becomes the perfect breeding ground for mistrust. We gradually lose the respect we previously commanded. People begin to stop taking our words seriously. And this not only distances us from our near and dear ones, but also from the greatness we all are destined to achieve.
However, things do not have to be that way. If only we can become the persons we claim to be, life would be so much simpler. Granted, it’s easier said than done, but most worthwhile things in life don’t come easy. Lofty ideals would cease to be so venerated if everyone could adopt them in their lives. It takes a lot of courage, practice and hard work to walk the talk. Besides, what better way to inspire people than by leading by example? This not only motivates our peers, juniors and kids to follow in our footsteps, but also reinforces their belief in the things we say. Remember, words often fail to convey what actions effortlessly do.
Socrates was an ancient Greek philosopher. Widely acknowledged as the founder of Western philosophy, Socrates once commented: “The greatest way to live with honor in this world is to be what we pretend to be.”