I was having a difficult time at work recently. Unhappy boss, unmet expectations, creeping self-doubt. Piling deadlines. Everything was stressing me out. All in all really negative.
And then, at home, we’ve been dealing with a new baby. Now this is not a negative. Far from it; it’s incredibly positive and Baby Neve has a smile that sends shockwaves right through my soul. But it also causes sleepless nights, more friction in the relationship, and is a great contributor to a general sense of feeling rundown.
Anyway, as these time-consuming areas of my life were putting on pressure, it started to get to me. I was feeling really down. Unhealthy and unhappy. That doesn’t happen often. But it does happen.
During a long bike ride to work I was listening to a podcast from the Art of Manliness on Hiking with Nietschze. It was an enjoyable and edifying conversation with philosophy professor and author John Kaag.
And it touched upon a piece of Nietzschean wisdom that was sorely needed at that moment in my life.
Amor Fati is a Latin phrase that may be translated as “love of fate” or “love of one’s fate”. As Nietzsche said, “My formula for human greatness is amor fati: that one wants nothing to be different, not in the future, not in the past, not for all eternity.”
And I’m feeling that sentiment: the acceptance of things as they are no matter how they are. That’s not about accepting things that aren’t good or settling for injustice, but simply accepting our fate. No, loving our fate.
I feel it.
And at this point in time, this little piece of wisdom helped me get my head back on the right way around and refocus my energies at work and at home. Not coincidentally, that’s around the time that things started turning around. I refocused on the important and urgent areas of work. Dove deeper into my familial responsibilities, started sleeping better and — surprise surprise — I also started feeling better.
That’s the power of loving your fate.