There Is Nothing Outside Of Yourself That Can Ever Enable You To Get Better

There is nothing outside of yourself that can ever enable you to get better
graphic © eminentlyquotable.com | photo – Wikipedia

“There is nothing outside of yourself that can ever enable you to get better, stronger, richer, quicker, or smarter. Everything is within. Everything exists. Seek nothing outside of yourself.”Miyamoto Musashi

Miyamoto Musashi (1584-1645) was a Japanese warrior and considered to be the greatest swordsman of his era – famed for being undefeated in 61 duels. He was a rōnin – which is a name given to a samurai who had become masterless – due to the death of his Master. However the title of rōnin was a dishonorable one, as a samurai was expected to commit seppuku upon the loss of his Master. The rōnin thus became a kind of wandering warrior, often either becoming a mercenary or criminal.

Curiously, in addition to his life as a wandering fighter, Musashi was also highly regarded as a philosopher. His text “The Book Of Five Rings” is still widely read and he is considered by many to be one of the essential authors on the topics of strategy, stoicism and self-reliance. Our chosen quote illustrates well these qualities, encouraging the person seeking self-improvement to look within. In the modern era this kind of thinking is rather popular and comes under the self-help category of “shifting your mindset”.

In the words of Yogi Bhajan, “You are very powerful, provided you know how powerful you are.” A person who looks within herself and takes on the task of knowing herself fully is a force to be reckoned with. We all want to be that person yet we’re too afraid to be courageous. Without courage to try the impossible, our self-confidence stagnates.

From the Latin word “fidere” which means “to trust,” self-confidence is the antithesis of self-doubt. A person with self-doubt thinks that she is too small for her big dreams, and she ends up being exactly what she thinks she is-a failure. As she goes through life dodging opportunities and challenges, she will never know what she’s really capable of.

We may think that we’re looking within ourselves but what we’re really concerned of are the opinions of people. The fear of failure stems from our need to look “respectable,” a trait we develop as we transition from childhood. Because we fear how people see us, how the people we admire would react if we fail, we hide from our true selves. Instead of looking within and knowing ourselves better, we cower in fear at how people look at us.

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