The Thought for the Day – Agatha Christie

But all the same, I simply can’t imagine his thinking the world would be able to get on without him. – Agatha Christie, Dead Man’s Mirror


Agatha Christie (1890-1976) was a British writer, primarily known for her mystery stories, though she wrote other things, too. It is estimated Christie trails only Shakespeare and the Bible in number of books published and Christie actually caused a mystery of her own when she disappeared for ten days in 1926. She was having a spat with her soon-to-be-divorced husband and was holed up in a hotel under the name of her husband’s lover. Today’s Thought concerns reasons why the murder victim would never kill himself.

It’s OK to have a high opinion of yourself. It’s healthy to admit you do something well, perhaps better than most, because false modesty only serves those who have nothing to be modest about.

But that confidence must come from within and is only gained after many years of diligence and effort. It is gained as the early failures that attend any great effort are replaced by more and more successes. Among its other yields, success provides a wonderful dividend of confidence.

Confidence coming from without, however, as the result of purely external factors such as the rewards you might earn is not confidence at all but merely cockiness, which does not do you or your fellow humans much good.

When you are on your path, when you are living the life you were meant to live you will, perhaps without really realizing it, become good at some things. Because if you are on your path you are utilizing, and maximizing, the talents you were born with. Invariably you enjoy this and in time your skill turns into mastery.

It’s good to acknowledge this, if only to yourself. There is seldom any need to burden others with this knowledge.

I simply can’t imagine his thinking the world would be able to get on without him…

Again, you do not want to be cocky. You do not want to go around beaming certainty that the world would not get along without you. That will make you annoying because, plainly, the world will get on without us and the sun will still rise the day after we’ve died.

But, after many years of diligence, patience and, perhaps, accomplishment, it’s OK to suspect it, even if we know it’s not true. 

The Thought for the Day runs regularly. Quotes are from Gaylon’s private stock.

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