The Thought for the Day – Nicholas Monserrat

It was an entrance made by a man whose every attitude, from the angle of his jaw to the firm tread of his feet, seemed to proclaim that the room was better for his presence.
Nicholas Monsarrat/A Fair Day’s Work

Nicholas Monsarrat (1910-79) was a British novelist. He originally planned to be a lawyer, but the law bored him and he turned to writing. He served his country honorably in His Majesty’s Navy in World War II, finishing as the commanding officer of the frigate HMS Perim. After the war, he served in His Majesty’s diplomatic Corps before turning to writing full time. Most of his works have something to do with the sea and today’s Thought concerns an aristocrat walking into the cabin of a ship’s commanding officer.

…from the angle of his jaw to the firm tread of his feet,

People will, to an extent that might surprise you, take you at your own reckoning. Those who slump and shuffle their feet and generally give an air of insignificance are generally regarded as insignificant. Those who stand tall and walk firmly are generally held in some regard. This doesn’t mean you strut and act like you are the cock of the walk, but it does mean you are confident in who you are. Confidence of this sort is usually seen in people who know exactly what they are about.

…seemed to proclaim that the room was better for his presence.

If we can make a room better for our presence, we can also make the world better for our presence by knowing exactly what we are about. Knowing what we are about is both easy and hard. On the one hand, it can be difficult to toss aside both outside influences and the expectations others have for us so we can look inside ourselves and determine what our talents and goals are.

On the other hand, a look inside us is all that is required to know what we are about. The answer isn’t anyplace else other than our hearts. It will tell us where to go and our instincts will tell us how to get there.

You might be surprised to see how far following your path might get you. It will give you the confidence that can only be found by knowing you are living the life you are meant to live. It doesn’t matter what that life is, either. All that matters is you are getting the most out of the talents you were issued at birth – life’s great prize – and not squandering them – life’s great tragedy.

A person who knows what he or she is about and has the courage to live the life they were meant to live will always make the world better for their presence.

The Thought for the Day runs regularly. Gaylon began stockpiling quotes in 1988.

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