Four Liberating Sentences – Estadão

Luiz Henrique Lima. Photograph: Disclosure

Sometimes a sentence or a scene from a movie that we watch for entertainment can inspire valuable thoughts. Sometimes a gesture in a sports competition can reveal a good example of the values ​​of solidarity, empathy, etc.

I happened to read a detective novel. I’m a big fan of crime novels. I read classics to little-known African and Asian authors.

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While reading a book by Louise Penny, a Canadian author whose style and characters enchant me, I came across the passage that inspired this article: four liberating sentences.

Here is the context in which they appeared. That’s when Quebec’s Chief Homicide Inspector, Armand Gamache, interviews a new recruit and says, “There are four sentences that lead to wisdom. I’ll only say them once and you can do whatever you want with them.

The sentences are: I don’t know. I failed. My excuses. Need help.

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How many times in our lives would we need to say one of these phrases and we didn’t? Why didn’t we? Out of pride? To fear? Shame? Anyone who does not utter them becomes a prisoner of these feelings.

I don’t know. Who can say that he does not need this sentence? There are those who think they know everything or want others to believe it. Pride prevents them from recognizing how much they still have to learn.

I failed. Who has never made a mistake? Admitting a mistake is a condition for beginning the journey of trying to get it right. On the other hand, not admitting it is another serious mistake, because it leads to intellectual paralysis and to repeating this mistake many times, multiplying its damage.

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My excuses. Who doesn’t owe someone an apology? But apologizing cannot be a formal, dry, cold gesture. Apologizing is sincerely trying to fix or compensate for the pain or damage we have caused someone because of our lack of foresight.

Need help. Who doesn’t need help in one or more aspects of their personal or professional life? And those who do not ask for help will hardly receive it, because it is not always easy for those who can help to guess that this person is in need.

If necessary, do not hesitate to say: I do not know. I failed. My excuses. Need help.

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When the person manages to say these sentences, it means that they have freed themselves. He won pride and defeated humility. Overcome fear and gain courage. She overcame vanity, shame and self-sufficiency and showed herself to be sincere, human, humble, with weaknesses and limits that brought her closer to her peers. Only then can we open ourselves to give and receive solidarity, friendship and love.

Only honest, courageous, humble and selfless people have the maturity and morality to utter these four liberating phrases. If you succeed, you are on the right track.

*Luiz Henrique Lima is a writer and teacher

Benjamin Allen

"Evil pop culture fanatic. Extreme bacon geek. Food junkie. Thinker. Hipster-friendly travel nerd. Coffee buff."

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