A man who becomes conscious of the responsibility he bears toward a human being who affectionately waits for him, or to an unfinished work, will never be able to throw away his life.
He knows the “why” for his existence, and will be able to bear almost any “how.”
Can you imagine finding meaning from the suffering found in a Holocaust camp? Viktor Frankl did.
Before WWII, he was a respected psychiatrist, but as a Jew, he was a subhuman to be treated with the most imaginable cruelty. And yet, Frankl found meaning in his suffering, and that meaning helped him survive.
In part, Frankl found meaning by helping others find meaning. He would counsel those contemplating suicide or who had lost the will to live and help them discover that there was a reason to continue on. For one fellow prisoner, his reason to live was for his young child, and for another prisoner it was a series of scientific books he needed to write. “In both cases,” Frankl writes, “it was a question of getting them to realize that life was still expecting something from them; something in the future was expected of them.”
Give, because someone or something is waiting for you, too. A family member, a friend, a love who you haven’t met yet. A book, a painting, a business, or raising your children. Someone or something is waiting for you, and he/she/they/it expects you to keep giving of your time and talent until you make it.
We’re waiting for you.