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The Daily Vulnerable by Chude Jideonwo: Sadness



When I began to learn about living a joyful life, I would find myself ashamed whenever I was sad. Almost as if I was failing a lesson I should already have learned, and failing those who were learning those lessons from me.

I was increasingly much happier than I had ever been ever in my life, but even a little sadness felt like a failure. I would fight it, I would argue with it, I would spend time worrying about it.

But then over time, wisdom came, and I learned that sadness is part of living a joyful life. Like I teach at the masterclasses, you can’t be joyful if you don’t know how to be sad. When you lose someone you love, when a dream doesn’t come through when people do hurtful things. It’s all part of the human experience. It’s not the sadness that matters. It’s what you do with it, how you handle it, where it takes you to.

When sad things happen, embrace the emotions that come, accept the reality, process them in the light of our common human condition, and from there you will make the climb to a place of peace, and contentment and perspective.

I am trying to say that sadness is part of being human. As long as you continue living a life of vulnerability, authenticity, and compassion, however, it is most likely to go in a little time after its arrival.

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Jideonwo is a storyteller, using the research and evidence on human flourishing to inspire new narratives about politics, markets, faith, identity and society in Africa. He is a co-founder of RED, which he ran for 13 years before stepping down in December 2017. One of its companies, StateCraft Inc. handled communication for the Muhammadu Buhari campaign in 2015 and has worked in elections in Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, and Sierra Leone.


  1. Theresa

    October 28, 2018 at 5:18 pm

    Very insightful! The tendency is to attempt to run away from sadness or to suppress it, but acceptance brings clarity and better decision making. Thanks Chude.

  2. Fizzy

    October 29, 2018 at 11:02 am

    Dream come true or through? I believe it’s dream come “true”

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