August 7, 2012 at 6:14 am, by Carl
I have long enjoyed words and some years ago, started getting the “Word of the Day” from Webster’s website. Still enjoy learning new words and looking for ways to put them into my vocabulary. Here are two words that can help illuminate two possible paths for you this summer. Life often consists of choosing between two paths; how we determine to move forward is critical to our success. We can go down the path of the querulous or we can among the diligent.
Querulous means “habitually complaining” or to be whining. This word has been in use since the latter Middle Ages. That Middle English form of the word “querelose” was an adaptation from the Latin “querulus.” That word came from the Latin verb “queri” which meant to complain; it is also the parent word of quarrel. So, is this you? Do you see life as a perpetual negative so that almost everything that comes out of your mouth is whining? How have you adapted to the challenges around you?
Often the worst thing you can do is start to complain. After a while, if you aren’t complaining, you don’t know what else to say. Here’s the problem with that path—usually others grow tired of being around you. Want to keep your job? Don’t be the complainer who always has a negative thing to say when the boss gives out assignments or when a customer asks you questions. Want to position yourself for a better classroom experience? Don’t be querulous about your assignments, your workload or the classroom activities. In both cases, your negative energy will soon be evident to all and you will be persona non grata. That’s bad in the classroom and a quick trip to the unemployment line in the work world.
So, if not the querulous path, then what? How about the path of the diligent? Diligent means to be “characterized by steady, earnest and energetic effort.” YES! That is the path of success. Interesting that diligent is connected in its etymology to love. The word came to English around the 1300s from the French (remember, at that time, the nobility on the island spoke French not English), through the Latin verb “diligere” which means to “value or esteem highly” or even “to love.” The point is easy to see….affection can lead to energetic effort.
Of course, you don’t have to love the task at hand to be diligent, but can you see the real connection? Look at homework….most would say quickly “oh, I don’t love homework.” But, do you love your dream? Does your dream demand this degree? If yes, then does the degree demand this class for these credits? If yes, then you should LOVE the homework and have no problem being diligent about doing the work.
Or, what about the job? You might think that there are several aspects of the job that you find distasteful, but think about it this way—-do you love getting your paycheck? I do! So, then I should LOVE the work assignments and have no problem being diligent about them.
Choose the Right Path
So, which path for you? Querulous or Diligent?
In the end, you don’t want to put your success in jeopardy (“exposure to or imminence of death, loss, or injury : danger”) through temerity (“unreasonable or foolhardy contempt of danger or opposition”) about how querulous you have been. Instead, you want to find that others see you as chivalrous (“high standard of character and conduct typically associated with gallant knights”) as you protect the purview (“the range of authority, competence, responsibility, concern, or intention”) of your dreams of success by how diligent you have been with your work.
Check it out….I just gave you four more new words!!