A Simple, Positive Credo for Life: DESIDERATA



Find Peace in all your Undertakings

What does success mean to you? Is it money in the bank, running a thriving business, spiritual  well-being, or financial security? It is not uncommon that in our quest to provide for our families, climb up the corporate ladder, rise to the top and conquer all challenges along our path to sometimes lose touch of who we are, forgetting those things that are most important to us.

Why is it that so many have driven themselves to the top and then over the top?

Why it is that so many who have attained "great levels of success" have ended up unhappy – in broken relationships, with rebellious kids, lost friendships and so on … lonely and sick on the inside?  What is it that we are ‘chasing’?

I encourage you to find that all too precious balance between financial stability and happiness, that which allows you to enjoy life and provides that inner peace that has eluded so many. We are often taught and trained to become more productive, but few ever encourage or take the time to remind us to feed our souls and blossom inwardly … feeling fulfilled and being at peace with yourself is a feeling the world can neither give nor take away.

Laziness is never rewarded, but a tortured soul is even more of a waste.

Desiderata is a poem that has inspired individuals for centuries. A mysterious piece of writing, author unknown but over the years the writing has been attributed to Max Erhmann. The piece is said to have been found in a church in Baltimore in 1692 by a priest. To me, it is one of the most powerful poems ever written and it has shaped my life since I was a young girl growing up in a catholic girls’ school in Cameroon.

Like they say, Desiderata simply offers a simple positive credo for life.  Enjoy, take it in and be encouraged to find peace in all your undertakings.





Go placidly amid the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence.
As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even the dull and ignorant; they too have their story.

Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit.
If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain and bitter;
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.

Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
Keep interested in your career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs; for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals;
and everywhere life is full of heroism.

Be yourself.
Especially, do not feign affection.
Neither be cynical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass.

Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness. Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself.

You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be,
and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.
With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to be happy.

© Max Ehrmann 1927

What's your favorite phrase or paragraph of the Desiderata poem?



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