Question: How can I prevent getting upset or depressed over small things, such as a car break-down or a screaming child?/

Sri Chinmoy: In the material world, whatever we handle, we should try to keep in perfect condition. If we are using an old car, naturally this may create problems. Even new cars sometimes give trouble. But we should always try to use a perfect instrument. Since we are trying to be perfect instruments of the Supreme, the things that we handle should also have perfection in them. Just as we cry and try for perfection of our own nature, whatever is our possession should also be perfect according to our standard. So the things that we are utilising as our instruments must be kept in perfect condition. But we have to know that in spite of the fact that something appears perfect, it often is not. And if it causes problems, does depression help us in any way? Never.

We must always be wise. A wise man will take an unfortunate happening as a challenge, an opportunity to face an unpleasant reality with a cheerful smile. A fool will curse his fate and will curse others. He will feel that this kind of misfortune only happens to him. A wise person will simply say, "Here I have another opportunity to conquer my anger or my depression." Every experience in life can be meaningful and beneficial if we accept it properly.

Now, when a child is screaming, what should we do? Immediately remember that his screaming is not stronger than your inner poise. Then try to bring forward your inner poise and let it drown out the screaming of the child. Every time you see something irritating or undivine, accept the challenge and conquer it. If you allow it to conquer you, you are bound to become upset or depressed.