There are so many stoic life lessons worth living by. But before going into them, I’d love introducing you to Stoicism.
Stoicism teaches how to keep calm no matter the circumstances. It makes you focus on what you can control and accept the many things you can’t actually directly control. The main idea is that your mind will never leave you, the more you can work with it and train it, the wiser & happier you’re going to become.
This philosophy reflects on enjoying all the aspects of life and living worry-free. Moreover, being able to acknowledge and be grateful for whatever life throws at you is an incredible practice. If you start living your life by stoic lessons, you will be able to always keep your head up, look and feel confident and achieve a positive mindset.
Let’s get straight to the point and find out which 10 stoic life lessons are worth living by!
1. Prepare for future failures
For by foreseeing anything that can happen as though it will happen he will soften the onslaught of all his troubles.
Seneca wrote this statement in order to explain that everyone should expect failures in life – it’s just the way life is. However, once these storms appear in your journey, you should be able to overcome them strategically to maintain your life at peace. You should be brave enough to endure the thought of failure or disappointment. If you’re well prepared for the worst, then you won’t feel like you have no choice; you’ll get to apply plan B or C. Think about it, if you already know that it’s going to rain today and decide to take an umbrella with you JUST IN CASE, you’ve already seen the worse that can happen and prepared for it. Apply this type of thinking to everyday events and you’ll live more peacefully.
2. Face your fears
He who fears death will never do anything worthy of a living man.
In this saying, Seneca brings something very powerful to our attention. He explains that a man who fears everything in life, including death will never be able to enjoy his / her presence on earth. Moreover, the ones who live in fear won’t get the chance to do something remarkable in their lives. Being able to take risks and to enjoy every moment at its highest potential will only bring you positivity, success and happiness. Face your fears and start living in order to be truly ALIVE.
3. Stop waiting
How long are you going to wait before you demand the best for yourself?
Epictetus said it better than everyone could! In life, you should know exactly how worthy you are. Therefore, why staying in the darkness, waiting for the light to come when you can demand it yourself? Only you have the power to change your life and to make it as good as possible. Only accept the best for yourself – you only have one life. If you don’t believe you truly deserve it, than why anyone would?
4. Don’t take anything for granted
You could leave life right now. Let that determine what you do and say and think.
Marcus Aurelius wanted to make everyone understand that life shouldn’t be taken for granted. Maybe tomorrow you won’t have the possibility to say to that one person how much you actually love them. Maybe tomorrow you won’t get the chance to go running, to say that joke, to make a tattoo, to even say sorry. Start living your life like there is no tomorrow and enjoy every single second of it.
5. Past, present and future
Life is very short and anxious for those who forget the past, neglect the present, and fear the future.
You will never be able to enjoy your life at its fullest if you “forget the past, neglect the present and fear the future”. Why so? Well, Seneca believed that if you forget your roots and where you come from, if you don’t take responsibility of your present actions and you always live with the fear of the future you’ll not be able to be truly be alive. It is important for a human being to comprehend time at its true value. Therefore, if you don’t start realising the difference between past, present and future and you live with continuous fear, you are not living life at its fullest.
6. Life is a bumpy ride
A gem cannot be polished without friction, nor a man perfected without trials.
Through this quote Seneca wanted to explain how a man can never achieve success without having some challenges along the way. There is no such thing as a clear road ahead because life is truly a bumpy ride. Therefore, you should face every challenge with positivity and always do your best. In the end, if you work hard and don’t stop believing you will achieve the success you’re dreaming of.
7. Keep calm
If you are easily provoked you are easily controlled.
It’s true that if a person can’t keep a clam mind, they can be “easily controlled”. If you start training your mind to stay calm and find peace, you will be able to focus on the really important aspects of life. You will understand that fighting or arguing will not get you anywhere. Being able to control your emotions is a sign of strength. Work for it and in the end claim it as one of your traits.
8. If you seek change, start with yourself
Waste no more time arguing what a good man should be, be one.
Marcus Aurelius explained the importance of always starting the change with yourself. We all have a theory of what a good man should be, but action speaks louder than words. Start living as a good person today and each time you notice a negative thought entering your mind, remember your new approach to life.
9. Enjoy life till the very end
Life is a shipwreck, but we must not forget to sing in the lifeboats.
This quote by Voltaire is one of my very favourites. It reminds me how important it is to enjoy every second of my life. Seizing the day is one of the most important secrets in life. Carpe diem, right?
10. Do it for yourself
Why should we pay so much attention to what the majority thinks?
I find this quote by Socrates so resembling to the modern society we live in. You only have one life, therefore you should do what makes YOU happy, you should follow your instincts and stop paying so much attention of outside opinions. You are the captain to your ship and the road you want to follow is your choice!
These stoic life lessons represent how I’ve decided to live my life. I found peace and happiness in them and I’m forever grateful. I hope you’ve found inspiration in this article and that we are ready to seize the day together!
Until next time,