Stoicism has gotten a bad rap.
These days, when people think “stoic,” they think “emotionless.” “Indifferent to pleasure and pain” is now literally a definition of the word “stoic.”
That’s not what the Stoics were going for.
For the Stoics, the goal is not to avoid all emotion. It is to minimize negative emotion. I can see where people get confused, though.
I am often accused (usually jokingly, but often enough to take the hint) of being emotionless.
I disagree with this assessment. I feel plenty of emotions. I just try not to dwell on negative emotions.
And I try not to act on them, either. Continue reading “How to Control (and Minimize) Negative Emotions”
My grandfather passed away recently. It has been a tough few years for my family, but we have felt a lot of love and support from each other as well as from our community and network of friends.
My cousin gave an excellent eulogy at the funeral. One thing that he noted is that Papa has been insisting that every encounter with him could be the last for years. For at least the last decade, he has insisted that he is almost out of time. Continue reading “Death and Happiness”
There is often a great power in quotes.
When someone can distill an idea or a philosophy into a short, memorable collection of words, it can become a kind of mantra for people. It can be a reminder of how they want to live their life and how to be their best selves.
One example of this is the Serenity Prayer. Continue reading “The Things We Cannot Change”
In looking into ways of dealing with disappointment we explored the Stoic practice of imagining the things that could go wrong in our lives. This is a great tool for helping us blunt the painful feeling of disappointment that accompanies loss.
However, this is not the only benefit to this practice.
Continue reading “The Ancient Art of Being Thankful for What We Have”
There has been a lot of ink spilled discussing the results of the recent presidential election here in the States. I’m going to add to it today.
You can relax, though, because I will not be talking about politics directly.
Instead, I want to talk about dealing with loss and disappointment. Continue reading “Dealing with Disappointment”
I studied Stoicism before it was cool.
Okay, cool might be a bit of a stretch. It has gotten a lot more attention over the last few years, though.
Tim Ferris adopted it as his operating system. Ryan Holliday wrote a book about it that was adopted by pro sports teams. It has even made its way into the financial independence blogosphere. Continue reading “Why Do Bad Things Happen to Good People?”