Stoic Wisdom to Help You Handle the Possibility of Disaster

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“The man who has anticipated the coming of troubles takes away their power when they arrive.” — Seneca

The oldest tennis tournament in the world, Wimbledon, has been held at the All England Club in Wimbledon, London, since 1877. Just above the players’ entrance to the Centre Court, the tournament’s main arena, inscribed are two lines from Rudyard Kipling’s “If:”

If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same

There are a lot of things that don’t work in our current society. Our obsession with instant gratification, our desire to fix ourselves by all sorts of means…

But there’s one aspect that is often promoted as a magical solution to all our problems, when in fact is a double-edged sword.

Visualization.

Believe you can, think about it, over and over again, and you’re halfway there. 

Visualizing triumph is easy.

But what about disaster?

What about visualizing the worst-case scenario? When everything that can go wrong does go wrong?

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The One Question You Should Always Ask Yourself Before Pursuing a Goal

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Goals are essential to our happiness. Working towards a worthy goal ensures that we live a life that is meaningful and fulfilling.

If so, why do we fail at most of our goals? Why do we struggle with motivation?

If our vision of the future is so compelling, if we know why we want it, if we know how to get it, then why do we struggle to do it?

I believe it all comes down to the fact that we never ask ourselves this simple question, a question that perhaps you don’t even want to think about, let alone answer.

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5 Life-Changing Lessons from Steve Jobs

“If today were the last day of your life, would you want to do what you are about to do today?”

Steve Jobs

Jobs asked this question in his 2005 Stanford Commencement Address. He told the audience that he looked in the mirror every morning and asked himself that question, and whenever the answer was “no” for many days in a row, he knew something had to change.

This simple habit reveals a person who was incredibly passionate, disciplined, a true visionary, one who wanted to conquer the world, no matter yet.

Looking at yourself in the mirror, asking a question we all dread means that you are ready to carpe diem, as the Romans used to say. You are ready to do live each day as if it were your last, because one day you’ll most certainly be right.

This brings us to the first lesson we can learn from the genius co-founder of Apple.

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If You Want It, You’ve Got to Act As if It’s Already Yours

Photo by Amy Hirschi on Unsplash

There’s this fun experiment I’d often try with folks. I’d ask them to imagine themselves winning the lottery.

They’d tell me all the things they’d do with the money, all the places they’d travel to, all the stuff they’d buy.

It was then that I’d ask them to tell me how they’d feel. Would they act differently? Would they talk differently? What about they way they’d carry themselves? Their demeanor, the way they’d walk? Would that change as well.

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Your Success Is Determined by The Story You Tell Yourself

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We think we are made of skin and flesh and muscle and bones, but that’s not true. We are made of stories, of hope, of dust and stardust, and it is in our nature to always tell stories.

Yes, you might not be a writer, you might not be a blogger, but you are telling yourself the story of who you are, and why you are who you are, and maybe, just maybe, the story of why someone like you has to be.

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