Stoic Wisdom to Help You Handle the Possibility of Disaster

Photo by Anthony Tran on Unsplash

“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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Some Days You Can’t Grow Through What You Go Through

Photo by Thought Catalog on Unsplash

There’s a Japanese word that has become synonymous with continuous improvement. 

Kaizen.

It’s a term used to define small, daily improvements. The 1% daily improvement. The compounding effect of such improvements.

It’s a wonderful dream to aspire towards daily improvements. Most of your days should and can be about small, constant, improvement.

But…

There are days when that’s just not possible.

Maybe it’s because of failure or setback, but I find it’s rarely the case. Mostly, it’s because of lack of success.

The daily failure.

Maybe your online store isn’t selling enough products, maybe your content isn’t consumed or appreciated.

It’s not the spectacular failure or rejection that breaks most people, but rather a constant lack of success, of something worthy of celebration.

During those days, the best thing you can do is to simply go through the motions. Yeah, I know you don’t feel like it. And I know you’re sure that nothing good will come of it, but the trick is to do whatever it takes to keep going.

That’s all it takes. If you don’t give up, that’s the kind of success you can be proud of, because that’s exactly when most people quit.

When you feel like throwing in the towel, imagine that almost everyone else but those you admire most quit.

Now, do you want to be like everyone else or do you want to be like those you admire?

Continue reading “Some Days You Can’t Grow Through What You Go Through”

If You Want to Win, You’ve Got to Enjoy Losing

Ever since I released my first novel I’ve had two dreams:

To become the youngest writer to ever be awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature.

To also be awarded an Academy Award.

Almost ten years later, and I’m not even a world-famous or bestselling author, but I’m still here. I am still writing. 

Eight years of almost daily blogging. Eight years.

And, you see, that’s the thing. You see the highlight reel, not the behind the scenes of life. You don’t stumble that often upon the blogs of those who quit after a few months.

As a matter of fact, you can’t find evidence my first blog ever existed. Why? Because I deleted it after publishing three blog posts.

You can’t buy my first book anymore. Why? Because I decided to unpublish it after realizing that it’s a bunch of crap that I shouldn’t even have written in existence, let alone try to sell through Amazon.

I am where I am, a failure or a winner, you decide, because I didn’t give up. I kept punching those damn keys. I am full of wounds but still standing on my feet.

And if you think that I have not failed enough, here are a few of my other failures:

Continue reading “If You Want to Win, You’ve Got to Enjoy Losing”