PURSUIT OF CALM #48
Strategies To Become Your Best Possible Self
Part 2.

How much of our time, focus and energy is squandered being consumed in the affairs of others?
How much of our energy is wasted on finding fault with, or opposing others.
Whether in our work life, home life, social surroundings, or where we expense our attention in our leisure time – how much of our investment in other peoples business is getting in our own way?
Our attention should be kept focused entirely on what is truly our own concern and within our control – whilst being mindful that what belongs to others is their business, and theirs alone.
The more consistently we can do this, we become increasingly impervious to coercion, and without coercion, we become increasingly freer and more effective because our efforts are focused ‘to good use’ rather than being distracted and squandered elsewhere.

By reminding yourself to practice the principle of attending to only what concerns you and you alone, you nurture your inner-citadel – your sense of tranquility, strength, self-control, self-kindness – and by doing so you become increasingly resilient to do anything against your will; the opinions, actions and regard of others cannot hurt you, nor do you impinge yourself on others…unless you send out dodgy ‘articles’ like this. 

‘Living’ By Your Principles Is Hard.

As Epictetus says ‘living’ means To walk your talk. To reclaim your authentic language and have the strength, passion, courage and commitment to walk it.”

Click here to view a 3min video I put together on Epictetus 

Principles are a conscious act, and for them to become effective in our day to day – which is exactly where we want them, not just an archived thought in the boon-dock of our brain – then we need to both remind ourselves to practice, and, actually practice. Practice, consistent practice that is, requires lots of energy, energy that is gleaned from sacrifice and patience, both of which are resourced from our lifestyle choices.

If we’re stressed, fatigued, inebriated, insatiable and distracted, practicing (anything) consistently is a near on impossibility. In fact the only consistency in our life when we’re  stressed, fatigued, inebriated, insatiable and distracted, is the ease of which it is to consistently repeat the behaviours that keep us stressed, fatigued, inebriated, insatiable and distracted.

So, if your aim is to live by such principles, then you’ll need to begin the arduous journey by sacrificing the very behavioursthat are making you tired, drunk, compulsive and impulsive. To, in effect, ‘plug the energy leaks’ so that you can reclaim & harvest the energy required to recalibrate & identify your intentions (what do I want?), to improve your attention (how am I going to do it?) and manifest the required physical and mental strength (how am I going to perform consistent action?). Without this alignment, then living by our principles, and thus ‘living a good life’ will be, at best, challenging.

Lastly, and speaking directly from my own experience, living a principled-life also may (does) mean that you have to sacrifice other things – you may need to forego wealth, status, social standing & friends if you truly want to (begin) attaining the freedom and vitality you aspire to have – for if it is these things that are in fact a distraction and keeping you a slave to decades long, tired behaviours then maybe, as hard as it is, they’re worth excluding from one’s life.

Our lives, the reality we live in, are spent at work, at home, in social surroundings, and at our leisure – and if we allow these environments to coerce our state of mind and hinder our vitality (energy) then we’re both squandering what finite amount of time we have left, and our ability to focus on what is truly of our concern and within our control.

Our freedom, our health & vitality, our inner-tranquility, is found not in trying to change the environment, but how we view and respond to it.
Luke
🙏

 

Next: Prescriptions For A Good Life