If you have anger issues, this one is a great tool (h/t mindyourbusiness)
Disclaimer: I’m not your Supervisor. These are my opinions after reading through these books a few times.
“Never shirk the proper dispatch of your duty, no matter if you are freezing or hot, groggy or well-rested, vilified or praised, not even if dying or pressed by other demands. Even dying is one of the
important assignments of life and, in this as in all else, make the most of your resources to do well the duty at hand.”
—MARCUS AURELIUS, MEDITATIONS, 6.2
I need to do what needs done, and nobody cares how I feel. If I don’t sleep enough, I still need to get up and go running. Just because I had a long day at work, that doesn’t mean I go home instead of the gym. I would like to relax this weekend, but I need to mow the grass and my wife’s car needs new struts. When I was stuck on the couch, I still had to do my best at being an invalid, that meant not hurting myself by trying to do too much too fast. It also meant making sure to thank my wife and not let my frustrations out on her.
“The task of a philosopher: we should bring our will into harmony with whatever happens, so that nothing happens against our will and nothing that we wish for fails to happen.”
—EPICTETUS, DISCOURSES, 2.14.7
I did not wish for my wife’s car to blow up. That was outside of my control, so I tried not to get upset about it. I also had to not get irritated at my wife driving my car, she can drive a manual, but she is not smooth with the gear changes and hills make her nervous so she over revs the engine. Instead I tried to remember how fortunate we are that we have extra vehicles and she can use it as an opportunity to improve her 5-speed skills. I know more things will go against me in the future, and will try to not let it affect me. If I have something bothering me, I need to look at myself and figure out how to keep my equilibrium.
“Protect your own good in all that you do, and as concerns everything else take what is given as far as you can make reasoned use of it. If you don’t, you’ll be unlucky, prone to failure, hindered and stymied.”
—EPICTETUS, DISCOURSES, 4.3.11
It’s important to keep myself in a good mood. If I am making good decisions and actually doing the things I tell myself I want to do, it is easier to maintain that state of mind. If I do not do these things, I will end up angry at myself. When I am not happy with myself, it is easier to do dumb things and make it harder to get myself back on track.
“Good people will do what they find honorable to do, even if it requires hard work; they’ll do it even if it causes them injury; they’ll do it even if it will bring danger. Again, they won’t do what they find base, even if it brings wealth, pleasure, or power. Nothing will deter them from what is honorable, and nothing will
lure them into what is base.”
—SENECA, MORAL LETTERS, 76.18
I try to be a good person and do the “right” thing. It doesn’t matter if anyone sees it or knows about it. All of my choices are pretty easy for me to make in that regard. When I was younger and I tried to be a little more morally flexible, I would always end up hating myself and the reward was never worth it.
“On those mornings you struggle with getting up, keep this thought in mind—I am awakening to the work of a human being. Why then am I annoyed that I am going to do what I’m made for, the very things for which I was put into this world? Or was I made for this, to snuggle under the covers and keep warm? It’s so pleasurable. Were you then made for pleasure? In short, to be coddled or to exert yourself?”
—MARCUS AURELIUS, MEDITATIONS, 5.1
It is a lot easier to get up on time if I sleep enough. Those days when I don’t sleep enough, it is hard to get out of bed. When I am lazy and lay there for a while, I don’t gain anything. I am still tired and now I have to hurry so I won’t be late for work.When I am in bed fighting with myself, this passage reminds me to be a grownup, not a child.
“This is what you should teach me, how to be like Odysseus—how to love my country, wife and father, and how, even after suffering shipwreck, I might keep sailing on course to those honorable ends.”
—SENECA, MORAL LETTERS, 88.7b
The lessons we learn from stories can be important. Even if it comes from a fictional hero, perseverance and strength of character are worth emulating. One of my early examples for honesty was the lead players in Louis L’Amour books.
“Enough of this miserable, whining life. Stop monkeying around! Why are you troubled? What’s new here? What’s so confounding? The one responsible? Take a good look. Or just the matter itself?
Then look at that. There’s nothing else to look at. And as far as the gods go, by now you could try being more straightforward and kind. It’s the same, whether you’ve examined these things for a hundred years, or only three.”
—MARCUS AURELIUS, MEDITATIONS, 9.37
I woke up angry last weekend. I was late for a self imposed deadline to get started working in the garage, I hadn’t slept well, I was hungry, and my wife wanted me to take her out shopping instead.(she doesn’t like driving my car) Luckily I was in the kitchen and she was in the living room when she asked me, so she didn’t see my immediate reaction. I thought about it for a few minutes and realized there was nothing in the garage that couldn’t wait until Sunday and if I took her out we could stop for lunch. We ended up having a good day and I could have started an argument or made her go by herself. When I really looked at what was causing the anger, it was me.
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Music this week is Candlemass, they are a doom metal band from Sweden and most people hate them. They have an opera singer and slow riffs, but you don’t have to be fast to be heavy.
Their first album had a more traditional singer .
After that they got the opera singer, probably my favorite song: At the Gallow’s End
I know they are not for everyone, but I like them, their first 4 albums are amazing, after that they got a different singer and lost some of their uniqueness.