Step onto the Stoic Path: Discipline Your Judgments

The goal of Stoicism is for you to experience Happiness, eudaimonia. To achieve this you need to live with wisdom, courage, justice, and moderation. In Stoic words: you need to live virtuously.

Unless you're a sage, this is easier said than done.

How to live according to the Stoic virtues? How to get to a more balanced state? Through discipline.

Stoicism is a system to provide us with this discipline and live smarter. One of the most important Stoic insights is that our thinking not only influences our actions but that it also defines our emotions. Not being aware of this causes suffering.

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Step onto the Stoic Path: Focus on the Present Moment

As humans, we can travel in time. Within a split second, we can move to any point in our past, come back to the present, and wander off years into the future. How is this possible?

We do it in our minds, hundreds of times a day.

Mental time travel is a real thing. It’s an aspect of our unique kind of consciousness which has brought us a lot. On the other hand, mental time travel can also screw you up.

The past is something you have no control over. The future is unpredictable and uncertain. The only thing that’s real is the present.

What you do this very second can affect you for years to come. Epictetus said it right:

"When you relax your attention for a little while, do not imagine that whenever you choose you will recover it, but bear this in mind, that because of the mistake which you have made today, your condition must necessarily be worse as regards everything else."

- Epictetus -

The present moment is the soil for the future. If you don’t act wisely now, you will most likely hurt yourself in the future. Without a focus on your present thoughts, emotions, and actions, it becomes damn near impossible to be a Stoic.

Practicing Stoicism means you’re constantly monitoring yourself, and intervening with helpful strategies when you’re about to be swept along by thoughts and emotions.

But focusing on what’s happening to you from moment-to-moment is easier said than done. Having systems that nudge you toward the good is essential. In this article, I'll outline three strategies.

"Those who do not observe the movements of their own minds must of necessity be unhappy.”

- Marcus Aurelius -

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What Is Stoicism? The Goals of Life and Philosophy Explained

Stoicism is a Hellenistic philosophy that's been around for over 2,300 years, and it has the potential to change your life.

Some liken Stoicism to an "operating system" for the mind. It's a philosophy that helps you make better decisions and stay calm, regardless of what happens in life.

And no, being Stoic does not make you emotionless; to the contrary! After reading this article you’ll know what Stoicism has to offer, and how adopting the Stoic worldview can benefit you.

But why should an ancient Greek philosophy interest you? Don’t we have enough philosophies and religions as it is? 

Stoic philosophy is a unique approach to life. It contains wisdom that's been hidden for many Westerners, but that's still alive and kicking in Eastern philosophy.

Yes, Stoicism contains ideas found in other wisdom philosophies like Buddhism and Taoism. How’s that possible? 

It's because ancient Stoic philosophers understood the human mind, and came to similar conclusions as other ancient philosophers around the world.

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Why We All Need a Philosophy for Life

We all need guidance in life.

We're not given a manual when we become adults, yet we're expected to know how to navigate life.

Does anyone wonder why we're in deep shit?

Sure, some may look at a religious text for help. Others are into self-improvement to get the most out of life. But very few people are happy. Their approach to life is not working for them.

How does life feel to you?

Being human, how's that going for you? Do you have any idea what the heck you're doing? Or where you're going in life? Do things work out for you, or do you complain a lot?

Don't feel ashamed, we all screw up.

But what if there's a way to make things better? Little by little, every day, improve our situation and our attitude toward others. And feel better as a result.

Is this possible?

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Welcome to a New Gathering Place, Practicing Stoics!

​For those who have been following me on Twitter for a while: it's good to finally converse with you in more than 280 characters. The launch of this blog has been long overdue, and if you give me about 15 minutes of your time I'll explain why.

This will be a long piece; part background story, part mission statement.

I'll start by introducing myself, and tell a bit about where I grew up, why I became interested in Stoicism, and how I struggled to understand the philosophy. I'll then move on to my analysis of the modern Stoic community on the internet, and propose a solution to the problem I see.

In this article, I'll assume you already know a thing or two about Stoicism. I don't expect you to be an expert on philosophy, nor do I expect you to be a practicing Stoic. Just knowing the basics is enough.

Ready? Let's start!

​In this article

  • Who am I, and how did I become a Stoic?
  • How I struggled to understand Stoic philosophy.
  • The problem with Stoicism in the internet age.
  • How to fix Stoic education.
  • The purpose of Practical Stoicism.
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