The Daily Stoic for April 2nd: “Be wary of what you let in”:
“Drama, combat, terror, numbness, and subservience—every day these things wipe out your sacred principles, whenever your mind entertains them uncritically or lets them slip in.”
—MARCUS AURELIUS, MEDITATIONS, 10.9
I think today’s stoic has a lot to do with preventing negative stuff from affecting us. While you can use tools like Stoicism to keep these destructive influences under control, I think the best way to deal with them is avoiding them altogether. Getting rid of the things that disrupt your life.
As an example, I used to be a violent, angry driver. When I decluttered my life and became a digital nomad, along with my car, I got rid of a lot of stress and anxiety.
The car is just one of the things that was making me miserable. We let those things in, and rarely stop for a moment to think the harm they cause. In my case, getting rid of my stuff was the perfect excuse to analyze my life and helped me part with some other non-physical junk too.
Be Wary Of What You Let In
Of course, this teaching doesn’t apply only to the things that are already present in our lives. It also covers the ones we encounter along our way.
I think we all need some time to identify these negative elements and stay away from them. Unfortunately, in my case this works on a trial and error basis. I learn what I want in life by finding out what I don’t. Luckily, I learn faster every day.
Again, the best way to deal with these things is avoiding them altogether. As an example, I don’t watch TV, talk about politics or read the news anymore.
I try to surround myself with positive people and do things that will make me feel better. Things that help me learn, understand, and smile, that charge my batteries, instead of depleting them. If I work, I try to work on things that I love, and I am learning to delegate the remaining tasks.
Today’s Daily Stoic, “Be wary of what you let in”, is a clear call in my mind to avoid the negative things in life. When I decluttered my life, I got rid of not just a lot of physical garbage, but a lot of psychological, social and cultural junk too. I made my life simpler, and now I try to learn from that, avoid the negative things and focus on the positive ones.