The Daily Stoic for August 19th, “Corralling The Unnecessary”.
“It is said that if you would have peace of mind, busy yourself with little. But wouldn’t a better saying be do what you must and as required of a rational being created for public life? For this brings not only the peace of mind of doing few things, but the greater peace of doing them well. Since the vast majority of our words and actions are unnecessary, corralling them will create an abundance of leisure and tranquility. As a result, we shouldn’t forget at each moment to ask, is this one of the unnecessary things? But we must corral not only unnecessary actions but unnecessary thoughts, too, so needless acts don’t tag along after them.”
—MARCUS AURELIUS, MEDITATIONS, 4.24
Cut, cut, cut. I can’t agree more with today’s stoic meditation. I’ve talked before about how “Less is more” is my life motto.
Corralling The Unnecessary
However, it’s surprising how difficult simplicity is to achieve. In the technological design world, Apple is renowned for bringing simplicity to its designs and devices -not so much their software offerings-. That’s really valuable, and that minimalist beauty is what makes its products so appealing.
Sometimes we make our lives more complex than they should. By not having the courage of saying no when we should. Or by collecting stuff, thinking that it will bring us happiness, while it only gives us more headaches.
But the heaviest load was never physical, but psychological, and emotional. That is the most difficult one to get rid of, because you can’t simply throw it away. But it’s the most rewarding one to remove from your life.
Today’s Daily Stoic, “Corralling The Unnecessary”, talks about the unnecessary things in our life, and the need of getting rid of them.