The Daily Stoic for July 8th. “Stop Monkeying Around”.
“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
Again, what Marcus Aurelius is asking us here is stop complaining about fate, or our lives, and do something to change them.
That’s a good piece of advice. And it’s true that it requires character. It requires you to be responsible for your actions and do something about that instead of just whining about your lack of luck, money or contacts.
Stop Monkeying Around
I am convinced that we are the ultimate architects of our lives. “I can’t do anything” and “It’s too late for me to change” are just bad excuses. While obviously our environment, opportunities or resources can limit us, they can’t stop us completely, or preventing us from becoming what we want if we spend enough time and effort on it. We are never too old, or too small, to change our lives.
It may be hard to believe at first, but every small decision counts. A lot. Every small step you take, every little action, has an enormous influence on your life.
Just as the flipping of the wings of a butterfly can influence a tornado in the famous metaphor of the Butterfly Effect, so our lives can change thanks to the sum of lots of small acts of will.
That may sound scary, but the best part is, you can always steer back in another direction. If your path is not good for you anymore, there’s always you can do to change it. Always.
Today’s Daily Stoic, “Stop Monkeying Around”, advises us once again to stop complaining about fate, destiny or our lives, and instead do something about it. We are the ultimate architects of our lives. So start believing it, and act accordingly.