Marcus Aurelius was Roman emperor from 161 to 180, but more importantly for our purposes here, a stoic philosopher. The quotes you are about to read were not intended for your eyes, they were a private diary. They are useful stories, ideas, and maxims that Aurelius reflected upon in order to help him live a better life.
Ideas, aka quotes, that survive show they are practical. How do we know this? Not only the quotes survive, but more importantly, the people who use them and pass them to us have survived.
There are man forgotten philosophers. We remember Socrates quotes and ideas for a reason. The following Socrates quotes will show you why…
To do anything to a high level, it has to be total obsession.
Winner focus on winning. Losers focus on winners.
At the end of the day, you’ve gotta feel some way. So why not feel unbeatable? Why not feel untouchable?
There’s people that focus on the game and forget about the art. There’s that specific individual that can do both.
People are so caught in a routine, doing the same things over and over.
The thing about the truth is, not a lot of people can handle it.
The way to do is to be.
When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be.
To see things in the seed, that is genius.
All difficult things have their origin in that which is easy, and great things in that which is small.
Great acts are made up of small deeds.
Be careful what you water your dreams with. Water them with worry and fear and you will produce weeds that choke the life from your dream. Water them with optimism and solutions and you will cultivate success. Always be on the lookout for ways to turn a problem into an opportunity for success. Always be on the lookout for ways to nurture your dream.
People in their handlings of affairs often fail when they are about to succeed. If one remains as careful at the end as he was at the beginning, there will be no failure.
The Core Mindset of Capitalism
An abundance mentality sees there are enough resources and successes to share with others. A scarcity mindset thinks that if someone else is successful it means you lose.
Example: Imagine you’re a lawyer who just graduated law school. With a scarcity mindset, you will see your graduating classmates only as competition for the legal work available in your city. You will not want to work with them.
But with an abundance mindset, you will recognise that there is likely a growing amount of legal work in your city, and if not, there is definitely more legal work available in nearby cities. You will see your graduating classmates as resources, who can help you deliver a better legal service, and whom you can help. While your portion of the business profits will be smaller, the overall businesses profits will be larger—and you will make more money.
Wisdom: “Let not your mind run on what you lack as much as on what you have already.” — Marcus Aurelius
The Attitude That Led To The 2008 GFC
An excessive focus on short-term results at the expense of long term interests.
Example: Short-termism was a key cause of the 2008 Global Financial Crisis. Large financial institutions wanted to sell as many home loans as possible, which was possible as banks were able to graning ‘NINJA’ loans— mortgages for people with No Income, No Nob, No Assets.
In the short term, the increasing number of people buying houses meant that housing prices skyrocketed. This made the financial institutions balance sheet look very healthy. But the growth was built on a house of cards.
The housing market crash. Homeowners handed back their keys and financial institutions became the ‘proud’ new owners of thousands of homes they didn’t want and couldn’t sell. Their stocks plummeted.
Wisdom: “Everyone who has worked with American management can testify that the need to satisfy the pension fund manager’s quest for higher earnings next quarter, together with the panicky fear of the raider, constantly pushes top management toward decisions they know to be costly, if not suicidal, mistakes.” — Peter Drucker
The Rosa Barks Reaction
A substance that increases the rate of a chemical reaction.
Rosa Parks arrest was the catalyst for the civil rights protests against segregation.
“The world as we have created it is a process of our thinking. It cannot be changed without changing our thinking.” ― Albert Einstein
Why Sacrifice Matters
A situation where you lose something in order to gain something else.
Example: If you buy $1,000,000 worth of stock in Google, you gain a high expected rate of return, but lose the safety of having your money in bonds or the bank.
Wisdom: “I think it’s a false trade-off to say quality time versus quantity – you have to have both.” — Hillary Clinton
Why Experts Make Poor Teachers
A difficulty in imagining what it is like for someone else not to know something that you know.
Example: A brilliant professor often forgets the difficulties that a young student encounters when learning a new subject, and thus communicates at a level more complex than the student can understand.
Wisdom: “Anyone who wants to lift the curse of knowledge must first appreciate what a devilish curse it is. Like a drunk who is too impaired to realize that he is too impaired to drive, we do not notice because the curse prevents us from noticing.” — Steven Pinker
The Barbara Streisand Effect
An attempt to hide, remove, or censor a piece of information has the unintended consequence of publicizing the information more widely.
Example: In 2003, Barbara Streisand attempted to suppress photographs of her residence in Malibu, California. Before her attempt to squash the photograph, it had only been downloaded from the internet six times, two of which were by her attorneys. After her lawsuit, the image became a phenomenon and was viewed by more than 420,000 people the following month.
Wisdom: “When you tear out a man’s tongue, you are not proving him a liar, you’re only telling the world that you fear what he might say.” ― George R.R. Martin