Time to think…about the strength you have

“Don’t trust in your reputation, money or position, but in the strength that is yours – namely, your judgements about the things that you control and don’t control. For this alone is what makes us free and unfettered, that picks us up by the neck from the depths and lifts us eye to eye with […]

Time to think…about the ups and downs of life

“If the breaking day sees someone proud, the ending day sees them brought low. No-one should put too much trust in triumph, no-one should give up hope of trials improving.” Seneca, Thyestes. Be grateful for what you have and what you can control, and be accepting of the rest. After all, it is what it […]

Time to think…about the constant that is change

“There is no evil in things changing, just as there is no good in persisting in a new state.” Marcus Aurelius. Take the time each day to stop and have a look around you. What you have done, where you have been, where you got to, how you have changed. You cannot step into the […]

Time to think…about your future

“Don’t seek for everything to happen as you wish it would, but rather wish that everything happens as it actually will – then your life will flow well.” Epictetus, Enchiridion. It is a part of the human condition to spend time trying to predict our future, or dwelling on the past in the hope that […]

Time to think…about what shapes your character

“Each person acquires their own character, but their official roles are designated by chance. You should invite some to your table because they are deserving, others because they may come to deserve it.” Seneca, Moral Letters. Whatever hand life has dealt you, the power to choose your attitude about it remains all yours. Viktor Frankl, […]

Time to think…about what goes around

“Crimes often return to their teacher.” Seneca, Thyestes. What goes around, comes around. Do unto others as you would have done onto yourself. Watch what you do doesn’t come back to bite you (usually on your behind!). If you are frustrated by the poor behaviour of others, how often do you feel justified in responding […]

Time to think…about your defining characteristics

“People aren’t in awe of your sharp mind? So be it. But you have many other qualities you can’t claim to have been deprived of at birth. Display then those qualities in your own power: honesty, dignity, endurance, chastity, contentment, frugality, kindness, freedom, persistence, avoiding gossip, and magnanimity.” Marcus Aurelius, Meditations. “Some are born great, […]

Time to think…about trying to be well-rounded every day

“So someone’s good at taking down an opponent, but that doesn’t make them more community-minded, or modest, or well-prepared for any circumstance, or more tolerant of the faults of others.” Marcus Aurelius, Meditations. Being a champion at one thing doesn’t make us brilliant at everything else. We are all winners and losers – more-or-less – […]

Time to think…about living for today and not tomorrow

“Such behaviour! People don’t want to praise their contemporaries whose lives they actually share, but hold great expectations for the praise of future generations – people they haven’t met or ever will! This is akin to being upset that past generations didn’t praise you.” Marcus Aurelius, Meditations. Keeping a daily gratitude diary – writing down […]

Time to think…about turning away from tempting little habits

“Since habit is such a powerful influence, and we’re used to pursuing our impulses to gain and avoid outside our own choice, we should set a contrary habit against that, and where appearances are really slippery, use the counterforce of our training.” Epictetus, Discourses. The emphasis needed here is on the word ‘training’. Successful impulse […]

Time to think…about being a true friend

“There’s nothing worse than a wolf befriending sheep. Avoid false friendships at all costs. If you are good, straightforward, and well-meaning, it should show in your eyes and not escape notice.” Marcus Aurelius, Meditations. It’s unrealistic to believe that we can and should like everyone we meet, and that everyone should like us in return. […]

Time to think…about being kind today

“A benefit should be kept like a buried treasure, only to be dug up in necessity. Nature bids us to do well by all. Wherever there is a human being, we have an opportunity for kindness.” Seneca, On The Happy Life. We all have it in us to reach inside ourselves and bring forth support, […]

Time to think…about the assumptions you quickly make

“Everything turns on your assumptions about it, and that’s on you. You can pluck out the hasty judgement at will, and like steering a ship around a point, you will find calm seas, fair weather and a safe port.” Marcus Aurelius, Meditations. Take a step back and an extra second or two to think about […]

Time to think…about futile emotions getting in the way of change

“Are you angry when someone’s armpits stink or their breath is bad? What would be the point? Having such a mouth and such armpits, there’s going to be a smell emanating. You say, “they must have sense, can’t they tell how they are offending others?” Well, you have sense too, congratulations! So, use your natural […]

Time to think…about being angry

“How much better to heal than seek revenge from injury. Vengeance wastes a lot of time and exposes you to many more injuries than the first that sparked it. Anger always outlasts hurt. Best to take the opposite course. Would anyone think it normal to return a kick to a mule or a bite to […]

Time to think…about what it is to be honest

“How rotten and fraudulent when people say they intend to ‘give it to you straight.’ What are you up to, dear friend? It shouldn’t need your announcement, but be readily seen, as if written on your forehead, heard in the ring of your voice, a flash in your eyes – just as the beloved sees […]

Time to think…about what you really believe in

“When the standards have been set, things are tested and weighed. And the work of philosophy is just this, to examine and uphold the standards, but the work of a truly good person is in using those standards when they know them.” Epictetus, Discourses. It can sometimes be difficult to live by the standards you […]

Time to think…about being grateful for what you already have

“Yes, getting your wish would have been so nice. But isn’t that exactly why pleasure trips us up? Instead, see if these things might be even nicer – a great soul, freedom, honesty, kindness, saintliness.” Marcus Aurelius, Meditations. Sometimes it can be rather settling and calming to stop and think about the things you do […]

Time to think…about credit where credit’s due

“It’s in keeping with Nature to show our friends affection and to celebrate their advancement, as if it were our very own. For if we don’t do this, virtue, which is strengthened only by exercising our perceptions, will no longer endure in us.” Seneca, Moral Letters. Recognise the good that others achieve and be gracious […]

Time to think…about doing the right thing for everyone else, not just you

“That which isn’t good for the hive, isn’t good for the bee.” Marcus Aurelius, Meditations. How strong is your organizational citizenship this week? Consider those group-wide behaviours (rituals, habits, friction, artefacts and even hero- or demon-worship) that influence the wellbeing of the individual. Healthy practice at work needs to go across the organization and not […]

Time to think…about avoiding luxury

“As for me, I would choose being sick over living in luxury, for being sick only harms the body, whereas luxury destroys both the body and the soul, causing weakness and incapacity in the body, and lack of control and cowardice in the soul. What’s more, luxury breeds injustice because it also breeds greediness.” Musonius […]

Time to think…about the interconnectedness of things

“Meditate often on the interconnectedness and mutual interdependence of all things in the universe. For in a sense, all things are mutually woven together and therefore have an affinity for each other – for one thing follows after another according to their tension of movement, their sympathetic stirrings, and the unity of all substance.” Marcus […]

Time to think…about letting your virtue shine forth

“Does the light of a lamp shine and keep its glow until its fuel is spent? Why shouldn’t your truth, justice, and self-control shine until you are extinguished?”Marcus Aurelius, Meditations. Is there a right time to be yourself? How often do we constrain our inner selves and deny our own needs? Have you ever held […]

Time to think…about needs and gratitude

“Nothing can satisfy greed, but even a small measure satisfies nature. So it is that the poverty of an exile brings no misfortune, for no place of exile is so barren as not to produce ample support for a person.” Seneca, On Consolation to Helvia. How comfortable we become as we progress – but only […]

Time to think…about shock and facing danger

“Once your mind has been shocked – once it gets in the habit of blind panic – it can’t provide for its own safety. For it doesn’t really avoid danger, it just runs away. Yet we are exposed to greater danger with our backs turned.” Seneca, Moral Letters. At some point we need to stop […]

Time to think…about leisure and study

“Leisure without study is death – a tomb for the living person.” Seneca, Moral Letters. Need we say more about this? If we choose not to, perhaps then we fall victim to the very concept itself, in that we look no deeper into the reasons why we can so easily waste away our time in […]

Time to think…about reason and resolve

“Remember that your ruling reason becomes unconquerable when it rallies and relies on itself, so that it won’t do anything contrary to its own will, even if its position is irrational. How much more unconquerable if its judgements are careful and made rationally? Therefore, the mind freed from passions is an impenetrable fortress – a […]

Time to think…about your inner beat

“When forced, as it seems, by circumstances into utter confusion, get a hold of yourself quickly. Don’t be locked out of the rhythm any longer than necessary. You’ll be able to keep the beat if you are constantly returning to it.” Marcus Aurelius, Meditations. Know the sound of your own drum and beat it yourself […]