“As Plato said, every soul is deprived of truth against its will. The same holds true for justice, self-control, goodwill to others, and every similar virtue. It’s essential to constantly keep this in your mind, for it will make you more gentle to all.” Marcus Aurelius, Meditations.

 

It’s easy to focus on what we didn’t mean to do instead of what we wished we had done. We didn’t mean to break the wine glass, clearly, but it would be a little peculiar to keep saying to ourselves “I want to be careful”. And yet, we issue guidance and exhort warnings about what not to do: “don’t spill the milk!”; “don’t be late!”; “don’t drink too much!”

 

What is it that we do want to do? How do we mean to conduct ourselves? Keep in front of mind throughout the day your good intentions: speak the truth, do right, correct wrongs, manage your impulses, show kindness to others and be good to yourself. Begin with the end in mind.

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