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4 Lessons From Stoicism On Discipline


submitted by [deleted]

Stoicism is an old masculine philosophy from Greece & Rome which we can learn A LOT from.

One of the Stoic virtues is temperance and under temperance comes discipline.

Discipline keeps one rigid, in a routine and making progress towards whatever one is pursuing.

Here are are some lessons I've taken away which has helped me develop discipline in regards to my health and overall quality of life.

1. Find Wise People To Emulate

Seneca was a Roman Stoic philosopher. He once said: “Without a ruler to do it against, you can’t make crooked straight.”

We need to recognise the importance of having wise people in our lives which we look up to for inspiration.

These figures serve as models for ourselves to emulate.

Pick carefully and choose someone who is living a good life. By good life I mean someone who is morally sound.

Watch what they do, listen to what they say, learn from them and more importantly pay attention to what they don’t do.

What is motivating this person’s actions, their ambitions, why are the consequences they experience happening to them.

Changing your mindset into own ahead of your own will build confidence and trust in yourself to stay on track and become more self-disciplined.

Humble yourself and embrace ignorance. Socrates, who needs no introduction, describes this wise idea well by telling us to admit wholeheartedly that: “I know that I know nothing.”

2. Review Your Day

It’s not enough to go to sleep without considering the implications, lessons and knowledge you gained throughout the day. It’s a shame to forget to do this.

Thinking about thinking late at night were referred to as ‘evening retrospections’, today one may call this journalling.

Ask yourself, what did I do well today?

Where were my discipline and self-control tested, where did I do good?

What did I do bad, why did this occur? Furthermore, how can I improve?

One of the best ways to become more disciplined is to scrutinise yourself, find your weak spot. Be brutally honest and use this time to connect with your subconscious.

Practicing evening retrospections on a consistent basis will allow you to become more self-aware through every step of your day.

The moment you find something which derailed you from your pursuits, recognise it, don't ignore it. Never regret your actions or words and most importantly strive to never make the same mistake moving forward.

3. Your Distractions Are Your Own Doing

Being distressed, being bothered by small things instantly is really bad for discipline and often de-rails you.

Epictetus was born a slave in what we call Turkey today; he lived in Rome, was then banished and spent the rest of his life in Greece. He was famous for the dichotomy of control, which is a fundamental Stoic idea carried through time.

You can do this by reinforcing to yourself what is within your control and what is out of your control; if you embrace what is out of your control and accept it, you will experience tranquility.

4. Every day is a new life.

Seneca said, “Begin at once to live, and count each separate day as a separate life.”

The moment you wake up, remember that the new day is a new life. The past shouldn’t be forgotten, but

[–]Diiingi 62 points63 points  (0 children)

This is pretty helpful, thank you

[–]JcHgvr 16 points17 points  (2 children)

Funny how ambivalent TRP can be. On one hand we have dozens of posts on stoicism and morality, on the other is the praise for the dark triad and how effective it is in getting you what you want. You can't be both. I'm either a selfish, machiavellistic, borderline sociopath. Or the morally right, meditating philisopher.

[–][deleted] 14 points15 points  (0 children)

Think toolset, not moral compass.

[–]untonyto 4 points5 points  (0 children)

TRP only opens your eyes to the unfiltered truth. How you navigate that wasteland - the higher consciousness or lower cravings path, the enlightened or the darkened path - is entirely up to the traveller.

[–]TRP_mask 9 points10 points  (0 children)

I just finished a school project on stoicism. What a coincidence

[–]ovster94 18 points19 points  (0 children)

Very well put together. I saved the post for further reference. Thank you and good luck on your self improvement journey!

[–]i-wash-myself 15 points16 points  (6 children)

Find wise people to emulate.

I feel like I really need this. Were any of you able to find such people? How do you find such a guy?

[–]tanlkula 7 points8 points  (0 children)

The guy you need will most likely be on the internet. What is your goal? Find people that are known for achieving the same goal(s) as yours and emulate them.

[–][deleted] 12 points13 points  (0 children)

The Seneca quote hits home. If we dwell in the past or future too much, we miss opportunities in the present.

[–]Gozsayin 3 points4 points  (0 children)

Trying keeping a daily journal. I have found that being able to go back a week and see what and how I was thinking keeps me grounded and moving forward.

[–]belum24 3 points4 points  (0 children)

I am definitely saving this so I can start my first reflection tonight. Thank you!

[–]BlackCraneStoic 2 points3 points  (0 children)

As Marcus Aurelius wrote in his Meditations "The soul is dyed in the colour of it's thoughts." Whatever you reflect on in life will influence you to the point where it becomes a physical manifestation.

To become disciplined one must think in a disciplined manner and the rest will follow.

[–]Helrade 3 points4 points  (0 children)

Awesome! Short and sweet. Thanks. The video is worth watching too.

[–]Tosbor20 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Kudos to those people on this sub who contribute time and effort into helping others find meaning and purpose in their lives. Your efforts are greatly appreciated. Superb post!

[–]whiteteeadventures 2 points3 points  (0 children)

This is exactly what I needed. Seems fundamental, but it always feels refreshing and the basics are always essential. I understand the saying that went something like, 'you can't make a crooked line straight without a ruler', but what is that ruler? It's implied that the "ruler" resembles an idol you're modeling after. But who's HE then modeling after? I believe this metaphorical ruler should be embraced by the spiritual side, and resembles the perfect version of YOU, or whatever you believe God to be. What does the ruler represent for you?

[–]Vianny123 3 points4 points  (2 children)

Where can I read more of this philosophy OP?? This is definitely a good read and wish to learn more about the subject. Any links, books etc are appreciated.

[–][deleted] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

"Review your day" has been the most powerful for me. I have an agenda that I write in after every day is over, and the quality of my life skyrocketed when I picked up that habit. It's almost like meditating. It keeps things in order, and it helps get the emotions out on a piece of paper. Strongly recommend.

[–][deleted] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

good post

[–]Richowe 0 points1 point  (0 children)

This is brilliant

[–]kingtrechsel -1 points0 points  (0 children)

I don't understand to what degree would be appropriate for balancing a structured belief system versus accepting you know nothing.

[–]2Dmva100 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Good post.

Although I will say it's hard to be stoic and not laugh while watching a fat blue haired SJW chick trying to hit a volleyball and instead a bunch of Pillsbury rolls spilled out her fempowerment tshirt during gym class.

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