It is essential to understand where we are in the current comedy of life and play our part. Whether that be the leader, a star, a walk-on part or a supporting actor or actress. We may also be asked to play supporting roles driven by needs and the world's circumstances, the people around us or those we love. Michael Caine has often quipped that "I got paid the same for a bad film as a good one, one film I made, so I could buy a house for my mother." We may not like the role, but fate nonetheless asks us to play it. Let's get into it.
"I'll call you" is the number one lie men tell, according to Dory Hollander PhD in her bestseller "101 Lies Men Tell Women." That's up there with that other number one lying moment - "Does my bum look big in this? Is there a correct answer? As couples, we lie to each other apparently 30% of the time. One of my friends was surprised it was that low. Lies permeate every aspect of our day, and to be frank, sometimes we're glad. Yet the lies we tell ourselves can have the most significant repercussions on how our lives turn out. I believe there is one grand lie that we tell ourselves, which sets up the ripples that flow through the rest of life. Let's Get into it...
Through our life, we run across questions that seem to have no answers. They may be questions in our own lives or indeed problems in society that seem insolvable - so what do we do? Do we bury our heads? Do we leave it for someone else to find? Do we give up because it is all too hard? If we fail to seek answers to questions that don't have answers, we forget the people, the families we love and the countries we share. Perhaps the answers lie in what questions we ask? Maybe we need to examine some profound aspects of our foundations?
There are quite simple acts of courage occurring every day. In many ways, we are surrounded by them, often without our knowledge and often in ourselves. They are not the acts that receive the media attention or any attention at all in many cases. Yet they dip into the same human well all great hero’s bathe. What acts of courage have you missed, perhaps in your own life? What acts of courage are you called to perform today?
“He who remains silent is deemed to have granted his consent — or so the old tenet goes. So will we remain silent, or will we speak up loud and clear and truthfully?”
When we watch a movie about a hero who stands up to authority and puts it all on the line to create a better life, we all imagine that we are that hero. But, unfortunately, history shows that, more likely, we will fall short of that mark.
Over the last couple of years, it has been easy for us to focus on all the things we cannot or are unable to do; yet we have all lived each of those days, and what we have done with them can still bring us joy. They can remind us of what is essential to living a good life.
On January the 1st, 2017, I sat down to read the first page of The Daily Stoic. A book that features 366 meditations on wisdom, perseverance, and the art of living. The first day held a quote that summarised everything I’d learnt in the previous twenty-five years. So simple, powerful yet can change a life, The ideas written nearly 2000 years ago contained inside are helpful at any time, but now more than ever - Enjoy.
Many quotes from famous thinkers have been splashed on the internet and social media in the current cultural landscape of vaccinations and pandemics and ensuring economic upheaval. They have been used as verbal grenades to lob at the other side in arguments that have been polarised into straightforward black and white world views. Yet my history shows - it is all too easy to neglect the substance of the quote and its equal vitality to our viewpoint. What is the quote that changed my life and could you use it too?
For any building, the foundations can take the longest to build, but if faulty, they will cause the greatest problems. So it is with life. How do we work out what foundations we have to play with and build strong foundations that will last a lifetime?