Stoicism Quotes, February 2016

“Our actions may be impeded… but there can be no impeding our intentions or dispositions. Because we can accommodate and adapt. The mind adapts and converts to its own purposes the obstacle to our acting.

The impediment to action advances action.

What stands in the way becomes the way.”
– Marcus Aurelius

“I believe that it would be almost impossible to find anywhere in America a black man who has lived further down in the mud of human society than I have; or a black man who has been any more ignorant than I have been; or a black man who has suffered more anguish during his life than I have. But it is only after the deepest darkness that the greatest light can come; it is only after extreme grief that the greatest joy can come; it is only after slavery and prison that the sweetest appreciation of freedom can come.”
– Malcolm X

“The big question about how people behave is whether they’ve got an Inner Scorecard or an Outer Scorecard. It helps if you can be satisfied with an Inner Scorecard. I always pose it this way. I saw: ‘Lookit. Would you rather be the world’s greatest lover, but have everyone think you’re the world’s worst lover? or would you rather be the world’s worst lover but have everyone think you’re the world’s greatest lover? Now, that’s an interesting question.

Here’s another one. If the world couldn’t see your results, would you rather be thought of as the world’s greatest investor but in reality have the world’s worst record? Or be thought of as the world’s worst investor when you were actually the best?

In teaching your kids, I think the lesson they’re learning at a very, very early age is what their parents put the emphasis on. If all the emphasis is on what the world’s going to think about you, forgetting about how you really behave, you’ll wind up with an Outer Scorecard. Now, my dad: he was a hundred percent Inner Scorecard guy.

He was really maverick. But he wasn’t a maverick for the sake of being maverick. he just didn’t care what other people thought. My dad taught me how life should be lived.”
– Warren Buffett

“You should never, when facing some unbelievable tragedy, let one tragedy increase into two or three through your failure of will.”
– Warren Buffett

“He refused to accept automatically received truths, and he wanted to examine everything himself.”
– Jack Dudman on Steven Jobs

“Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. because almost everything – all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure — these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. there is no reason not to follow your heart.”
– Steve Jobs

“No person is free who is not master of himself.”
– Epictetus

“Unfair things happen. You might be diagnosed with a disease, demoted for a mistake you didn’t make, convicted of a crime you didn’t commit. The ref might make a bad call, an agreement might be abrogated, a partner might let you down.
Our instinct is to fight these unfairnesses, to succumb if there’s no choice, but to go down kicking and screaming. We want to make it clear that we won’t accept injustice easily, we want to teach the system a lesson, we want them to know that we’re not a pushover.

But will it change the situation? Will the diagnosis be changed, the outcome of the call be any different?

What if, instead, we went at it singing and dancing? What if we walked into our four-year prison sentence determined to learn more, do more and contribute more than anyone had ever dreamed? What if we saw the derailment of one path as the opportunity to grow or to invent or to find another path?

This is incredibly difficult work, but it seems far better than the alternative.”
– Seth Godin

“‘Games are won by players who focus on the playing field – not by those whose eyes are glued to the scoreboard.”
– Warren Buffett

“The happiness of those who want to be popular depends on others; the happiness of those who seek pleasure fluctuates with moods outside their control; but the happiness of the wise grows out of their own free acts.”
– Marcus Aurelius

“In the Air Force we have a rule: check six. A guy is flying along, looking in all directions, and feeling very safe. Another guy flies up behind him (at “6 o’clock” – “12 o’clock” is directly in front of him”) and shoots. Most airplanes are shot down that way. Thinking that you’re safe is very dangerous! Somewhere, there’s a weakness you’ve got to find. You must always check six o’clock.
– U.S Air Force Gen. Donald Kutyna

“A horse that can count to ten is a remarkable horse – not a remarkable mathematician” – Samuel Johnson. (Note: See things for what they really are)

“Success is not worth rejoicing over, failure is not worth grieving over.”
– Luo Guanzhong

“Care about what other people think and you will always be their prisoner.”
– Lao Tzu

“Poise and control.”
– Herb Brooks

“Objective judgment, now at this very moment.

Unselfish action, now at this very moment.

Willing acceptance — now at this very moment — of all external events.

That’s all you need.”
– Marcus Aurelius

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