“The impediment to action advances action. What stands in the way becomes the way.” – Marcus Aurelius
Welcome to The Vibe!
The only weekly blog that doesn’t binge on Netflix.
Each week we discuss ONE IDEA that will help you live a better life.
This week’s topic is how to THINK LIKE A ROMAN EMPEROR.
And how ANCIENT WISDOM can help us live a modern life.
The Vibe: Think Like a Roman Emperor
The disease was rumored to have started in Asia.
It spread to every part of the world.
The virus wreaked havoc.
Travel was shut down.
Sporting events and parties were put on hold.
The economy tanked.
Everyday life was turned upside down.
By now you know what this is about…
The Antonine Plague of 165 AD.
A virus invaded the Roman Empire almost 2,000 years ago.
It caused one of the worst crisises in the empire’s 900 year history.
Ryan Holiday wrote, “This plague made Rome look more like a battlefield than a world power.”
The Romans looked to one person to guide them through this crisis – their Emperor -Marcus Aurelius
Marcus is considered one of the greatest emperors in Rome’s history.
To deal with all the wars, plagues and problems of running an empire, Marcus wrote notes to himself.
These notes were reminders of how to live with high CHARACTER and VIRTUE.
By luck, his personal diary still exists.
The diary, which was never meant for anyone but Marcus, is now considered one of the greatest books ever written.
Author Tyler Cowen calls MEDITATIONS “a quake book,” because it shakes your view of the world upside down.
US Presidents, Prime Ministers, and Generals have relied on MEDITATIONS to help them through tough times.
Could an ANCIENT DIARY help us navigate through our current CRISIS?
You bet your chariott it can.
Here are 3.5 ways to THINK LIKE A ROMAN EMPEROR:
1) Shut off the News
Marcus wrote, “Stop allowing your mind to be a slave, to be jerked about.”
It’s time to give ourself a break from the noise.
We all know what to do: 6 feet away, self-distance, and wash our hands until our skin almost falls off.
Anything else is speculation and gossip.
No need to fill our minds with unactionable information.
Shut it off.
Free your mind.
2) Less Is More
Marcus wrote, “Let your deeds be few. Limit yourself to what is essential.”
Plagues have an amazing ability to FOCUS us on what’s important.
It’s time to cut out the MENTAL and PHYSICAL clutter in our lives.
Time to simplify our homes and lifestyles.
And carry that simplicity with us when things open up again.
Simplicity is liberating.
3) Help Others
Marcus wrote, “Avoid all actions that are purposeless. Let every action aim solely at the common good.”
NHL great Wayne Gretzky liked to say that it was not how great we are, its how great we can make others.
Times like this are an amazing opportunity to help someone.
Maybe drop some supplies off to a neighbor or make a donation to a great cause.
3.5) Keep Calm & Roll On
Marcus wrote, “Bear in mind that all of this has happened before, and all will happen again. The same plot from beginning to end.”
Plagues and natural disasters are nothing new.
Lucky for us we get to take on this plague with wifi, Whole Foods delivery, and on demand Yoga classes.
Life is going to test us.
It will throw OBSTACLES at us until the day we die.
Just KEEP CALM and ROLL WITH THE PUNCHES.
Ryan Holiday said,“We might not be emperors, but the world is constantly testing us. Can you get past the things that fall in our way. Will you stand up and show us what you’re made of?”
Adversity reveals character.
Let’s show how much we have.
Cura ut valeas…