What are you giving up in order to gain mastery?

“At every moment, keep a sturdy mind on the task at hand, as a Roman and human being, doing it with strict and simple dignity, affection, freedom, and justice, giving yourself a break from all other considerations. You can do this if you approach each task as if it is your last, giving up every distraction, emotional subversion of reason, and all drama, vanity, and complaint over your fair share. You can see how mastery over a few things makes living an abundant and devout life possible.

Marcus Aurelius

Isn’t it amazing that the ability to focus was as challenging and impactful over 2,000 years ago as it is today? I can’t imagine what Marcus would think of our fragmented world with all the distractions and demands on attention.

There is so much insight in this quote. One could spend a lifetime trying to unpack and apply the wisdom found in these eighty-nine words. Ultimately less is more. Giving up the things that don’t matter for the few things that do and persist over time is how one builds a legacy that matters, not for oneself but others.  


What are the few things you can focus on mastering?

How will you choose to play the cards you are dealt?

“It’s not about the cards you’re dealt, but how you play the hand.”

Randy Pausch

It can be natural to look at the cards in your hand and wish they were different. You can undoubtedly stare at the five of hearts and imagine what it would have been like to get the ace of spades instead. But lamenting what you didn’t get won’t help you with the cards you do hold.

Worrying about what you don’t have only serves to steal joy from the gifts and blessings right under your nose. Learning to appreciate and celebrate those gifts, recognizing to millions of other people the cards you hold are priceless beyond measure, enables you to experience the greatest freedom in life.  

‘And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? If then you are not able to do as small a thing as that, why are you anxious about the rest? ‘ Luke 12:25-26 

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dusty

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