These 6 Epictetus Quotes Will Change How You View Life
“It’s not what happens to you, but how you react to it that matters.” – Epictetus
In creating your best life, it would never be wise to expect for the circumstances of your life to be perfect, rather to develop the character required to overcome and thrive through all challenges. Life happens. Challenges welcome all of us, and so, the difference in the quality of life we lead, is in our response.
However you respond to the challenges of life, determines the quality of your life. However you choose to view the world around you, is what will be reflected back to you.
Do you view life through an optimistic lens, or a pessimistic one?
When life gets tough… when challenges arrive… do you RISE to the challenge, or complain, curse and quit?
The character and strength developed through refusing to quit when things get hard is priceless. Remember, it does not matter what happens, it only matters how you REACT TO WHAT HAPPENS.
“We have two ears and one mouth… so that we can listen twice as much as we speak.” – Epictetus
Most of us live this way. We talk too much and listen too little. We want to be seen all knowing, so we voice our opinion when we don’t know… and don’t know because we fail to listen.
We all want to be heard, but very few of us hear the other.
Next time you are in a conversation with someone, especially those you care about, practice intentional listening. Do not wait for your turn to speak, just listen, with the intention to understand. Be present. Listen more.
“There is only one way to happiness and that is to cease worrying about things which are beyond the power of our will.” – Epictetus
Trying to change things out of our control is often referred to as insanity, most likely because it is.
Accept all things you can not change and work to change all things you can. Release resistance and all stress for all things outside of your control. That energy used in fighting against what-is… should be used for something more positive… like improving other areas of your life you do have control over.
Happiness simply can not come to those who are fighting against life.
“Wealth consists not in having great possessions, but in having few wants.”
“He is a wise man who does not grieve for the things which he has not, but rejoices for those which he has.” – Epictetus
Gratitude. The greatest power on earth. When you LIVE in it, you are complete. When you live without it, no matter how much you have, you’ll never have enough. Rich are those who are happy with ALL they have, no matter how much they have… and usually those are the ones who attract more to be grateful for.
If you don’t already, make gratitude a daily practice. Spend a few moments every day thinking about everything that IS GREAT in your life… everything that makes you truly rich… all the things money can’t buy.
“No man is free who is not master of himself.” – Epictetus
No matter how much wealth you have accumulated or how much you own, if you aren’t the master of your mind, you can not be free.
Nothing can be more important than mastering your mind, mastering your emotions. Throughout the years there have been countless stories of millionaires, billionaires and those who seemingly had it all… ending their own life… Although they had accumulated a lot of material wealth, they did not feel rich on the inside… and that’s just it, riches should always begin on the inside.
Society has it backwards… putting material success and winning on a pedestal when there live so many “winners” who are emotionally void. Focus first on your mental, and physical health and everything else will fall into place.
“First say to yourself what you would be; and then do what you have to do.” – Epictetus
Have that conversation with yourself. First ask exactly what you want to experience in your life. Everything you must have. Then, be prepared to work for, sacrifice for, and EARN what you must have.
If you really want it, it won’t feel like work, you will do the work, you will put in the hours, you will make the sacrifices, but you will do it willingly, with no resistance – because the OUTCOME will be more important than the time it takes to get there, or whatever you have to give up to get there. Go on that journey. Find what you really want… and go get it.