If you’re wondering why you’re not happy, why things are always hard, try this intellectual experience from Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius.
At first, you can imagine Marcus Aurelius was a busy man, perhaps the busiest man in the world. He had 15 children from his marriages. He lived in the shadow of a pandemic of pervasive diseases such as those of our time or theirs. He had annoying stomach disease. He also took philosophy lessons.
Despite all of the above, he is the emperor of Rome. Which under his rule spanned more than 3.5 million square kilometers, and about 120 million people lived in the kingdom, for whom he was responsible.
How did he manage everything? How did he do everything and without losing his mind? Or the empire retreats and becomes disastrous?
One question in our lives plays a significant role
“Most of what we say at a day or do is not necessary, Marcus Aurelius wrote in his Meditations. “If you can eliminate it, you’ll have more time and more mental calm. Ask yourself at every moment, “Is this necessary?”
Think about your own life. Think about how many hours you spend per day inside work, and you think you have done great hours that day. Think about your living. Think about what your marriage or relationship with your wife and children looks like. Think about the political movements or parties that you support and follow. Think about what you spend your money on. What are your goals. What a way to arrange your schedule. Even think about the thoughts that go through your mind.
With everything you do in your life and day, think about what you say as you talk to others or whatever you manage or own. Always ask yourself, Is this really necessary? Is this a fundamental thing I have to do? Is it good for others, or is it just to consume and pass the time, always think about your stuff like that? Why am I doing this? What will happen if you change?
So you always find us wondering why we don’t do our best! Why things are complicated! Why do things take more than they deserve! Why are we not happy!
That’s because we do so much. Or we’re doing things the wrong way. Or we insist on doing the wrong or unnecessary items.
In Greg McKeown’s book called Essentialism; most leaders love this word. If you want to reach your goal, you just have to do what you should do, the way they should be done. If you look at them, most of the things around you are marginal things that you’re engaged in.
That means being comfortable with saying “No” to many things that consuming your life. It will be like getting rid of excess fat in your body that causes you to get heavy while in movement. But you’ll soon realize when you get rid of these fats, you give way to saying “yes” to essential things that you should focus on and engage in. Of course, the opposite is true; when you’re overloading yourself with a lot of fringe stuff, you’re saying “yes, welcome” to many topics you don’t need that are reflected in making your life less than you deserve. So you may find some people around you are upset because you are breaking the norm. They want you to share time-consuming side conversations with them. Of course, you may be embarrassed by your co-workers that they will become alien to them and do not share the same snippets. Still, by filtering out the essential things from the unimportant, you make your life and the lives of others happier by making life valuable.
We’re told Life is short.
When you think about your life and years old, you’ll see that we have a short time to live, but we, in fact, lose a lot of it. Life is long enough, and we have been given a good enough amount of them to achieve the highest achievement if they are well invested. When it is wasted in the random, disorganized luxury, and our time spent on any activity that is not good and does not bring us anything useful, we are finally forced after many years to realize that we have lost so much and may have entered the stage of hibernation or clinical death literally before the last stop-trip due to death.
We don’t get a short life, but we make it short.
We are not deprived of good times, education, or conscious minds, but we are wasting these grants that God has given us. Just as when things fall into the hands of a wrong heir or the owner of abundant wealth, he is unconscious, squandering every beauty in his life. This wealth is wasted in an instant. On the other side, even if this wealth is modest and simple in the hands of an heir or a good owner, if it is assigned to a faithful person, it increases with use and is careful not to waste it.
Drop the above on our lives, and you find that our lives and times are greatly extended if we manage them properly.
When we went through the Corona epidemic, which stopped life all over the Earth for some time, most of us went through the days:
– Fewer travel trips.
– Dinners outside the houses are fewer.
– Fewer business meetings.
– Less income.
– Fewer tasks.
You could say that the Corona outbreak was the most extensive forced life experience in history. The disease has shattered many of our assumptions about what is necessary and not necessary. Like, this work or meeting can’t be done remotely! Or I can’t live away from my friends and family!
But it did happen. The children sat learning from home, business meetings and birthday parties took place online at home, and people kept away from their colleagues and parents for fear of passing on the disease to their loved ones. Our weekly outings, annual trips, and shopping stopped for hours inside malls and shops.
We had to start with less. We had to reinvent how things work. We had to reorganize everything in our lives.
Some times of this epidemic have been difficult to endure. Sometimes we were sad and lonely. But other times were more light and cheerful for us. Because although the last few months have been difficult, it has also meant to us amid this epidemic that we have become:
– We eat more lunch and dinner at home with our parents.
– We give more appreciation to important people and things in our lives.
– With our eyes from windows, we see the view of the sky and nature around us.
– We pray to God and approach him with obedience.
– We write more focused articles and topics on more weighty topics.
As Marcus Aurelius wrote: “Doing only what is necessary leads you to double satisfaction: doing less and at the same time doing better.”
So take a minute today and ask yourself Marcus’s question. Is this necessary? Should it be done? Can it be dispensed with? What do I really need to do? What if I say no?
What happens now?
Many times you go through, you will find the answer is that “no,” it is not necessary for me to do. It is neither essential nor necessary. By saying “No,” you do not run away from your responsibilities and duties. On the contrary, you become better and perform your essential duties simply and without complications towards your family, work, and yourself.