Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Be a better person (some nice quotes)

Shared on email by Sreenivas Ghatty

"Waste no more time arguing what a good man should be. Be one." — Marcus Aurelius. Today, in a society obsessed with content, outrage, and drama, it's easier to get lost in the echo chamber of the debate of what's "better." We can have endless discussions about what's right and wrong. What should we do in this hypothetical situation or that one? How can we encourage other people to be better? If you want to try to make the world a slightly better place, step away from the argument. Dig yourself out of the rubble. Stop wasting time with how things should be, would be, could be. Be that thing.


"You never know who's swimming naked until the tide goes out." — Warren Buffett.  People do a very good job pretending at things, and their well-maintained fronts are often covers for incredible risk and irresponsibility. You never know until things get bad. If you're living the life you know to be right, if you are making good, solid decisions, don't be swayed by what others are doing — whether that is taking the form of irrational exuberance or panicked pessimism. See the high flying lives of others as a cautionary tale  and not as an inspiration or a source of insecurity. Keep doing what you're doing and don't be caught swimming naked! Because the tide will go out. Prepare for it!


"Search others for their virtues, thyself for thy vices." — Benjamin Franklin.  It's a complete waste of time to go around projecting strict standards on other people — ones they never agreed to follow in the first place — and then being aghast or feel wronged when they fall short. The other reason is you have no idea what other people are going or have been through. So give people the benefit of the doubt. Look for good in them, assume good in them, and let that good inspire your own actions.


"To improve is to change, so to be perfect is to have changed often." — Winston Churchill.  He'd quip about his constant change of political affiliation: "I said a lot of stupid things when I worked with the Conservative Party, and I left it because I did not want to go on saying stupid things." As Cicero would say when attacked that he was changing his opinion: "If something strikes me as probable, I say it; and that is how, unlike everyone else, I remain a free agent." There is nothing more impressive — intellectually or otherwise — than to change long held beliefs, opinions, and habits. The more you've changed, the better you probably are.


- Ryan Holiday

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