Happiness is Not Being Surprised

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“How ridiculous and what a stranger he is who is surprised at anything which happens in life.” Marcus Aurelius Meditations Book 12

I think once you fully accept the concept of never being surprised by anything in life, the happier you’ll be.  No matter how ridiculous or egregious, it’s probably happened before and it will happen again.  This ranges from all kinds rudeness, violence, abuse, lying, etc.  Also included are personal tragedies, loss, failures.

Chances are, she'll lose the ring at some point.  Hope she isn't surprised.

Chances are, she’ll lose the ring at some point. Hope she isn’t surprised.

Certainly there are things that could pleasantly surprise us as well, but again, these events are part of the rise and fall of life.

Never be surprised.

Don’t Make it Worse!

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Eighth, consider how much more pain is brought on us by the anger and vexation caused by such acts than by the acts themselves, at which we are angry and vexed. Marcus Aurelius Meditations Chapter 11

Events happen.  Our impressions determine how good or bad they are, right?  If this be true, then certainly our reaction, or worse our over-reaction to something that disturbs us cannot possibly make it better. Continue reading

Less Words, More Listening

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“Be for the most part silent, or speak merely what is necessary, and in few words.”  Epictetus Enchiridion

I want to help.  I want to give advice.  After all, I have a lot of knowledge if people would just listen to me.  Also, I am full of helpful advice if people would just listen to me.  The long and short of it all is I do a lot of talking.  I have the gift of gab, and I have a lot of helpful things to say.  Except when I don’t. Continue reading