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It's Ok To Be Scared. Just Don't Be AFRAID. | Stoic Motivation

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It's Ok To Be Scared. Just Don't Be AFRAID. | Stoic Motivation

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Life as a narrow bridge

Life as a narrow bridge

"The world is a narrow bridge and the important thing is to not be afraid" - Hebrew prayer.

The world we live in is uncertain and full of risks and it's easy to get scared and look down instead of looking forward. But if you peer over to the side of the bridge, you lose the motivation to continue, you freeze up and stop making good decisions.

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Fear won't help you

What does help in a situation in which you are scared: training, courage, discipline, commitment and calm.

From all of the above, courage is held by the stoics as the most essential virtue.

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Chris Hadfield

"It's not that astronauts are braver than other people. We're just meticulously prepared."

Chris Hadfield

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What preparation does

Astronauts face all kinds of difficult, very risky situations in space. And the margin for error is extremely tiny in those situations.

Astronaut Chris Hadfield says that the key in these difficult situations is to remind yourself that there are things you can to make the situation better.

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Being scared vs being afraid

There is no problem so bad that you can't make it worse.

And that's the difference between being scared and being afraid - the latter prevents you from improving your situations and it may even make things worse.

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Franklin D. Roosevelt

"The only thing we have to fear is fear itself - nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed effort to convert retreat into advance."

Franklin D. Roosevelt

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Marcus Aurelius

Don't let your imagination be crushed by life as a whole. Don't try to picture everything bad that could possibly happen. Stick with the situation at hand, and ask, “Why is this so unbearable? Why can't I endure it?" You'll be embarrassed to answer.

Marcus Aurelius

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SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

First Principles

A first principle is the fundamental building block of an idea, the most indivisible part that we know to be true and that we can use to build more complex thought...

First Principles: Not A New Idea

Thinking from first principles is not a new idea. It's actually the single most consistent factor among great thinkers.

For example, Aristotle believed that you could not possess true knowledge without first understanding the first principles. He thought that everything could be divided into categories and sub-categories (the smallest of them being the equivalent for first principles).

Reason And Experience

An empiricist is a person that believed all true knowledge is based and obtained through experience.

The process of seeking knowledge through experience and making use of reason to give it structure it how we can find the first principles of a subject.

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Straightforward People

Straightforward People

When we're around straightforward people we know exactly what the issues are from the start. They know what they want and they are not afraid to state it:

  • There is no nee...

The Problem With Complicated People

They are the opposite of straightforward people. They are very hesitant about the validity of their own desires and that is why they are not capable of letting the people around them know how they really feel.

  • They appear to agree with everything you are saying, but later you will find out that they had a lot of doubts
  • They will tell you they'll love to go to an event you suggested when in reality they just want to go home
  • They feel overlooked but never raise a complaint
  • They want to be understood but never speak.

What Stops Us From Speaking Up

The root cause of our complicated behavior is not that we're bad people or manipulative. We're just afraid of how people would respond if our real intentions would be known.

  • This fear can come from our childhood, if our caregivers gave us the impression that there was no room for our honesty.
  • Maybe as kinds we felt that our parents would be very sad if we'd reveal too much of our real dreams and hopes.

The child experiencing this grows into an adult that prefers to imply rather than state.

Specialization is for Insects

You have one life. We tend to define people by a few narrow identities, but humans are broader then that. 

We are creators, parents, partners etc. Putting people in boxes goes aga...

Read for Understanding

Books read is a vanity metric, a signal for intellect, but a weak one. 

You should read books for understanding. If a book looses your interest, drop it. 

Fame is a Liability

Social media made us into individual celebrities. But being famous is a bad objective. You want to be rich and anonymous, not poor and famous.

Fame has a price, and it's not worth it.