Productivity

In The Blog Of Darius Foroux. More on Medium.

©Darius Foroux

Stoic Letter 23

I took a few days off last week because I wanted to rest. It’s something I learned from Dale Carnegie. He writes in How to Stop Worrying and Start Living, “Rest before you are tired.” It’s a great piece of advice for avoiding burnout. But for most of my career, I used to wait to take a break until I was already tired and running on fumes. It’s like drinking water when you’re thirsty. The way to avoid thirst is to stay hydrated. It’s the same thing when it comes to resting your body. …


©Darius Foroux

Stoic Letter 19

Over the past year, most of us have been working from home and spending more time than usual on our own. Throughout the day, there’s no one who’s watching what we’re doing. It’s been the perfect self-awareness exercise to figure out what our true motives are.

So often, we’re motivated by getting the approval of other people. The jobs we take, the books we read, the clothes we buy, the pictures we take for social media, the people we associate with. We do those things because we want to be liked by others.

I can’t lie, I’ve lived the majority…


©Darius Foroux

Stoic Letter 16

What does it take to be happy? Going out with friends? Hanging out at the beach, drinking a mojito? Earning a lot of money? Good health?

Our Stoic friend, Seneca, argued that it was something else. He said: “No one can live happily, or even bearably, without the pursuit of wisdom.”

In my experience, this is 100% accurate. That’s why I’m surprised people are getting knocked out by the mental toll of the pandemic. Healthy people with jobs and safety complain about how hard life is right now.

I can relate to it a bit. But remember that our ancestors…


©Darius Foroux

Stoic Letter 15

Here’s how I used to set goals for myself. I looked at what kind of outcome I desired and then set a goal to achieve that thing. When it came to my career, I always looked at how much money I wanted to make.

So my goals looked like this: “I want to make $100K a year.” And when it came to my health, it would be this: “I want to put on 5 pounds of muscle.” That stuff never works. Can you relate to that?

How often have you been frustrated by your own goals? You set goals, things…


It’s practical, realistic, and honest

In 1994, Michael Jordan, the greatest basketball player of all time, retired from the Chicago Bulls and tried to pursue a professional baseball career. Some say Michael was paying tribute to his father, who used to be a semi-pro baseball player and loved the game immensely.

From the start, everyone criticized Jordan’s baseball skills. His swings weren’t particularly good, and he was a slow runner in baseball terms.

The funny thing is that Michael Jordan’s first sport was baseball. And he was pretty good as a kid, but at 31 years old, he simply wasn’t good enough for the MLB…


Unlike other life theories, this is not about becoming successful

Imagine that your life is like a wheel with six spokes. A wheel will keep moving if one of your spokes is broken or missing. But if multiple spokes are not working, your wheel will collapse.

To live an optimal life, you need to make sure all your spokes are tight. With a functional wheel, you’ll be able to move forward smoothly. In contrast, if your spokes aren’t tight, you might risk a bump in the wheel, which will make it hard to move.

I call this Six Spokes Theory. For most of us, this is the best way to…


You know how people say, “It takes money to make money”?

When Malcolm X was in prison, he discovered the power of books. He was physically caged within the walls of the prison, but his mind was free.

He spent most of his six and a half years in prison reading books — day and night. In The Autobiography of Malcolm X, he wrote about his nightly reading habits:

“At one-hour intervals the night guards paced past every room. Each time I heard the approaching footsteps, I jumped into bed and feigned sleep. And as soon as the guard passed, I got back out of bed onto the floor area of…


A successful person is simply someone who achieves what they set out to do

I stumbled upon this question on Quora the other day: “What is the best indicator of a person who will become successful one day?”

The person is trying to reverse-engineer success. If you know what predicts success, you can simply adopt those indicators. But there’s one problem. What is success? People get fussed up about this all the time.

To me, a successful person is simply someone who achieves what they set out to do. My mother’s goal was to become a good mother. My father’s goal was to own a business. …


Become friends with chaos

The reason we make plans is straightforward: We want a specific outcome in our lives. As we mature and experience more, we’re able to see patterns that teach us how to anticipate something.

We become better planners as we grow. But the world is full of surprises, and most of us eventually learn shit never goes according to plan.

There’s no going around it. Your plans, goals, and routines — they will all come crashing down in the face of major unexpected events:

  • The untimely death of a beloved family member, partner or friend
  • Pregnancies
  • Accidents
  • Obsessive love affairs
  • Global…


Wisdom from Charlie Munger

We’ve all heard about the magic of compounding interest. Something equally powerful is mental compounding interest. Here’s some advice from the investor Charlie Munger that I read in the book, University of Berkshire Hathaway:

“He (Munger) got the idea to add a mental compound interest as well. So he decided he would sell himself the best hour of the day to improving his own mind, and the world could buy the rest of his time. He said it may sound selfish, but it worked. …

The Blog Of Darius Foroux

Creator of the Stoic Letter | Author of 7 books and 6 courses at dariusforoux.com

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