December 5, 2021

You Don’t Own That

Anything that can be prevented, taken away, or coerced is not a person’s own - but those things that can’t be blocked are their own.

- Epictetus, (50-138), Discourses.

The conservationist Daniel O’Brien has said that he doesn’t “own” his several-thousand-acre buffalo ranch in South Dakota, he just lives there while the bank lets him make mortgage payments on it.

It’s a joke about the economic realities of ranching, but it also hints at the idea that land doesn’t belong to one individual, that it will far outlast us and our descendants.

Marcus Aurelius used to say that we don’t own anything and that even our lives are held in trust. We may claw and fight and work to own things, but those things can be taken away in a second.

The same goes for other things we like to think are “ours” but are equally precarious: our status, our physical health or strength, our relationships. How can these really be ours if something other than us—fate, bad luck, death, and so on—can dispossess us of them without notice?

So what do we own? Just our lives—and not for long.

Note: This article was published in "The Daily Stoic" by Ryan Holiday and Stephen Hanselman, available on Amazon.

We Don't Own. Shouldn't we Take Care?

We only own our lives. And with life we own body, mind and soul.

What about looking after the foundation of life, our own body with a healthy lifestyle that gives us the chance to own it and enjoy as long as possible?

We only have one body. Why not look after it?

Exercise, nutrition and sleep are key elements for a healthy body. It's not too complicated to make these three areas first priority and support them for your own good.

Ready for a Little Exercise?

Ok, there we go. Take pen and paper and write:

  1. 5 Reasons not to take care of your body and not to make sure you exercise, eat healthy and sleep enough.
  2. 5 Reasons why it does make sense exercise, eat healthy and sleep enough.
  3. Your conclusions and three (only) new habits you will immediate adopt to help your healthy lifestyle.

It's about you and you only!

This is figureoutable and doable. Go do it and never forget the 72 Hours Rule. Agree on actions with yourself (take it seriously like a contract) and move it within less than 72! 

Energy, Hydration and Recovery

Three phases are key for your workout: Prior, where you want to be energetic and focused, During where you want to be hydrated and persistent and After with the requirement of quick recovery.

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Books are the plane, and the train, and the road.
They are the destination, and the journey.
They are home.

- Anna Quindlen

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