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I heard about The Daily Stoic quite often in the past few years but I had an aversion to Ryan Holiday because he is a hunter.
It was my internal bias because I have no problem purchasing books from other authors whose personal hobbies I know nothing about and who might as well be racists for all I know. Hunters are no different from other individuals who exploit our fellow animals but Mr Holiday made my blood boil.
Imagine my surprise when I heard praise for this book on my favorite vegan podcast Food For Thought. I realized I needed permission from an advocate I look up to, to read a book that was written by a hunter.
So I bought the book.
It took me about two days to finish it and another week to read it two more times because it was so well written and so thought-provoking.
I was not familiar with stoicism and what it meant. In my head, it was something that pretentious online entrepreneurs talked about while sipping their bulletproof coffee. And I have zero intention of being like them.
Boy did I need to read this book and hear its message.
The main lessons I took from The Daily Stoic were about doing my job and doing the right thing.
I was put on the floor while reading the book. Beforehand I was swimming in the clouds, bathing in my own ego and thinking of how it would feel good to be admired for being who I wanted to be. But that brings nothing to others.
I quite painfully came to the conclusion that the work I was doing was empty and lacking in value.
I was egocentric and corrupt on the inside – chasing the always disappearing future and thinking life has to be more than what it is.
Although morality is subjective, the majority of us do share common sense when it comes to thinking of how we should treat the elderly and how to address those who have different beliefs and values.
That means that we at least vaguely know what the right to do is in a certain situation.
Is littering good? Should I hit the person who is annoying me? How to approach a person who is making racist remarks?
We know what to do in these circumstances. But do we follow what we know to be the right thing?
I was asking myself this question over and over again while reading The Daily Stoic. Often I can fall asleep knowing I was making good choices throughout the day, but sometimes I don’t.
Why overthink the past and fear the future when I cannot even master the time in which I am currently existing in? This moment is all I have and all I need to ponder on – how to do the RIGHT thing and how to do MY job.
The Daily Stoic made me more realistic, and potentially a better person if I keep following the lessons I took from it.