|The Lounge | Champions | The Wire | Schedule | Audio | Arcade | The Top Ten | Historical | Email | Video|
Five Great Ideas From Aristotle
It was Socrates who said that the purpose of philosophy is to help each of us become "an excellent human". That seems like a respectable and reasonable big-picture goal for every person on the planet.
But what about the specifics? How do we become excellent humans? How can we use philosophy in our everyday lives to help us succeed in this most important goal as homo sapiens?
The surprising thing about philosophy is that it is incredibly user-friendly if you take it in small doses. For thousands of years, thoughtful individuals have contemplated the meaning of life. Many of the greatest philosophers spoke eloquently about the challenges we all face today in words that are easily understood and truly inspiring.
Don't believe it? Let's start with a few thoughts from Aristotle. The student of Plato, who was the student of Socrates, Aristotle lived in the third century B.C. But don't hold that against him! Aristotle was full of interesting ideas, and he had quite a sense of humor as well. He's a guy you could imagine sitting in your kitchen, engaging in a memorable conversation over a shared bottle of wine. Think of him as a really wise friend, and use his ideas to help you TODAY to become a more excellent human.
Aristotle believed that everything had a purpose. He stated that our purpose as humans is to think in order to live a good life. That's it. As long as we continue to contemplate the universe and our role in it, we are fulfilling our purpose.
So, to help you contemplate the universe today, here are five inspiring thoughts from our friend, Aristotle:
"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit."
What is it that you repeatedly do? Greet people on the street, let another car into a busy street in front of you, leave nice tips for frazzled waitpersons, read to your children, phone your elderly aunt? What do your habits say about you? Is that the message you want to send?
How can you change your habits or adopt new ones to reflect your desire to become more excellent? What excellent acts can you do repeatedly so that they become a habit? What can you do TODAY to intentionally start a habit that will lead to excellence? Pick something simple and just get started.
"Education is the best provision for old age."What are you learning these days?
How are you spending your free time? Take a look at how you are including learning in your daily life. Do you read? If so, are you learning from it? Do you watch television? Yes, it can be educational, but seriously analyze your viewing habits and see if you can't incorporate more learning and less vegetating.
Don't pick something boring. Choose ways to learn that excite and inspire you. A cooking class through your local community college? A new sport? A stack of library books on a country you're hoping to visit someday? Pursue your interests with a passion, and you will always continue learning. Promise yourself you'll always have interesting things to talk about when you are old-and this doesn't mean ailments and treatments! Learn now how to ignite your own curiosity and pursue learning as a lifelong adventure.
"It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it."
We all do it--we hear an idea, and we immediately attach ourselves to an opinion about it without really giving it the time it takes to form a reasoned conclusion. The problem with smart people is that we tend to use our intelligence to argue in defense of our chosen opinions. We'd be a whole lot wiser if we did less arguing and more thinking!
The next time someone makes a suggestion you don't like or states an opinion you disagree with, try this: Wait three minutes before denouncing it. Now, this doesn't that you should just sit there, fuming or smug or disinterested. Instead, "entertain" the thought. Ask questions. Show interest. Be open, engaged and nonconfrontational. When your three minutes are up, you can feel free to express your original opinion. More often than not, your original opinion will have changed a bit because you have spent some time holding a thought without attacking it.
The trick here is to separate the thought from the thinker. Are you sure you don't dislike the thought because you dislike the thinker? We all have people in our lives who push our buttons. Take the high road. Entertain the thought. Your eventual rebuttal will be more easily accepted after you've shown that you have carefully considered the concept. Try this at work, try it with your friends, try it with your family. This is a surefire path to excellence.
"What lies in our power to do, also lies in our power not to do."
Ah, yes. Those bad habits? You can change them. If you had the initiative at some point to do something, you can choose to stop doing it. This goes for overeating, smoking, drinking too much, and all the usual bad habits.
It also hold true for things we don't even think of as habits anymore-watching too much television, driving instead of walking, reading nothing but celebrity magazines, gossiping, spending too much time shopping, etc. If you haven't always done it, you don't have to continue doing it. You do have the power to make changes.
"Well begun is half done."
We all understand that setting a goal, doing the research, and making a plan will increase the likelihood that our chosen task will be successfully completed. Whether it's a home improvement project, a vacation schedule, or a tricky new recipe, proper preparation will save us a lot of time and effort.
Start using Aristotle's ideas today to help you become an excellent human. Make your best acts your best habits. Learn something new each day. Entertain contrary thoughts. Begin to undo bad habits. Prepare yourself for excellence.
Aristotle would be so proud.
About The Author
Maya Talisman Frost is a mind masseuse. Her course, Massage Your Mind!: Defining Your Life Philosophy, has inspired thinkers in over 70 countries around the world. She is the publisher of the Friday Mind Massage, a free weekly ezine serving up a satisfying blend of clarity, comfort and comic relief. To learn more, visit http://www.massageyourmind.com or http://www.mindmasseuse.com.
Patriots and Seahawks derive motivation â€” and success â€” from late in the draft - The Providence Journal
Creativity and Innovation Management - Motivation
Motivation in creativity and innovation is more important than personality traits. This is like possessing high intelligence - one must be motivated to improve and apply it.
How Much Fight Is In You?
"All the adversity I've had in my life, all my troubles and obstacles, have strengthened me..
Self Confidence: How To Build Your Confidence In Three Simple Steps
To Feel Confident - A C TA new, more exciting and happier life is yours when you know how to build your confidence. You can do it with these three simple steps.
Motivation - How to Design a Life
"Have you ever felt like you've become the worst possible version of yourself?" - Tom Hanks in "You've Got Mail"Have you ever been relaxing at the movies, enjoying a nice lite movie, only to get blown away by a line said in passing?That's what happened recently as my wife and I watched "You've Got Mail" with Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan. The couple are having an ongoing email courtship, exchanging messages in the wee hours of the night, when this question comes out of nowhere: "have you ever felt like you've become the worst possible version of yourself?"And I thought we were just going to the movies.
4 Qualities of Highly Successful People
What if you can be, do or have anything you want, what would you desire in your life?Now do you believe it can happen? Yes? No? In the words of Henry Ford, "If you think you can do a thing or think you can't do a thing, you're right."Well then what actually happens for those people who do seem to get everything they desire?Let's take a closer look.
Resolution Revolution: 3 Tips For Creating Real Change in the New Year
'Tis the season once again for parties, champagne, noisemakers..
Dont You Quit!
"A man who has nothing to die for is not fit to live." -Martin LutherYou sat in that secret corner of your room.
Qualia and Quanta
Ah, those New Year's resolutions.I suppose that the passage of another calendar year serves to remind us that there are an infinite number of things to do and a finite amount of time to do them in and so we must prioritize.
What Gets Your Ass Out Of Bed?
How to Use Discouragement to Motivate Yourself
Ever feel like giving up? Do you ever feel so discouraged that even one more day of frustration will be too much too handle?Everyone gets discouraged at times only there are a number of key differences between people who keep on going and those who give up:1 Focus On Your Goal Not On Your ProblemsOne of my mentors is a highly successful property developer and he loves solving problems. All day long he can take on one problem after the next and just keep going.
A Turning Point
19 years ago, I was a young working mother at 28, independent and working for a prestigious company, until circumstances made me choose between family and career. After going through weighing my options, I chose to become a full-time Homemaker because I believed that family should come first if the situation would permit.
For Those Who Have Suffered!
As one who has suffered from the long, term effects of trauma I feel compelled to share some experience and hope with those who seek to heal themselves and create true quality of life.First there must be a desire for change.
Listen to win SalesVery few people are good listeners. In your everyday life how many people can you remember who are good listeners, people who remembered your name or what you said.
Power Of The Mind
THOUGHTSJames Allen in his Book "As a Man Thinketh"says Mind is the Master power that moulds and makes, and man is mind and evermore he takes , The tool of thought, and shaping what he wills, brings forth a thousand joys, a thousand ills. He thinks in secret and it comes to pass.
The Top Ten Strategies to Employ When You Feel Like Quitting
Ever feel like quitting? "Are you kidding?" you ask, "A better question would be, 'How many times TODAY have I felt like quitting?' " Sure. We've all felt like "throwing in the towel" at one time or another.
Change Your Life For The Better!
Are you still hoping and waiting for someone somewhere to come to your rescue, wave a magic wand and instantaneously change your life for the better?Are you praying that you will one day win the lottery and dramatically alter the financial quality of your life?Are you sitting behind your desk, daydreaming and hoping to one day rise to the top level of management without much effort and hard work?Are you hiding in the background, silently praying and hoping that you will find favor, get noticed and be thrust into the limelight of your destiny?If you are tired of hoping and endlessly waiting for something positive to happen or someone to come to your rescue, make a deliberate decision today to take charge of your own life and begin to lead a fulfilled and productive life.4 things to consider as you decide to change your life for the better.
The Top 10 Ways to Overcome Procrastination
When a person is bored or uninterested, certain tasks and projects can seem like torture! This feeling usually leads to procrastination, and procrastination often leads to guilt. Here are some practical ways to avoid these situations and overcome procrastination:1.
How To Motivate Yourself For Success?
I was having coffee with my friend the other day. He just joined a multi-level marketing company.
Fear of Failure
The fear of failure is more deadly than failure itself. The fear of failure paints so many imaginary scenarios which petrifies you and renders you immobile.
Perseverance As A Virtue
"Through perseverance many people win success out of what seemed destined to be certain failure." - Benjamin Disraeli (1804 - 1881) - British Statesman, Prime MinisterLet's face it: life is tough.
Section Site Map - Submit News - Feedback - Comments - Advertise with Us
Copyright © 2006 Luminati Inc. All rights reserved.