Sonny Rollins on Life

What I need to know is that being a person who understands that giving is better than getting is the proper way to live. Live your life now in a positive way. Help people if you can. Don’t hurt people. That works perfectly for me, man.

~ Sonny Rollins / NYT, February 21, 2020

Jean Miller on Patience

My biggest lesson is to be more patient. I used to worry about things but now I don’t. I’ve realised there’s a rhyme and reason for everything.

~ Jean Miller, 94 year-old / Guardian, 23rd February 2017

Charlie Munger on Expectations

“This modern world is radically different and I’m not sure if I were starting out in your world how well I would do,” he said. “It would be a lot harder than it was to get ahead in the world the way it was when I came up. My best advice, I think you would be happier if you reduced your expectations.”

Charlie Munger  / FT, February 12 2020

Janan Ganesh on Happiness

It takes minimal life experience to know that happiness comes from a small number of disproportionately important things. Perhaps as few as two. One is a fulfilling job. The other is a vital private life, which could mean, according to taste, devotion to one person or what George Michael hailed as “fast love”.

~ Janan Ganesh / FT, February 7 2020

Seneca on Excellence

“Excellence withers without an adversary.”

~ Seneca

William B. Irvine on Pleasure

“…though certain activities are pleasurable, engaging in those activities will disrupt our tranquility, and the tranquility lost will outweigh the pleasure gained.”

~ Irvine, William B. / A Guide to the Good Life: The Ancient Art of Stoic Joy (p. 227). Oxford University Press. Kindle Edition.

Seneca on Revenge

“How much better to heal than seek revenge from injury.”

~ Seneca

Marcus Aurelius on Ambition

Ambition means tying your well-being to what other people say or do… sanity means tying it to your own actions.

~ Marcus Aurelius

Marcus Aurelius on Harm

“Choose not to be harmed and you won’t feel harmed. Don’t feel harmed, and you haven’t been.”

~ Marcus Aurelius

The Daily Stoic on Control

How to Control Your Anger like a Stoic:

– Identify the costs of anger
– Identify what’s in your control
– Accept that there are going to be stupid people
– Don’t get upset in advance
– Let go of the past
– Get physical/exercise
– Look for something to be grateful for

~ The Daily Stoic / Twitter

Seneca on Vices

“I am satisfied if each day I make some reduction in the number of my vices and find fault with my mistakes.”

~ Seneca

Deborah Ross on Happiness

Sunshine on your face, the sound of rain, the song of a bird, gazing up at a starry sky and all the other things that can distract you from the fact that you have amounted to exactly nothing after all these years and life is unrelentingly bleak. Because that’s all “happiness” is, really.

~ Deborah Ross / Times, Thursday 06 February, 2020

Edward Lucas on Flow

But saving my mental energies helps me achieve the day’s greatest pleasure: periods of intense, unbroken concentration.

~ Edward Lucas / Times, February 03, 2020

Jennifer Doudna on Perspective

“When I get frustrated I try to take the long view,” she says. “I try to imagine how I would feel 50 or 100 years from now, if I came back and I was looking at this whole story.”

~ Jennifer Doudna / Financial Times, January 31st 2020

Tony Fouhse on Action

Stasis equals death, just like thought minus action equals zero.

~ Tony Fouhse / Drool

Tony Fouhse on Problems

Fucked if I know. I suppose that these questions will get worked out by the doing. After all, that’s how most stuff gets worked out . . . by applying yourself to the problem.

~ Tony Fouhse / Drool

Tony Fouhse on Leaving a Trace

…Like my photo projects it’s a way to keep track and to reckon, to try to understand myself and the world, and to leave a trace of my passage through.

~ Tony Fouhse / Drool

Tony Fouhse on the System

Of course, if the approval of the power brokers that represent the status quo is what you need, if your validation will only come from having your work placed on the white walls of the white cubes, I’m afraid you’re pretty much stuck with playing their game, using their rules.

~ Tony Fouhse / Drool


Seneca on Misfortune

“Constant misfortune brings this one blessing: to whom it always assails, it eventually fortifies.”

~ Seneca

Paul Theroux on Not Coming Back

You go away for a long time and return a different person – you never come all the way back.

~ Paul Theroux

Ted Danson on Integrity

If you’ve got integrity, it will smack you very hard when you fuck up.

~ Ted Danson

Jerry Lee Lewis on Health

I got good health, I still got pretty hair, I’m still rocking. That’s sitting on top of the world about as high as you’re going to get.

~ Jerry Lee Lewis

Epictetus on Anger

Any person capable of angering you becomes your master.

~ Epictetus

Viktor Frankl on Striving

“What man actually needs is not a tensionless state but rather the striving and struggling for some goal worthy of him.”

~ Viktor Frankl

Viktor Frankl on Difficulties

“When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.”

~ Viktor Frankl

Brian Cox on the Long Haul

‘…It’s the long haul for you. You’ve got to understand that. You will have moderate success in your career. But it is the long haul that counts.’ And he was absolutely right.

~ Brian Cox / Financial Times, 17th January 2020

Monty Don on Life Satisfaction

If you had to rate your satisfaction with your life so far, out of 10, what would you score?
10. I’ve been so lucky. I’ve loved and been loved, and in the end that’s all everybody ever wants.

~ Monty Don / Financial Times, 17th January 2020

Don McCullin on Distractions

“We all need distractions in our lives.”

~ Don McCullin / Financial Times, 17th January, 2020