“I am your teacher and you are learning in my school. My aim is to bring you to completion, unhindered, free from compulsive behavior, unrestrained, without shame, free, flourishing, and happy, looking to God in things great and small — your aim is to learn and diligently practice all these things. Why then don’t you complete the work, if you have the right aim and I have both the right aim and right preparation? What is missing? … The work is quite feasible, and is the only thing in our power… Let go of the past. We must only begin. Believe me and you will see.”EPICTETUS, DISCOURSES, 2.19.29-34
The answer is right in front of you. You’ve come to the right place; you’ve found the solution. All you have to do is just put in work. That’s it. And this is the truth shared with us today in The Daily Stoic book.
You’ve made a decision to better yourself, to improve yourself. You’ve studied the philosophy of stoicism and found it to resonate with you, and you’ve learned some nuggets of wisdom that you’d like to implement. What’s stopping you? It’s time to just begin the work, and get started.
Don’t aim for perfection; that’s not the goal anyway. The goal is to just begin, and do the important work that you know you need to do. “We must only begin”, as Epictetus says above. Enough preparing and thinking. Just begin.