No Matter What

“Never shirk the proper dispatch of your duty, no matter if you are freezing or hot, groggy or well-rested, vilified or praised, not even if dying or pressed by other demands. Even dying is one of the important assignments of life and, in this as in all else, make the most of your resources to do well the duty at hand.”


We all have responsibilities. Marcus Aurelius had a lot of responsibilities, but I’m sure you do too. And I do too. We all have tasks that we’re duty-bound to complete.

There are a lot of questions that pop up throughout the day, and they challenge us on our duties. Author Ryan Holiday lays them out well in today’s entry in The Daily Stoic. With all these concerns, doubts, and questions flying in our face all day, it can sometimes be confusing as what exactly you should do. Competing priorities sometimes make it cloudy as to what we should spend our time on.

difficult choice

The truth is that the right thing is usually clear, if we look right at it and use our intuition. If you trust your instincts, trust your gut — the answer is usually right there in front of us, in terms of what’s the right thing to do at any given moment.

But the right thing — our duty — is usually the hard thing. Excuses are easy, of course. But we should choose the right thing, the harder thing, instead.

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