On dealing with a wasteful life

  • We are very careful with our money . We are very protective if someone tries to encroach on our property. But if someone or something encroaches on our time then we don't seem to care. Be very aware of this critical blind spot.
  • Why are we so careless with our time? Because we live our life as though we will live forever.
  • We suffer from a "Foolish forgetfulness of our mortality". We put off well considered plans for our fiftieth or sixtieth year, while we know a lucky few have seen as many years!

The greatest obstacle to living is expectation , which depends on tomorrow and wastes today.

  • Ask yourself if you were to die tomorrow , would you be doing what you are doing now?
  • If we waste our life , nature will not give us any warnings or signals , "silently it will glide way". Pay attention.
  • We throw our time away as though it does not have any value, while it is a resource that we have the shortest supply of.Be very aware of where your time is spent. Ask yourself what is the purpose of every task you devote time to.
  • Do not waste your life by-
    • being driven by ambition that depends on the judgement of others
    • being driven premature ambition guided by greed.
    • being driven by materialism , extravagance and lust.
    • being a "Self-inflicted slave" serving your "superiors" for little or no return.
    • Having no fixed purpose and focusing on many things , with endless schemes and vacillations. We cannot accomplish anything with a mind that is stretched in many directions.
  • We lust success and power. Yet when we attain these we are not satisfied. The cost we pay for these is too high and we regret all the effort we have expended for a pointless endeavor.
  • We complain that our life is short , but it is not. It is long and generous. It seems short because we squander it away.

    Small is the part of life that we actually live

  • We make ourselves busy with stuff without thought.

    life for busy men is very short

  • Unknowingly we live our life solely for others and complain that we are busy and "need a holiday". Doing what you want with your life is branded as selfish. Live for yourself , be your own champion.

Notes from ON THE SHORTNESS OF LIFE by Seneca from Dialogues and Essays (Oxford World's Classics)