The Fantastic Life

Stoicism Made Simple

I have been into Stoicism for some years now and have written a few LIFEies about this ancient school of thought in the past.  I have had a number of people ask me how to dive deeper into the philosophy.  Here are a few ways:


–Read the article below — it’s a GREAT summary of the philosophy and roadmap for practicing it in your life.  I bet you are already farther along the path than you know.


–Order this book and read one page a day: The Daily Stoic: 366 Meditations on Wisdom, Perseverance, and the Art of Living,  I read it every year for 3 years.  It`s that good.


–Follow Daily Stoic on Instagram for daily quick bites and thoughts.


I am always interested in hearing more if you have thoughts on Stoicism.





The Fantastic Life Rule # 7
Stay Out of the Gap

Sometimes, the answer to crossing the gap between where you are and where you want to be is simply a matter of changing your mindset



Change Your Way Of Thinking

A Simple Stoic Handbook

By What is Stoicism| Published on December 6, 2021

Note: All graphics in this handbook created by Pooran. Check his work out here.


If a happy life is the product of our way of thinking, then we need to be mindful of when that thinking is letting us down.

The Stoics told us that our judgements are within our control but it’s easy to fall into negative thought patterns and thereby cloud those judgements.

With a little self-awareness we can halt these negative thought patterns and reframe them into something a lot more constructive.

To help with that, here is a short Stoic Handbook you can make use of every day. It consists of 20 common negative thoughts along with guidance on how to transform them in a positive way.

Chapter 1: Gratitude


“I have nothing to be grateful for.”


“I am grateful I woke up today.”

— Gratitude for just being alive

— Gratitude for breathing in and out

— Some days that’s enough, maybe it’s enough every day

Chapter 2: Comparison


“My friend is achieving more than me.”


“Life is not a competition.”

— You’re on your path, they’re on theirs

— Don’t get pulled away from your mission for the sake of someone else’s

Chapter 3: Time


“I’m bored, I wish the clock would move faster.”


“I value every moment I have.”

— Seize and savour the passing moments

— Some go slow and some go fast

— But once they pass, they’re gone

Chapter 4: Death


“I have time, I’ll live for years.”


“I could die tomorrow.”

— Focus on the important things

— Be present with friends and family

— Don’t waste time on frivolous bullsh*t

Chapter 5: Comfort


“If I stay in my comfort zone, difficulty won’t find me.”


“If I expand my comfort zone, I will find difficulty and beat it .”

— Turning discomfort into comfort is a superpower

— Short term, facing discomfort gives purpose

— Long term, facing discomfort conquers fears

Chapter 6: Doing Good


“If I do a favour, I expect one back.”


“I do good deeds for their own sake.”

— Do favours

— Do help

— Do give

— Don’t keep score

Chapter 7: Entertainment


TV, news, arguing on social media


Books, podcasts, learning on social media

— Most news is here today, gone tomorrow

— It is created to provoke a reaction (and therefore upset your tranquility)

— Be intentional with your consumption

Chapter 8: Attachment


“I fear losing everything I have.”


“I appreciate what I have but accept it is on loan from the universe.”

— Attachment creates tension

— Freedom comes with the dropping of attachment

— “Without this thing, I can’t be happy” is a false belief

Chapter 9: Criticism


“I’m useless if I get criticized.”


“Criticism is just another opinion, their words don’t touch me.”

— Examine criticism

— If it’s constructive, use it to improve

— If not, laugh at it

Chapter 10: Praise


“I’m useless if I don’t receive praise.”


“I do my best work regardless of how it is received.”

— Praise is just an added judgement

— It has no bearing on your true worth

— The important thing is self-worth

Chapter 11: Adversity


“I can’t cope with difficulty.”


“I seek the value in whatever happens.”

— We can’t choose when adversity strikes

— But we can choose how we react to it

— We are often capable of more than we think

Chapter 12: Opinion


“People always need to hear my take.”


“Not everything requires my opinion.”

— No need to rush to judgement

— No need to always offer the judgement when it has been formed

Chapter 13: Judgement


“My friend let me down, they upset me.”


“If I am upset, the upset is in me — therefore I have the power to remove it.”

— We are not disturbed by events, people, things

— We are only disturbed by the views we take of them

Chapter 14: Emotion


“Negative emotions are a weakness.”


“Negative emotions can be used as a signal to change something .”

— Feeling instinctive emotions is inevitable

— Allowing them to result in negative actions is optional

— Stop, examine, find the root cause of the emotion

Chapter 15: Failure


“Ugh, I failed — just my luck.”


“No, not just my luck — just EVERYONE’S luck. Just Fate.”

— Cursing our luck changes nothing

— If we learn, failure can lead to self improvement & increased resilience

— We’re “lucky” that we have the strength within us to keep going

Chapter 16: Fear


“I’m scared to try, the outcome will be bad.”


“I need to understand what I’m afraid of and prepare as best I can.”

— Curiosity — What am I afraid of?

— Understanding — Is the fear justified? How could I recover from the worst outcome?

— Action — Take the first step

Chapter 17: Regret


“This thing happened, and it is terrible!”


“This thing happened, what can I do about it .”

— Constantly test your mental impressions

— Removing emotional language can take the sting out of persistent worries

Chapter 18: Discipline


“Discipline ruins my freedom.”


“Discipline now means freedom later .”

— Discipline in diet makes you healthier

— Discipline in exercise makes you stronger

— Discipline in work makes you reliable

— Discipline opens up space for so much in life

Chapter 19: Control


“I wish I could control more.”


“I’m lucky I only control my own actions, otherwise my responsibilities would be endless.”

— You control your opinion, intention, desire/aversion

— In other words, whatever is your own doing

— Focus on this, accept the rest

Chapter 20: Practice


“I can’t change my thinking, it’s not that easy.”


“It will require effort to change my thinking, but it’s worth it.”

— We’re all “programmed” in certain ways

— It takes effort to reprogram

— How long are you going to wait before you demand a happy life for yourself?

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