Then, in some great hour of your life, when you stand face to face with some awful trial, when the structure of your ambition and life-work crumbles in a moment, you will be brave. You can then fold your arms calmly, look out undismayed and undaunted upon the ashes of your hope, upon the wreck of what you have faithfully built, and with brave heart and unfaltering voice you may say: “So let it be—I will build again.”
— William George Jordan, “The Majesty of Calmness”
From Self Control, Its Kingship and Majesty, 1905
Seneca gives us the advice to teach, coach, and gently chide ourselves as we would a cherished but sick friend and not as a taskmaster. I’ve been trying to do this lately, and luckily, this site has helped me to do it. I have been re-watching a select few of the Ask a Stoic series. It has been a long enough time since I made them, that it really is like getting advice from someone else. So, in the ebb and flow of life, and amidst the actual advice received from several friends, I’ve been coaching myself.
I’m calling myself back to a daily practice. Relearning to note impressions, to gauge them, test them, and judiciously accept or deny them. I have this opportunity in this body work to re-read my own words from a time when I was more fully steeped in the practice of our School.
If you’ve been on the fence with philosophical journaling, let me point you here as an example why. You may only have an audience of one, yourself. But you my find that you heartily need that advice at some time.