A Good Day

Stoicism in a nutshell

Welcome to The Stoa Letter, the newsletter on Stoic theory and practice.

πŸ›οΈ Theory

To say it’s a good day is difficult, and the good day itself passes on. It’s up to us to conserve the good day in a wordy, florid memory, sprinkling new flowers and new stars over the fields and skies of the empty, fleeting outer world.

Fernando Pessoa, The Book of Disquiet

Did you have a good day?

Many people will only say they had a good day if good things happen to them. 

In this common view, the day went well if what you wanted to happen, happened to you. Listeners often expect an answer along those lines too.

This common view places the quality of days in the hands of other people and external circumstances. 

For a Stoic, whether or not they had a good day depends on their decisions and judgments alone. They can experience joy in any circumstance.

A good day, like a good life, doesn’t depend on what happens to you, but on who you are and what you do.

As are your repeated imaginations so will your mind be, for the soul is dyed by its imaginations. Dye it, then, in a succession of imaginations like these: for instance, where it is possible to live, there also it is possible to live well.

Meditations, 5.16

🎯 Action

To the best of your ability, have a good day.

πŸ›οΈ We just added 5 new morning meditations to the Stoa app. Check them out here. If you have the app on iPhone, use this link.

What's more important to you right now? 

🟩🟩🟩🟩🟩🟩 βž• Fostering healthy ambition (17)

🟨🟨🟨🟨⬜️⬜️ βž– Eliminating unhealthy ambition (12)

Reader Mike rightly added:

I think they are intertwined and buffer one another. Hard to separate.

πŸ’¬ Great line from Rick on X:

What did you think about today's letter?

Login or Subscribe to participate in polls.

Join the conversation

or to participate.