Tim Ferriss Shares the Ancient Wisdom He Lives His Life By

Lessons from Seneca.

Image courtesy of Rachel Kaplan 

On the latest episode of The Thrive Global Podcast with iHeartRadio, Thrive Global founder and CEO Arianna Huffington sat down with productivity guru, entrepreneur and best-selling author Tim Ferriss to talk about his path to discovering the ancient wisdom of Stoicism, and how it’s changed his life.

Ferriss told Huffington that it all began with a quote from the Roman Stoic and philosopher Seneca: “We often suffer more in imagination than in reality.”

Stoicism is an ancient philosophy that proposes that people can find happiness through acceptance of what is. But Ferriss told Huffington, “Stoicism is not taking life like a cow in the rain,” but rather “an operating system for making better decisions and being less emotionally reactive.” This includes moving from being a “version of yourself that may be controlled by emotions,” to being “aware and helped by emotions,” he said.

According to Ferriss, in one letter, Seneca advised people to, once a month, “set aside a certain number of days during which you’ll eat the cheapest of food, wear the roughest of dress, and ask yourself all the while, ‘Is this the condition I so feared?’” Ferriss also offered a modern example: one Stoicism-fan friend of his occasionally camps in his living room, drinks cheap instant coffee and eats oatmeal for every meal.

“So his entire week, let’s just call it, costs $15,” Ferriss told Huffington, adding that “what this allows him to do is inoculate himself against the fear of certain types of loss, so that he is less prone to the fear of missing out, the FOMO, the guilt, doing things out of obligation.”

To hear the full conversation, click here.

You can also listen to the Thrive Global Podcast internationally for free on iTunes and Stitcher.

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