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  • Doug Belshaw 6:30 am on April 29, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: anxiety, ,   

    We must also make ourselves flexible, to avoid becoming too devoted to the plans we have formed, and we should make the transition to the state that chance has brought us to without dreading a change either in our purpose or our condition, provided that we are not falling prey to fickleness, a vice entirely at odds with repose. For stubbornness, from which Fortune often forces some concession, must involve anxiety and wretchedness, and at the same time fickleness is much harder to bear when it fails to control itself in any situation. Both are hostile to tranquility, both the inability to undergo any change and the ability to show endurance. Above all it is necessary for the mind to be withdrawn into itself, abjuring all external interests; let it have confidence in itself and take pleasure in itself, let it admire its own possessions, withdraw as far as possible from those of others, let it not feel losses and put a kind interpretation even kn adversities.

    Seneca, ‘On the Tranquility of the Mind’

     
  • Doug Belshaw 3:45 pm on April 16, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , anxiety, Walter Anderson   

    Nothing diminishes anxiety faster than action.

    Walter Anderson
     
  • Doug Belshaw 8:30 am on February 28, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: anxiety, Empedocles, ,   

    You are composed of three parts: body, breath, and mind. The first two merely belong to you in the sense that you are responsible for their care; the last alone is truly yours. If, then, you put away from this real self – from your understanding, that is – everything that others do or say and everything you yourself did or said in the past, together with every anxiety about the future, and everything affecting the body or its partner breath that is outside your own control, as well as everything that swirls about you in the eddy of outward circumstance, so that the powers of your mind, kept thus aloof and unspotted from all that destiny can do, may live their own life in independence, doing what is just, consenting to what befalls, and speaking what is true – if, I say, you put away from this master-faculty of yours every such clinging attachment, and whatever lies in the years ahead or the years behind, teaching yourself to become what Empedocles calls a ‘totally rounded orb, in its own rotundity joying’, and to be concerned solely with the life which you are now living, the life of the present moment, then until death comes you will be able to pass the rest of your days in freedom from all anxiety, and in kindliness and good favour with the deity within you.

    Marcus Aurelius

     
  • Doug Belshaw 6:46 am on December 6, 2019 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: anxiety, ,   

    Many of us with anxiety don’t look like we’ve got a problem because outwardly we function ludicrously well. Or so the merry story goes. Our anxiety sees us make industrious lists and plans, run purposefully from one thing to the net, and move fast up stairs and across traffic intersections. We are a picture of efficiency and energy, always on the move, always doing. We’re Rabbit from Winnie the Pooh, always flitting about convinced everyone depends on us to make things happen and to be there when they do. And to generally attend to happenings. But beneath the veneer we’re being pushed by fear and doubt and a voice that tells us we’re a bad husband, an insufficient sister, we’re wasting time, we’re not producing enough, that we turn everything into a clusterfuck. Sure, we look busy, but mostly we’re busy avoiding things. So we tie ourselves up in stupid paper-shuffling tasks that shield us from ever getting around to the important stuff. Or the tough stuff. Sarah Wilson, First, We Make The Beast Beautiful
     
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