Choose today

In recent years I’ve been choosing a touch phrase. The phrases are reminders, intended to cue up a larger train of thought.

For 2023 the phrase is “Choose today”. It is inspired by two different quotes, both having withstood the test of time:

Stick to what’s in front of you—idea, action, utterance. This is what you deserve. You could be good today. But instead you choose tomorrow.

~ Marcus Aurelius, 8.22

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…and one of my daily reflection prompts from Epictetus:

So is it possible to be altogether faultless? No, that is impractical; but it is possible to strive continuously not to commit faults. For we shall have cause to be satisfied if, by never relaxing our attention, we shall escape at least a few faults. But as it is, when you say, “I will begin to pay attention tomorrow,” you should know that what you are really saying is this: “I will be shameless, inopportune, abject today; it will be in the power of others to cause me distress; I will get angry, I will be envious today.” See how many evils you are permitting yourself. But if it is well for you to pay attention tomorrow, how much better would it be today? If it is to your advantage tomorrow, it is much more so today, so that you may be able to do the same again tomorrow, and not put it off once more, to the day after tomorrow.

~ Epictetus, 4.12.19-21

Indeed. If it is to my advantage tomorrow, it is much more so today.

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