“I have often wondered how it is that every man loves himself more than all the rest of men, but yet sets less value on his own opinion of himself than on the opinion of others.”
― Marcus Aurelius, Meditations
I think this is one of the best quotes from Marcus Aurelius. He just needed one sentence to drop a truth we could be talking hours and hours on end.
Why are we so concerned with fame and admiration? To the point of it being normalized? Everyone is looking to be admired all the time, Instagram makes millions of dollars because of it. But will fame and admiration bring you what you’re looking for? What is that you’re looking for?
We believe that fame and admiration will make us happy, but, if you think about it, the price that you have to pay for the two invisible commodities, is higher than the benefits they confer, with the price being one of the highest prices you’ll ever have to pay, your freedom.
If you seek fame for fame’s sake, you’ll have to do things that may not be in your best interest, maybe you’ll have to lie about what you think or believe it’s true (OMG! aren’t you something! Ugh) so that you can be admired and accepted by the person or the persons from whom you’re looking admiration.
And at the end of the day, it is not up to you whether somebody likes you or not. You can do everything right and I promise that someone will find something in you that they don’t like, like your haircut.
The only thing you can really control is yourself and your actions, it’s the only space where you are truly free.
It’s not about being oblivious to other people either, you’re still part of the community and we’d love if you behaved yourself to our benefit. But, if you want to be loved, why don’t you focus on being lovely first? It’s a way better strategy than morphing your identity in weird ways.
“You will always find those who think they know what is your duty better than you know it.”
― Ralph Waldo Emerson
If you value your freedom, you’ll have to forego wanting to be liked by everyone, it’s a fool’s venture that you’ll never really win, so just stop playing that dumb game.
Thanks for reading,
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