10 Stoic Traits That Will Make You Happy
At the beginning of this year, I was emotional, anxious, and a stressed person. I cared about everything going around me. I noticed people’s tone when they talked to me. I overanalyzed things. I often had the habit of going into the spiral loop of overthinking situations, even though they had no real significance. This habit took a total toll on me when the pandemic hit, and I was left alone in my house with all my stressful thoughts.
But the lockdown gave me an ample amount of time to deal with my thoughts and learn how to shift them into being happier.
I came across the lifestyle, “stoic,” and I knew that this was the way of living I wanted to in myself. I dived deep into the ins and out of being a “stoic” person and started to drift towards it. It changed everything.
I am now confident, focused and have a lot more clarity in my life. I take responsibility for my doings and don’t give my energy and time to things that don’t matter. I can say following the path of being stoic has transformed my life for better things.
‘’Most powerful is he; who has himself in his own power’’ — Seneca
Here are the ten traits that I consolidated into my life to lead it more peacefully —
1. Focus On What You Can Control
The first and most crucial trait of stoic people is that they focus only on what they can control. When you exclusively use your energy on things that you can control, you get better and more peaceful in life. Stoic people try to change things under their space. It all starts with self-awareness.
One of the things you can do to integrate into your life with ease is to start journaling. Journaling is one of the top-tier habits to have, and it’s there for a reason. When you see what you spend your whole day in, you can quickly figure out where you need to carve out time and where to put it.
2. What Feels Good Isn’t Necessarily Good For You
Joy > Pleasure
In the current time, we are so much involved in an instant pleasure that we don’t get anything done at a specified time. We look for instant gratification through television, drinks, or drugs that our brain has stopped taking challenges. Our brain is in a constant mood that if we can feel pleasure from these things, why bother working.
It is the #1 reason why people hate their jobs and look forward to the weekends.
I’m not telling you to stop drinking or binge-watching Netflix. But do them in moderation such that it isn’t your only source of pleasure.
Stoic people look for the real joy they get from doing real things — creative work and the job. They have trained their brain to get their dose of dopamine from doing hard things.
3. Anxiety Is a Choice
Stoic people understand that being anxious is a choice. When you get anxious, you are letting the external factors stress you out. The external factors that are not in your control. You have to understand that there’s no reason to stress out if you can’t control the things in motion, and if you can, then go and change it. There’s nothing to stress about it.
You have to focus and jot down things that are making you anxious. For example, I may get anxious about one of my article’s performance. But it’s not under my control how people will react to it. So, I just let it be. What is, in fact, under my control is its marketing. So I can focus on that instead.
4. Stoic People Are Determined
When you look around you, you’ll find many people who are just existing and not aspiring to achieve something in life. The very core principle of Ikigai: The Japanese Secret to a Long and Happy Life (affiliate link), best selling book, is that every person should have a purpose in their life. Something to make them get out of bed every morning.
Stoic people are not aimless; instead, they always have some specific goal: achieving which will make their life much better. Following the same rule, you should always have a goal to make you more productive and purposeful in life.
5. Statistics > Opinions
People who focus on statistics more and not on others or even their own opinions always outperform others. If your goal is to lose weight, you can’t just start dieting and look into the mirror and say — “I feel like I’m losing weight.” You should record the details like your daily weight, the amount of workout you are performing each day, and the macros you are taking in, and after that, optimizing each of them will yield much better results than cutting out your favorite foods.
There is immense power in journaling, that’s why all top-tier people do it.
6. Privilege To Endure Pain
We have become so used to living in our comfort zone that we have normalized procrastinating on crucial tasks. We don’t take new challenges in life and spend most of our high-energy time seeking instant gratification.
The only growth you can have is when you play at the edge of your comfort zone and continuously expand it.
People fear doing something because of being bad at it. But, being bad at something is the first step to being good at something.
7. Safety = Loss of Freedom
We have been stopped many times by our parents, teachers, or people to not try certain things in life. They try to keep us inside our comfort zone for our safety. But stoic people realize that being in the comfort zone offers no growth and can often be suffocating. Because of this imposition from the beginning of our life, we have adapted fear in ourselves to try something new in life.
For example, you may want to move to a better city to have a better lifestyle, but because you have been in your hometown for so long, people have convinced you that nothing is better out there.
Take that leap of faith.
8. Nobody Care Unless They Show
There are a lot of sweet-talk people around us. The majority of them won’t give a second of their life for your cause; instead, they will talk behind your back. Stoic people only give their attention to people who genuinely care for them and show them that they are worth keeping around. They don’t crave any sympathy or validation from others to feel good.
You should be your own biggest fan and only let those people in who stood with you in all your ups and downs.
9. Calm in Chaos
Responsibility is the only way to manifest.
Stoic people play the leader card and not the victim card. Let me explain this to you. There are a lot of people around us who act like victims. Whenever something terrible happens in their life, they start blaming the outer circumstances, the things they can’t control. They don’t take responsibility for any mishappens in their life to feel good about themselves. On the other hand, Stoic people analyze the situations and focus on things they could have done better. They ready themselves to be better the next time.
Journal your failures and your achievements. Note down your thought process, your highs and lows. Analyze the whole situation, prepare yourself for the next time.
10. People issues = Personal issues.
If people are someone’s most significant issue, they need better issues. Stoic people don’t blame others for the wrong things around them. They stay in such a way that other individuals can’t affect their thinking or emotions.
It would be best if you did not focus on what others do. Everyone is running their own race. 1% improvement every day. Focus on beating the person you were yesterday.
In a nutshell,
- Focus on what you can control.
- What feels good isn’t necessarily good for you.
- Anxiety is a choice.
- Be Determined.
- Statistics > Opinions.
- It is a privilege to endure pain and grow.
- Safety = Loss of Freedom. Take that leap.
- Nobody cares unless they show.
- Calm in chaos — Responsibility is the only way to manifest.
- If people are your most significant issues, you need better issues.