S:1304 Principle: Own

(Principles are basic truths that, when applied, cause success to come to you easier and quicker.)


What do you own? Things and stuff? Land and real estate? Freedom? Ideas and creativity? Yes to all of those. And no.

Epictetus, a slave in Rome, later freed, later still banished to Greece, was a philosopher who said the only things he truly owned were his will and his purpose. His will and his purpose. All else was opinion, ephemeral, lacking.

Think of the things you simply had to have in order to be happy when you were a child. How many of those are important now? Visit with elderly folks and you’ll hear the same sentiments about things they ‘owned’ along the way. Most have faded in importance to them.

What if Epictetus was correct? Do you know your purpose? Without the clarity purpose provides as a life compass how can one meaningfully navigate? Said perhaps more crudely – why are you on the planet taking up space?

Knowing one’s purpose then provides a framework for applying one’s will. Will is the engine powering the journey and purpose provides direction for the will. Without purpose outcomes are random and the will is less engaged, thus weaker.

Will and purpose need and feed each other. All else, said Epictetus, is add-on, accessory, transitory.


Coaching Point: Do you know your purpose? How willing are you?


Copyright 2020 Steve Straus. All rights reserved.