Here’s one of my favourite Marcus Aurelius quotes that will help you to reach your goals in life.
I'm coming to you from the Colosseum in Rome. It was built in 80 A.D. and is one of the seven wonders of the world.
It’s pretty impressive considering it was able to accommodate 60,000 spectators for so many different events - the most famous event of course being the gladiator battles.
We're here today because I wanted to share with you one of Marcus Aurelius’ quotes on reaching your goals.
Marcus Aurelius is considered as one of the so-called “Five Good Emperors” because unlike the other Roman emperors that ruled with a dictatorial, power-hungry rule, Marcus Aurelius ruled based on virtue.
So it's no coincidence that the Five Good Emperors were actually chosen and elected to the throne rather than inheriting it.
You may know Marcus Aurelius from the movie Gladiator. He played the good emperor.
As a side note, there were two kinds of falsehoods that Hollywood made up about that movie. Number one, Marcus Aurelius didn't actually die at the hands of his son, who was played by Joaquin Phoenix in the movie. He actually died in battle.
And number two, the gladiator Maximus (played by Russell Crowe) was actually a fictitious character. It was a combination of different people, including Spartacus, the leader of the slave revolt.
A Lifechanging Perspective On How To Reach Your Goals
Anyway, the quote that I want to share with you today comes from a Marcus Aurelius book called, "Meditations".
Now “Meditations” is not a kind of Marcus Aurelius meditation where his like a Buddhist Monk trying to achieve enlightenment or something.
The meditations Marcus Aurelius wrote about were the kind when you're just silent and with your own thoughts, and you're trying to think about life and your direction.
This is something really rare in history. Here we have a Roman emperor, the last of the Five Good Emperors, who wrote a series of twelve meditation books called Meditations just for himself.
He never wanted this to be a bestseller, or get published or anything. He just wrote these words for himself, and because of the Marcus Aurelius meditation books, we are able to get an insight into his thinking.
Here is the quote.
"If a thing is humanly possible, consider it within your reach."
What a cracker of a quote! It means that too often, when you think about how to reach your goals in life, we think, "I want to learn how to play a musical instrument, but I'm not musical."
Or, "I want to learn how to sell, but I'm not a salesperson. I don't have the gift of the gab."
Or, "I want to run really fast, but I wasn't born with that gift. I'm not talented, so I won't do it."
What he's saying is that's complete rubbish!
Instead of focusing on all the differences - that you're too young, you’re too old, you don’t have enough experience, you have too much experience - focus on the one glaring fact that's right in front of you. You're a human being.
And like other human beings on this planet, you breathe the same air, you have a brain and you have a heart.
Human beings are capable of so many beautiful things and can achieve so many goals, just like this amazing Colosseum.
And I think if we can put a man on the moon, then you can reach the goal that you're wanting to do, whatever it may be.
The second really important thing to realise about this quote is that it's not the whole quote. The actual full quote goes like this.
"Just because something is hard to master, do not think it is humanly impossible, but, if a thing is humanly possible, consider it within your reach."
Now, why is that important? Since it shows that he wrote this quote just for himself, and Marcus Aurelius, the great Roman emperor, is still saying he found things hard to master, but he kept persevering. He didn't consider them out of his reach because other humans have achieved them.
For me, this is one of the best Marcus Aurelius quotes because it has really helped me a lot in my life. When I didn't believe in myself, or didn't believe it was possible, or could be done, I just thought to myself, if a thing is humanly possible, if someone else has done it, I can do it too! Why? Because I'm human.
Forget all the other stuff about being too young, too old, too short, too fat, whatever it is... because you're a human being as well. Go for it!
So let me know if you like this video and I'd love to hear your comments about what goal you thought was too hard, but now is possible for you as well.
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