Every day I am trying to apply different elements of stoicism to my daily life. I will briefly describe two of the philosophy’s principles I am trying to use on a daily basis.
Firstly there is Negative Visualization, which is the simple concept of imagining a worse scenario than the one currently being played out. This works in such a way that you appreciate what is going on around you, because there is always worse. In my case, London commuter, I can use negative visualization while traveling by tube to appreciate how lucky I am that I don’t have to suffer the heat of a desert for example or that actually I am lucky enough to have a means of getting to work at all. I practice this thought process several times a day and realize that I should make the best of what I have.
This brings me to the second principle, the trichotomy. This principle reminds me to accept what I can and can’t affect, and use logic to understand that there are certain elements of daily life over which I have no control. The behavior of people around you is something over which you have no real power to affect, whilst you own goals are something that you can change. Hence you should concentrate on these things that you can change; goals, but also more generally speaking your mentality and thoughts. The third part of the trichotomy is the realm of things that you have partial power to change, a grey area.
This isn’t an easy process as both principles call for mindfulness/concentration and capacity for logical thought.