Tag Archives: will-power

Socrates and the palm reader

Socrates once visited a palm reader. The palm reader looked at his hands and said to him: “so many undivine qualities you have: anger, pride, lust…”. His followers were furious — how could she say this about the great saint, Socrates?

Socrates replied, “Wait, let us see whether she has anything else to say.” The palm reader continued, “Yes, he has these qualities, but, he also has them under his complete control.” Like all people, Socrates had negative emotions and qualities but he was able to prevent them from controlling him.

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Burn the boats

When ancient Greek armies traveled across the sea to do battle, the first thing they would do after landing was to burn the boats, leaving them stranded. With no way to make it home besides victory, the resolve of the soldiers was strengthened. When success and failure are the only options, you have no choice but to follow through.