This short essay by Seneca, a Roman philosopher who lived during the 1st century, surprisingly has a lot of advice that remains applicable today. He main argument is that nature gives us plenty of time to chase our dreams and be great, and that men who whine that life is too short are those who squander it most.

It is not that we have a short space of time, but that we waste much of it. Life is long enough, and it has been given in sufficiently generous measure to allow the accomplishment of the very greatest things if the whole of it is well invested.


No one is to be found who is willing to distribute his money, yet among how many does each of us distribute his life!



Everyone hurries his life on and suffers from a yearning for the future and a weariness of the present. But he who bestows all of his time on his own needs who plans out every day as if it were his last, neither long for nor fears the morrow. For what new pleasure is there that any hour can now bring?

He states that you should continuously reflect, be amendable to changing the course of your ship, and not give attention to that which doesn’t benefit you. The essay was a quick read with a lot of fine quotes. You can download the PDF here.

“It’s not that we have a short time to live, but that we waste a lot of it.”

Read More: “Shortness Of Life” on Amazon

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