Marcus Aurelius wrote in his book, Meditations, about how he motivated himself to get out of bed every day. Even Roman Emperors had his fair share of Monday mornings.

He’d go to bed after a long day of meetings with his advisors, riding around the city and greeting his subjects, making plans for the future of Rome. You know, just another day in the life of an emperor.

He would barely sleep soundly. It would feel like he had only closed his eyes for five seconds before the sun rose and the next day began. The sunlight would strike his tired eyes and he’d groan in his bed, covering himself with his silk blanket, trying to hide from the exposing sunlight.

A knock at the door. His advisor would peek into the room and tell him he was needed.

“Just five more minutes, Alfred.” He’d say from under his sheets.

Besides, he was emperor. He didn’t REALLY have to get up. He could order in breakfast from his bed and lay there all day, watching the latest play by his servants while they fed him grapes and wine. He could delegate all his tasks to his advisors and if they did them poorly, he could always hire another one. What’s the point of being emperor if he can’t even have a little bit of fun and relaxation?

He’d call Alfred back in and tell him to cancel all his appointments. He told him to take care of everything and if something went wrong, he’d be responsible for them all. He also told Alfred to set up a gladiator cage by his bedside, which was the Netflix equivalent of the 2nd century. Nothing made him happier than watching two soldiers fighting to their deaths from his bed.

Alfred had no other choice. “It shall be done.” He rushed out of the room to delegate orders as fast as he could. Marcus drew the curtains and prepared to go back to sleep. He sighed in relief, knowing that the day was over before it started and now he could look forward to the day instead of dreading it. He could get used to this kind of life. It wasn’t so bad being emperor after all.

Watch the video to know more.
💡This was initially published as an article on by William Cho:

1) “Meditations” by Marcus Aurelius:
2) “Discourses and Selected Writings” by Epictetus:
3) “On the Shortness of Life” by Seneca:
4) “Letters from a Stoic” by Seneca:
5) “What is Ancient Philosophy?” by Pierre Hadot:
6) “The Inner Citadel” by Pierre Hadot:
7) “Philosophy as a Way of Life” by Pierre Hadot:
8) “Ego is The Enemy” by Ryan Holiday:
9) “The Obstacle is The Way:” by Ryan Holiday:
10) “Daily Stoic” by Ryan Holiday:

Stoic Indifference:
Stoic Morning Routine:
3 Stoic Rules:
9 Stoic Rules of Life:
Learn Stoicism from Marcus:
Book Review of Meditation:
9 Stoic lessons of Marcus Aurelius:
Epictetus & Discourses:
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