๐Ÿ“™ What's your sans souci palace?

Daily Self-Discipline: Weekly Newsletter

๐Ÿ“™ What's your sans souci palace?


I decided to shorten the weekly newsletter.

Instead of 3 topics taking over 5 minutes to read, each newsletter will take no more than 2 minutes to read. It will cover only one idea to help you with self-discipline.

Today we'll take some inspiration from a Prussian king.

What? Read on...

What's your sans souci?

In 1745, Prussian King Frederick the Great ordered the construction of his summer palace in Potsdam, near Berlin (the image above is a loose AI interpretation of the building).

With its extensive views of the countryside, Frederick wanted to reside there sans souci, "without a care" in French, hence the name of the palace (Sanssouci).

Each year, Frederick spent time in the palace between the end of April and October to escape the pomp and ceremony of the royal court. It was his place to recharge and follow his personal and artistic interests.

The palace, or rather its name, made me think of a frequently ignored, yet crucial aspect of cultivating consistent self-discipline.

Namely, consistent self-discipline isn't about constantly pushing yourself to the limit without any rest. Instead, it's about a constant balancing act: contracting and relaxing.

And that second part, while often overlooked, is crucial to consistency.

For example, speaking of contracting and relaxing, you can't build muscle by training 24/7. The period of recovery isn't a "nice-to-have." It's a must-do for muscle growth. At some point, the more you train, the worse off you'll be.

If we assume that an average gym-goer trains three hours a week, they spend 98% of time on recovery. And over months and years, they still get impressive results!

Of course, this isn't practical for other aspects of our lives (though how cool would it be to work three hours a week and see your net worth continuously grow?)

But the principle behind it is still valid. If we contract (work hard), we also need to relax (to recharge and prepare for another cycle). One can't exist without the other.

Just like Frederick the Great needed to retreat to his palace to escape the burdens of his position, so we need to escape to our own palaces (mentally or physically) if we want to consistently grow.

Some questions to ask yourself:

  • How often do you spend time sans souci, without a care? Is there proper balance between contraction and relaxation?
  • How often do you tend to put off your sans souci time until you're burned out, having sabotaged your goals?
  • Is there any physical place where you recover best? Is it a local library, park, forest, mountain, beach, lake, or your own backyard?
  • Is there any mental place, habit, or activity that helps you recover? How can you temporarily teleport yourself to your sans souci palace in moments that test your patience?

With appreciation,


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Daily Self-Discipline - 21,000 Happy Subscribers

I'm sharing unique perspectives on how to build more self-discipline and achieve your goals. My primary focus is on sustainable, consistent methods that let you improve your life while also enjoying it. I don't believe in constantly pushing yourself to the limits and struggling for the sake of struggling. I'm an entrepreneur, writer, digital nomad, freediver, surfer, and language learning enthusiast.

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