Spotify recently released its 2019 Wrapped and it was fun to see what data the app had picked up about my listening habits. My artist of the decade was Taylor Swift. Obviously.
But it also made me think about the December 6th issue of the Daily Stoic newsletter, which asked to do “an interesting exercise”.
“Pull up a Spotify playlist for hits from the ’90s. Or turn on a satellite radio station built around that time.”
See how many of the songs you recognise. Then go further back. Depending on your age, at some point, there will be some hit songs of that era that you would have never heard of.
“It’s a reminder of how ephemeral we all are. How fleeting fame and life is,” goes the newsletter.
“On a long enough timeline, we are all blips” is the title of the newsletter. A reminder that everything we do and everything we are may seem important in the now, but wait long enough and we become nothing.
The Stoic lesson in this is that in the grand scheme of things, we are not as important as we think we are. So we must take care not to be overly proud.
And we must remember what our priorities are.
“If all fame is fleeting, if even the most accomplished and most influential—the writers of the biggest hits and the owners of the greatest songs of their time—are eventually forgotten, why chase it?”
Why let things affect us too much?