Stoic Sunday | 1.8.23 | Burn the Boats
"Burn the boats" is a metaphor that is used to describe a situation in which someone is completely committed to achieving a goal or achieving a certain outcome, and is not willing to consider any alternative options or possibilities. The metaphor comes from the idea of a military commander who, upon landing on enemy shores with his troops, would burn the boats that brought them there in order to signal to his soldiers that there was no turning back, and that they must fight to the death in order to win the battle.
The phrase "burn the boats" is often used to encourage people to pursue their goals with single-minded focus and determination, and to not let any doubts or distractions hold them back. It is a way of saying that you should be fully committed to achieving your goals, and be willing to do whatever it takes to get there.
Achieving a goal is one of the most bliss experiences when achieved through discipline and perseverance. This metaphor, Burn the Boats, preaches about a mindset. One way we’ve seen this implemented is through Affirmations such as “I will Burn the Boats”. Our Founder, Brenden Meyer, has identified that his “Burn the Boats” moment came from a self-realization phase, which he is confident will lead him to a healthy and desirable lifestyle.
The idea of "burning the boats" is a good example of this philosophy in action, as it involves making a decision to pursue a goal or objective, and then fully committing to it, regardless of any potential obstacles or setbacks that may arise. This aligns with the Stoic belief in the importance of living in the present moment, and not getting bogged down by worries about the future or regrets about the past. By "burning the boats" and fully committing to a course of action, one is able to focus all of their energy and attention on achieving their goal, rather than getting distracted by other possibilities or alternative options.
At Cornucopia, we often discuss the mindset and philosophies of many timeless figures of the past, yet the “Burn the Boats” mindset is our rendition of the present.