All Things In Vigour

Everything in Moderation

Everything in Moderation (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

How many times have we heard “All things in moderation” and thought that it is a philosophy we should acquire? Perhaps we have been sold a bill of goods. Moderation is not particularly colourful—within its barriers are the words restraint, control, reasonableness, temperance, balance, and fairness ~ and while none of these things are bad in themselves, they have a blandness about them—and hold us back.

Not that at times we should not be held back and show a little restraint, temper a situation, reach for fairness~ but where is the passion, the robustness, the joy? There seems to be little joy in moderation— illustrated quite vividly in one of its meanings from the Encarta Dictionary: “the limiting, controlling, or restricting of something so that it becomes or remains moderate.”

We cannot always be fiery and passionate, but I think that I would like to change the saying “All things in moderation” to “All things in vigour”. We should not grasp at mediocrity, settle for compromise; there is one life and one life only and we should hold on to it with all our strength.

Approaching life with verve and drive will force moderation back into the shadows where it should be taken out on occasion, looked at, considered, then cast off. I was inspired to write about moderation by Dr Bill who had the following quote on his blog today. I separated each sentence of the quote to make it more important, to give it more punch:


It’s mediocrity, fear, and confusion in disguise.

It’s the devil’s dilemma.

It’s neither doing nor not doing.

It’s the wobbling compromise that makes no one happy.

Moderation is for the bland, the apologetic, for the fence-sitters of the world afraid to take a stand.

It’s for those afraid to laugh or cry, for those afraid to live or die.

Moderation…is lukewarm tea, the devil’s own brew.”

     ~  Dan Millman from Way of the Peaceful Warrior


There is a time and a place for moderation I suppose, but not in my life. I appear to be moderate but it is merely a guise. What about you?

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35 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Interesting perspective….you’ve given me a lot to think about.

  2. No surprise, but I too was moved by Bill’s post this morning..and continue to be intrigued..

    • a different way of looking at something we have come to accept as true

      • Yup…’everything is ok in moderation’ is stood on it’s mediocre head.

      • it is funny you should say that, the cover of the book quoted from has the author on his head

      • Really? Sometimes I can be prescient, I guess. 😉

      • good word, prescient – am adding that to my new favourite words

      • 🙂

  3. Moderation is rather a boring and limiting word now that I think about it :). When eating I hear the word moderation, and then I just say whatever and eat more chocolate. While at the book store yesterday, the word moderation reared its ugly head, so I ignored it and bought more books to add to my teetering “to be read” pile. There are some things that you can just never have too much of :).

  4. I like your ideas on this. Not all of those old quotes are keepers.

    • I suppose a post could be written in support of moderation–but the quote really made me think that sometimes we are satisfied with the status quo when we shouldn’t be!

      • Moderation has its place, perhaps in things that aren’t good for us in the first place. But living your life should be done with vigor/vigour! Carpe Diem!

      • I shall seize it!

  5. Something to think about.. I’ve always considered myself a moderate person with occasional shifts into something more vigorous. I think moderate is a comfortable place to be. Maybe that’s a problem for me.

    • we have been convinced that moderate is the way to go–and sometimes it is good to listen to Robert Allen who said: “Everything that you want is just outside of your comfort zone.”

      • I guess that’s where my husband spurs me on – he is the extrovert that pushes my introverted self into doing more, entertaining more, and living more outside of my comfort zone.

      • that is a good thing–I am most definitely an introvert so many things are outside my comfort zone, but I try to break out

  6. I can see ‘moderation’ in perhaps recovering from an illness or condition… but maybe we are conditioned to accept moderation as the way to live… not to strive for more… something to think about..Diane

  7. I guess it depends on what you want to “moderate.” I try to live my life with passion and gusto but sometimes I’m just not in the mood! ha! I think as long as we keep testing ourselves, taking risks and not let getting older get in the way, then we’re doing okay. Maybe some of the moderation we do is more for others than for ourselves. After all, we do, as you say have to practice restraint, eh Lou? ;).

    Good morning!!

    • I think restraint generally comes naturally for me and I have to step out of that box into the lovely circle of life!

      Sometimes we do need a rest from passion and gusto, admittedly

  8. Moderation, pas moi! PASSION!

  9. I’m not sure I agree with this take on “moderation,” LouAnn. I prefer to define moderation as presiding over choices, therefore, making my choices mindfully, thoughtfully, with moderation. In my view, moderation and passion are not mutually exclusive, and it is my choice as to which I choose to give reign. Moderation is not at all a relinquishing of power but, rather, a measured and considered exercise of power. So, I live vigorously – with moderation! xoxoM

  10. Very thought provoking! I’m not ready to completely throw out the idea of moderation. For example, I think it wise to drink wine and eat chocolate bars in moderation but I love your concept of living life with vigour! I definitely believe in living life to the fullest; stepping way outside my comfort zone and living each moment with passion!

    • an argument can be made for moderation there is no doubt, but it is touted sometimes as the be all and end all, when it is not in all cases

  11. Mmmm I’m not lukewarm tea but steaming hot strong black but oh so sweet coffee. Hence why I’m damn tired.

  12. I think it all depends on how we each view moderation. As I hear it most often in the context of food, that’s usually where I apply it (often as justification for eating ice cream when I know I could substitute something else). I think most of the time, because I think things through carefully, I appear moderate but once I decide on something, I go all out. Maybe you know something of this yourself? 😉

  13. Thank you for the interesting thought 🙂

    Choc Chip Uru

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