Live today, for tomorrow it will all be history.
I recently was sent a piece from the Positively Present folks that I really like and want to share with you today. I am not going to do a rambling introduction as it is fairly long and speaks for itself.
How to Make Your Life Uncommonly Good
EXAMINE + ENGAGE IN LIFE
The first rule of living a good life is knowing how important it is to explore the world and be curious about your environment. We instinctively do this as children, but it should be a lifelong practice. You can’t live if a good life if you’re not really living. To me, this means both examining and engaging in life outside yourself (by playing games, making art, trying new foods, etc.), and also examining and engaging in your inner world too.
TRY TO WORRY LESS
Worry is, unfortunately, a part of life, but how much you worry — and what you worry about — can impact how good your life is. It’s important to try your best to worry only about the things you can control. Learning how to quickly identify what you can control vs. what’s out of your hands is one of the best ways to minimize worries. Someone living a good life knows she can’t control everything; she can control her reactions to everything.
As humans, we crave connection and affection. Whether you’re the type of person that has countless friends or you prefer a few close pals, friendship — and the connections and life lessons that come along with those relationships — are invaluable. No amount of wealth, power, success, fame or any other measure of success can beat the positive benefits of a good friendship. Someone living a good life knows to treasure and care for his friendships.
FOCUS ON TRUE JOY
In life there are plenty of things that make us feel good, but not all of those things should be the focus. Living a good life means avoiding shallow, meaningless, or fleeting pleasures and instead focusing on meaningful, deep joys that have lasting effects. For instance, consider the feeling of eating a giant slice of cake vs. the feeling of having an inspiring conversation. Both feel good in the moment, but the long-term impacts are very different.
KNOW WHO YOU ARE
Personally, I think this should be number 1! To live a good life, it’s essential to know yourself, to be self-reliant, to cultivate self-love. Equally as important is focusing on what’s true, not what’s convenient. Self-deception is all too common for many of us, but it does us no good to convince ourselves of things that are untrue. If you struggle this this rule, here are some good resources to check out: My Life Story So Far, Letters to My Future Self, Finding Your Self, Loving Your Self.
FIND BALANCE + HARMONY
As you might already know, too much of anything (even the good stuff!) can be a bad thing, which is why, to live a good life, it’s important to avoid excess. In all areas of life — home, relationships, love, work, etc. — it’s a good idea to strive for balance. Overindulging in the good stuff can lead to what I think of as a “happiness hangover,” but depriving yourself of fun (and a little bit of bad behavior!) it’s great either. Find what balance means for you and strive for that.
ADHERE TO POSITIVE VALUES
This rule really comes down to one basic concept: be a decent human being. When you’ve done wrong, accept responsibility. Whenever possible, be honest with yourself and with others. It’s vital to be accountable for your choices and actions. What you value is up to you, but figuring out those values and sticking to them throughout your life is one of the best ways to ensure you’re living a good life. (Also: be open-minded and, if need be, change your values as you grow and learn.)
PROSPER WITH CAUTION
With any luck, you’ll have an wonderful opportunity to prosper in this life, to flourish financially and achieve great success. If this happens (and I hope it does!), be cautious and thoughtful in your choices. I imagine it’s difficult not to get carried away, but one of the keys to living a good life is being rational with your resources (whatever those might be!). Many prosperous people become foolish and delusional. Personally, I think this is a great place to focus on gratitude over gains.
DO HARM TO NO ONE
This might sound like an obvious rule for a good life, but it’s an important one. To live well, strive to harm no one — including yourself. Hurting others hurts you too (even if, for whatever reason, you feel as if they deserve to be hurt). Speak with kindness, focus on forgiveness, have compassion, embrace empathy, and, above all, try to cultivate as much love as you can for your fellow humans. (I also recommend extending this rule to animals and nature, too!)
BE ENDLESSLY KIND
The last rule goes hand-in-hand with the previous rule. Kindness is mandatory for living a good life. Not only does kindness make the world a better place, but every time you’re kind, you feel good. Also, regardless of whether or not you believe in karma, if you pay attention to how kindness plays out in your own life, you’ll find that your kind deeds are often rewarded or returned in some way. Whether it’s something small — like sharing your water with your dog on a long walk or sending a friend a bag of cheer — or something huge, being endlessly kind will always lead to a better, happier life.
If you do what you need, you’re surviving. If you do what you want, you’re living.
Jill and Nadine hadn’t seen each other in awhile, so they decided to meet for lunch. The talk naturally got around to their respective love lives. Jill confided that there really wasn’t anyone special in her life. Nadine, on the other hand, was beaming about the new man she had found.
“He’s perfect. He’s handsome, and last night when we went out to dinner, he said the four little words I’ve been waiting to hear a man say to me!”
“He said ‘will you marry me’?” Jill asked.
Nadine replied, “No, he said ‘put your money away’
Birthdays are good. The more you have, the longer you live.
A guy about to tee off was approached by a man who held out a card that read, “I am a deaf mute. May I please play through?”
The first man gave the card back, angrily shaking his head, and saying, “No, you CANNOT play through.” He assumed the guy read lips so he mouthed, “I can’t believe you would try to use your handicap to your own advantage like that! Shame on you!”
The deaf man walked away and the first man whacked the ball onto the green and then walked off to finish the hole. Just as he was about to put the ball into the hole he was hit in the head with a golf ball that knocked him out cold. When he came to a few minutes later, he looked around and saw the deaf mute sternly looking at him, one hand on his hip, the other hand holding up four fingers.
“The world is round, and the place which may seem like the end may also be only the beginning.”
A terrific explosion occurs in a gunpowder factory, and once all the mess has been cleared up, and inquiry begins. One of the few survivors is pulled up to make a statement. “Okay Simpson,” says the investigator, “you were near the scene – what happened ?”
“Well, it’s like this. Old Charley Higgins was in the mixing room, and I saw him take a cigarette out of his pocket and light up.”
“He was smoking in the mixing room ?” the investigator said in stunned horror, “How long had he been with the company?”
“About 20 years, sir”
“20 years in the company, then he goes and strikes a match in the mixing room, I’d have thought it would have been the last thing he’d have done.”
“It was, sir.”
Let life be an adventure. Live your life to the fullest, unfettered by fear of the ghosts and goblins of what might occur. Calamity and death happen as well to those who hide from life as to those who squeeze every drop of zest from it.
Jonathan Lockwood Huie
Stay well, do good work, and have fun.
Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies. The editor is somewhat senile.
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