Things I Know To Be True

  1. It is truly a challenge to create something worthwhile that takes sacrifice, and hard to give up something that is easy and addictive. Regularly exercising your willpower and strengthening this spiritual muscle holds up the backbone of your success.
  2. Thinking further ahead, imagining different scenarios and rethinking a variety of consequences will change the way you perceive the problem, approach the analysis and apply the solution. Bear in mind the human penchant for hyperbolic discounting. Importantly, always bring your thoughts one step further. In a line of thinking, ask as many times as you could, “And therefore?” as well as “So what would happen next?”
  3. There is no purpose to living a lie. The only person you are deceiving is yourself. Stop caring about what other people think of you. Choose to be unique and imperfect. Just. Be. You. Ask, “What is the worst thing that could happen?” and still decide to live courageously despite the answer – or because of it.
  4. Having a passion and being passionate will define who you are more than you think, especially as you grow older. Passionless people rent the space in which they exist. Passionate people create life in the places they roam. Only one life. Think about it.
  5. This too shall pass. ‘Sitzfleisch’ means ‘the power to endure or persevere in an activity’. Also means ‘buttocks’. Learn to breathe deeply and meditate while sitting it out. Utilise the time to form a plan. As my father oft repeated, “if you fail to plan, you plan to fail”.
  6. Be flexible, in body and in mind. Yoga and Pilates twenty minutes a day will (hopefully) have your seventy year old thanking you. An open mind and a refusal to chain yourself to just one perspective will increase the depth of your thoughts and widen the field of your perceptions.
  7. Oral hygiene is very important. So are grins and smiles. So are kisses. Keeping a good oral hygiene prepares you for stolen kisses and unbidden grins. Stochastic surprises are what make life worth living.
  8. Kindness matters. Stay away from ruthless, unkind and inconsiderate people lest you become like them. Kindness is having a moment for someone when you’re in a rush. Kindness is softening your voice when the other person is shouting. Most charitable kindness is in paying attention.
  9. True friends never abandon one another. And forgive you for not calling so often. They are those who make you feel most comfortable when opening up about your vulnerabilities and cheer the most when you are boasting about your achievements. Loyalty is the most precious gift you can receive from a person.
  10. People will choose what they want anyway, and justify afterwards. Love, hatred, fear and desire will normally guide their choices. If something matters enough to them, people will move mountains to achieve it. Alternatively, you can bring a horse to the water but not make it drink if it’s not thirsty. Know what a person want and fear the most, and you have the insight to a person’s personality and motivation.
  11. When you think you know all there is to know about a person, a thing or a subject, look again. You will find something new you never knew before. Sometimes it’s through employing a magnifying glass and sometimes, from stepping back and taking in the bigger picture. Curiosity might kill the cat but for the humans, enliven the mind and spirit.
  12. Try and answer the difficult questions now and then. Or question the obvious answers. Either way, it might help to ward off the stagnation of your mind or your life. There will however, be questions that will bear no answers or do so by revealing uncomfortable truths. These are the ones most difficult to confront.
  13. Incorporate beauty into your life. This too, matters. Whether it’s arranging the food on the plate to make it more appetising or hanging an interesting painting in your study. The beauty in the mosaic of life lies in the little things you do for yourself and the ones you love, the tiny details you pay attention to in your work and craft and the nano insights you gain from the everyday interactions you have with the universe.

 

 

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