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Top 9 Lessons for Life

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  • Top 9 Lessons for Life

    “What you do not want done to yourself, do not do to others.”

    The Law of Reciprocity is strong in people. How you treat others, they are likely to treat you. So be honest and think about what you do to others and what they are doing to you. And think about how you can change and improve what you do to them.

    The payoff may not be instant though. So delay your need for gratification and act in a way that you feel is right rather than quickly giving up doing positive things just because you didn’t get validation and positive feedback right away.

    “I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand.”

    This is a key piece of advice. It’s easy to confuse what you read in a book or see happen to someone else as having an idea of how it is to do or experience such a thing for yourself. Sometimes it gives you a good idea of what it is about. Other times it’s quite different than you thought it would be.

    So while books and seeing someone doing something can be useful to learn, the key to really understanding what something is about is to do it for yourself. You can argue with yourself or others about an idea for years. Have logical discussions and theories. But until you actually try it for yourself you won’t understand it.

    “If you shoot for the stars and hit the moon, it’s OK. But you’ve got to shoot for something. A lot of people don’t even shoot.”

    The most important thing is to start and to try. You may fail, you may stumble. And that’s OK. You may not wind up exactly where you wanted to go. And that’s OK too. But if you never try nothing will ever get started. You can just spend days, months and years sitting around waiting for something to happen.

    “The more man meditates upon good thoughts, the better will be his world and the world at large.”

    What you focus on, you will see in your world. Changing what you think about most of the time can change the world around you radically. Things you never noticed before comes into focus. Things you previously spent a lot of time thinking and worrying about seem insignificant and sink into the background of your world.

    And your actions tend to align with your dominant thoughts. So if you replace negative thoughts with positive thoughts then you will probably start to take more positive actions in your world – and more action in general since fear lessens within your mind – and so you world tends to become a better world. This can of course spread outside your own little world since people tend to treat other people as they are being treated. And so a positive, upward spiral of thought and action can grow.

    “To be wronged is nothing unless you continue to remember it.”

    “Things that are done, it is needless to speak about…things that are past, it is needless to blame.”

    People can hold on to things that once happened long, long after they happened. It inflates the ego that tells you that “you must be a person of importance since people did these horrible things to you!”.

    So you feel a sense of importance by bringing these past things up in your mind and perhaps by discussing or arguing with others about them. This may be seen as normal and something a whole lot of people do. But it is not useful. It is not necessary. So ask yourself: “what is in it for me?”

    Is it really a lot of value in it for you to be thinking and feeling negatively for perhaps hours each week and days each year about things that is already in the past, things you can’t change anyway?

    Now, just saying that you should drop negative stuff that happened to you in the past is easy. Doing it isn’t always that easy. These memories have a tendency to want to cling to you. Or jump out at you once again even though you thought you had moved past them. I suggest checking out products by Eckhart Tolle – books like The Power of Now and A New Earth and dvds like The Flowering of Conciousness – to learn more practical methods for handling the past, your mind and your ego.

    “And remember, no matter where you go, there you are.”

    It’s easy to get lost in the past or future. But you aren’t there now. You are right here right now. And that’s how it can be - if you allow it - pretty much all the time. Most of the moments you spend thinking and feeling about the past or future is simply you being stuck in an unnecessary habit and distraction from what is here now in front of you.

    “Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.”

    The mind loves to think. So it thinks and thinks about things. Making them more and more complex than they ever really were. And so you bog yourself down with too many thoughts and perhaps a lack of action due to things just seeming too complicated and hard. Don’t get lost in details and unimportant things. Realize what is most important, discard what you don’t need. Spend more time on the important things in your life. And stop thinking so much (again, Tolle is a useful help for such compulsiveness).

    “When anger rises, think of the consequences.”

    Here is one time when it’s good to look into the future. It is easy to get lost in the anger and act from that. But is it worth it and what may happen if you do? When anger rises, take 10 breaths and think about it.

    “When we see persons of worth, we should think of equaling them; when we see persons of a contrary character, we should turn inwards and examine ourselves.”

    I haven’t really thought about things like this before, especially how you can turn inward and examine yourself when you met a person of contrary character. So don’t I have much to add, except that it sounds like an useful thing to do as you met people throughout your life. So I will try it out.

    Read not to contradict and confute, not to believe and take for granted, not to find talk and discourse, but to weigh and consider. Inhale positive, exhale negative