3 Simple principles to live by

In this post you’ll find 3 simple and yet powerful principles to live by.

We think of principles as the kind of thing only our ancestors would even bother designing , let alone implementing to their lives or living by. So we live unstructured lives, guided by decision making strategies that change from time to time, and that are often prone to inconsistencies within themselves, and our inner beings. Each time a compelling argument is made in favour of a certain decision, or decision making strategy we are urged to adopt it without paying attention to how this could influence our lives and happiness in the long run. So, the idea in this post is not so much to impose any one principle or another upon you, but to serve as a starting point from which you can build your own set of principles that better suits your life and goals. In the end of the day, only you can better customize the set of ideas and principles that better enable you to live the kind of life you want to live.

3 Simple principles to base your life on

1.Growth over time no matter how small

The first is to always seek for self-improvement in all areas of life. This means creating the habit of making sure  that when you look back at the past, regardless of how far gone, you can with pride say that you’re better than that older version of you. One standard within this standard to live by is to make that time gap in which you can be proud of yourself as short as possible. Meaning that you’ve been working on your own self-improvement and self-growth so much that you don’t have to wait a decade, a year, or even a week, before you can look at yourself in the mirror and say that “yes” I’m better than I was in this past version of me without breaking eye contact. One place to aspire to be at is one in which you can honestly make that affirmation every single day, meaning that everyday you’re better than yesterday, regardless of whether by better we mean 1% or 100% better. But the improvement must be significant enough that you can tell someone about it, not being to the same level of the  “I learn a lesson everyday” kind of saying most people do these days. What they say is true, but so is the fact that you learn a lesson every second you spend awake. The fact that you do learn a lesson doesn’t mean that lesson adds much value to your life. It’s like taking car fixing lessons when what you really want is to become a renowned poet. You can argue that the first could be somewhat valuable to the latter, but you will have to spend some time looking for even the most remote of the connections.

The reason why this is so powerful goes well beyond the idea that through self-improvement you have greater chances of finding a great job. Being the same version of ourselves, especially when that version is one we’re not proud of is often at the root of the so common, and yet not so widely spoken about feeling of worthlessness. Through continuous self-improvement you don’t have lie to yourself in the mirror trying to convince the nagging inner you that you love you the way you are. The fact that we’re truly getting better over time, is the kind of thing that makes us genuinely like ourselves not just because we are ourselves.

2. Earning as opposed to wishing

We hear about countless stories of people who’ve been blessed in a major way, be that they have been gifted with some ability, or to meet some key person who made it possible for them rise to the higher levels of success and fame we all wish we could have in our lives. So early on we create the habit of trying to wish our way into getting the things we want, and when the universe doesn’t give it, the default reaction is to assume we’re not a part of that select group of few who always gets what they want. The thing about wishing is that just like the lotto we have to rely on luck, and the problem with relying on luck is that we’re not the only ones doing it. The reason why we’re not the only ones doing it is that just like doing nothing, this is the easiest thing to do. To stay there and wish requires nothing more than just saying the words out loud, and if we’re really feeling lazy that day, mentally professing the words also does it.

So, the idea here is to change the model. Instead of working on a wishing system, to work on an earning system. The equivalent to this in the job market is being paid by commission as opposed to by an hourly rate: you only keep what you really make. This model is both freeing, and somewhat scary. It’s freeing because you have your fate in your hands. It’s like having the pen and the paper, and with the pen and the paper we’re also responsible for the story we write down to the paragraph. This can be scary of course, since with all these years of putting our failures in some entity that cannot speak for itself, this is not only easy but also lifts any responsibility from our shoulders.

The thing about this approach to life is that it tends to be more productive, and more rewarding in the long haul. The reason for this is that we can earn what we want if we put our brains to it, and as unbelievable as it might seem, our brains are one of the finest problem solving machines out there. The biggest impediment is not in the inner workings of the machine itself, but in our lack of confidence with regards to its ability to properly do the job it has evolved to do, since at the end of the day, why would anyone need a brain if one has no problems to solve? Wouldn’t it less energy expensive to just removing it altogether?

This is a principle within a principle and to put it in clearer words is goes as follows: your brain can solve any problem given any time and raw materials. The raw materials here would come in the form of ideas, and problem solving strategies, and the time in the form of patience and persistence.

3.The principle of universal reciprocity

We’ve all heard about the idea that what we put out there tends to be that what we get back, and sometimes many times over. Some believe that this Is due to some strong universal force or power that exists just for the sole purpose of ensuring fairness to the world we live in. Some of us don’t believe in this version of nature and the universe, and make the grave mistake of downplaying the weight/impact of their actions. The truth is that what goes around really comes around, if not by the universe then by the human race, because either we agree with it or not, everybody lives by this simple social algorithm: please and support those who please and support us, and hurt and complicate the lives of those who hurt and complicate our lives. It’s also true that once in a while there are the outliers who hurt the ones who do them good, and the ones who give the other cheek when someone slaps them, but to bet your existence in almost lottery like events is a more than certain losing strategy, since even if you do manage to win once in this game of life, each passed hour you live almost ensures your losses.  It’s like playing a twisted kind of lottery where when you lose you lose the same amount you’d have won. If you were victorious, and you are forced to keep playing regardless of whether you win or lose.

So, regardless of what you believe in the way is the same: give to the world the kinds of things you expect to get from it. This is in part what goes behind this new idea in the business circles of trying to help the customer as opposed to looking for ways to make more money from it. The desired end result is the same, but the attitude and results vary wildly.

Summary

As we discussed above these should serve as mere templates or bricks you can use to build your own and more personalized principles. The most tempting thing to do is to follow someone else’s ideas of what you should do with your life, or the best way to live it. In the end you’re the person who knows you better than anyone, so take the time to build your own set of principles and ideas .

It is all about knowledge and experience 😉

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2 thoughts on “3 Simple principles to live by

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