5 Questions I live by
As mentioned in my first post, I may not have many answers but I do have the curiosity to always be asking questions. No, not who-what-when-where-why, although those are important questions (sorry how.) But I find these questions important to review every 6–12 months to guide my decisions on where to spend my time. I’m looking forward to a future where have added quotes and certainties to live by but for now these have done me well:
Am I learning?
I’m a believer in lifelong learning and look at everyone as students of life. It’s a shame that I’ve hear people who say they’ve read all the books they needed in college. Everyone has heroes and role models they are inspired by or hobbies they have always wanted to pick up. Now is the time — there is so much knowledge at our fingertips in these little glowing screens.
If you need a little inspiration, watch this amazing web series — Webucation by Fusion:
Get started on your journey with these lists of links:
- 37 Best Websites to Learn Something New
- The No-Excuse List
- Last but not least, Fucking Homepage
(some dead links but come on, live a little)
Are I creating?
So much of life is obligatory consumption — everyone has to eat, everyone has to sleep, and time, our most valuable resource, is always ticking. But a lot of this consumption is also optional. The average American eats 3700+ calories a day and watches 5 hours of television. Although food and television aren’t inherently bad, it’s obvious how easy it is to fall into idleness.
One of the main motivations of starting this daily blog was because I felt the dread of being an idle consumer. Even though I feel I’m learning every day, I couldn’t see tangible results from my efforts. While I have nearly no audience in the grand scheme of things, just having friends and family able to see what I’m working and thinking on, replying with their own thoughts means so much to me. If I’m able to touch others as well, all the better.
Giving has also proven itself to be a great indicator for happiness and success. It’s ironic that those who think of themselves first end up in a vicious cycle of always thinking everything is zero-sum.
Can I challenge myself more? (without permanent damage)
Just learning and creating isn’t enough, it’s important to get out of your comfort zone and push the boundaries of what you think is possible. Obvious advice but perhaps this research by Dr Jessica Witt can drive it home: a perceiver’s own abilities influence perception. For example, people who weigh more see distances as farther and hills as steeper.
This means we are inherently bad judges of how difficult a challenge is, especially when we are inexperienced or have had difficulties in the past. I’ve also talked about Grit in a previous post and why it’s important to cultivate.
Are you surrounding yourself with people that you care about? (And do the people around you care about you?)
“You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.”
― Jim Rohn
I find that the people I surround myself with are so important that it warrants two questions. In the end, these are the people you bounce your ideas off of and share values with. Furthermore, they are the ones you may put their well being over yours and you’ll want to make sure that they are the type to do the same.
Hopefully you feel overall positive with your answers and if not perhaps they help you make adjustments. These answers have helped place me in environments and circumstances to live well. Do you have questions you live by? Leave a comment or message me on Twitter if you’ve got your own thoughts or think I’ve missed something.