Living The Good Life — 15 Principles For High Achievement And Happiness
Imagine being in the underground/tube/metro of one of the world’s metropolises in which you haven’t been before — in the midst of the morning rush.
Every single place is packed with people, anxious to move forward, to board and get off the trains.
Imagine all the escalators, crossing long corridors, ambiguous signboards and announcements, ubiquitous ads, all the noise from people and trains.
Image that you don’t really know where you need to go.
So — you just adjust to the masses, get pushed around here and there. You see some signs on the way, and along with the crowd you board some trains whose tags you barely see. It’s difficult and stressful to be there even if you knew where to go.
Eventually you notice you’ve ended up in some weird place with a lot less people. You don’t like the way it looks.
Well, guess what — since you didn’t have a destination to start with, this is exactly where you’re supposed to be!
If you never think about where you want to go and just follow the masses, you can find yourself just about anywhere.
As the saying goes:
If you don’t know where you are going, any direction is good!
Plus — you get pushed around a lot along the way.
This applies life itself. They say lots of people have regrets on their death beds. More often than not, the regrets seem to be related to making decisions — or more precisely, the lack thereof.
Many claim they have lived someone else’s life, while realizing only very late they would’ve wanted to do something different.
Instead they have conformed to outside pressure and norms.
There are countless examples of people who are unhappy with their life and mentally and socially unstable, even if they seemingly “have it all” and are living the good life. We also have coined a specific term called “midlife crisis.”
A lot of the evil in the world as well happens when good people just follow the herd. Don’t be one of them.
The thing is, most of us just don’t bother to think about what it is that they want from life, what are their goals, and most importantly: how they want to live — what are their values.
The feeling of drifting around and not being in control of your life is caused by not having really thought about what’s important to you personally and what living the good life means to you.
Then, things go really bad when the “outside world” (or any external power you’re blaming) is “forcing” you to do something that deep inside doesn’t feel right. Enter bitterness.
If you want to enjoy life and achieve what you want, then you better put in some effort and remind yourself every day about your principles for good life.
That is, everyone should have a certain set of goals to aim for and rules to live by. Think of it as a code of conduct for yourself.
Similar to the imagined subway, you simply can’t stay focused and keep moving into the desired direction in everyday life unless you have a clear idea of where you are going, and your own values and principles.
The good thing is, even if you aren’t so clear about your life goals or are in process of re-evaluating them, it helps tremendously if you at least have thought about your own values and principles of good life. (In fact, they may be the only thing you need.)
Also, knowing what you don’t want is very powerful.
“If nothing else, I certainly don’t want to board *that* train, or walk into *that* corridor.”
When you know your values, or what you don’t want, you can make sure you are working to achieve the things that matter to you most.
Otherwise you’re easily taken captive by other people’s agendas and values, and you might eventually find yourself in a place you don’t like (or worse).
Below, I’m sharing a list of principles I’ve jotted down for myself. (I don’t pretend I’m perfectly following all of them — but have collected the list to try to do better.)
15 Principles for Living The Good Life:
- Sleep enough. Make this your #1 priority. [editorial note: also my #1 struggle]
- Exercise regularly. It gives energy for everything else.
- Eat healthy. It tunes up your body & mind.
- Love a lot. Start with yourself.
- Always preserve positive mental attitude. Remove distractions that pull you out of the balance.
- Create goals for yourself. Make decisions.
- Write your goals down on paper and think about them every day. Visualize.
- Take action every day. Go the extra mile.
- Take a break and breath deep regularly.
- Be present. See the extraordinary. (Stop and observe)
- Express gratitude daily. Give thanks.
- Share, and help others actively. Do good just because.
- Keep an open mind. Discourage prejudice and seek to learn and understand.
- Always try new things. Take risks. Explore the unknown.
- Remember to enjoy life. Stress less. Things are not that bad.
…to be continued — maybe.