#2 — OneLife Theory: The 5 basic tenets of living life

Rajiv Srivatsa @telljeeves
Published in
3 min readMay 9, 2020


In this episode 3 the OneLife Theory podcast, I talk about the 5 basic tenets that act as the grounding to the entire OneLife Theory. The end of the article has the Youtube video and the podcast link. The video has more personal examples of all of the 5 points being discussed.

There are 5 basic tenets of the OneLife Theory —

One Physical Life

We all have this one physical life to live. It does not matter whether you realise it today or ten years from now. It does not matter whether you realise it in your 20s or 30s or 40s. It does not matter which life stage / event that you realise it — we all will conk off at some point (sorry to sound fatalistic). So there’s no point living a life that you are not happy about, or be with people that you don’t want to spend time with. You only remember this one life — you might as well live that to its full potential. (I know that many religions talk about karma / past lives etc. and there are techniques to go and study that, but most of us never get there, so I am going to simplify this and say this is the only life you remember :)

Living in the present

The past is great for nostalgia but there’s nothing useful that comes out of living in the past. The future is great for ambitions and goal setting, but there’s no other benefit over-thinking about it cause no one can predict what’s going to happen. (e.g. no one 3 months back predicted the mayhem that a small virus can cause to 7 billion people, economies, lives etc.) Hence, the only truth is the present moment and the only responsibility we have is to live that moment to its truest.

Living a full and useful life

There’s millions of things to do in this life irrespective of the cards you have been dealt with in any aspect of life. So make sure you keep your life busy across all aspects. Even being silent / doing nothing — when you are doing that — focus on doing that only. Being useful is another part of a human’s reason for existence — once you start serving other people or loving other people, there’s a sense of purpose to this otherwise potentially meaningless existence. So make sure that you are of use to something or someone.

Living to your infinite potential

We all believe that we are only destined for so much. We all live within a cocoon and think that the world around us is all the world that exists for us to play. Once we break that cocoon open, we realise that the world actually has millions of options across all aspects of life, and once we take some of those opportunities, the sky is the limit. The OneLife logo — one part of it — actually reflects this — the different color spikes infinitely reach out of the cocoon upwards to reach to infinity showing that the human potential is that.

Live your own story

End of the day, all of us are living different stories. The biggest difference between humans and other animals is our ability to tell elaborate stories. Yuval Harari talks about this extremely well in his landmark book ‘Sapiens’. Every institution in this world is a story — marriage, corporation, religion, etc. is at some level a human-created story from a few thousand years back. Try living your story, without judging others’ stories. Even this OneLife Theory is a story that I have created for my own sake and hopefully for a few others too — so don’t take this also too seriously end of the day :)

The video to this episode is here —

The podcast link is here — https://anchor.fm/onelife-theory/episodes/Episode-3---The-5-tenets-of-OneLife-Theory-ediqdb



Rajiv Srivatsa @telljeeves

Partner at @Antler India. Co-founder Urban Ladder. Write on Startups and Happiness. Podcast @OneLifeTheory. Jack of all trades, master of none!