February 2023

Most people spend the first half of their lives collecting and the second half choosing what to keep.

Which lessons learned and pieces of advice do you plan to always carry with you?

You don’t burn out from working too much. You burn out from worrying too much.

Listen to the teaching, not the teacher

To live a long life, you need to unlock new worlds. The fastest way to do this is by spending time with people who don’t look, think, or act like you.

Getting to know other people’s stories will always be the best way to better write our own.

The best writing, or art of any kind, creates human connections. And that becomes harder and harder to do if you don’t prioritize connecting with actual humans — and that includes time with yourself.

Slow is smooth and smooth is fast

The words we read become the world we see.

Pick up the phone. Physically write a letter. Go see people in person.

Silent gratitude is selfish.

If you appreciate someone, tell them.

We don’t always get to choose the last time we get to say goodbye, but in the meantime, we do get to choose how often we say hello.

It’s hard to build the future we want to see if we don’t know what that looks like.

No matter your age, spend time with people younger and older than you.

They’ll teach you how to better see the world.

“The secret of change is to focus all your energy, not fighting the old, but on building the new.” — Socrates

Pain allows us to recognise what is important, and let go of unnecessary or wasteful actions. We must be careful not to become pleasure seekers but understand our underlying motives better.

If you now went back through life, knowing all you know now, would you be worried about the things that worried you the first time around?

The reason so many successful people seem so confident is because they failed so often that they know all the ways in which they can go wrong.

The world is littered with once-great things that deteriorated and failed; only a rare few have kept reinventing themselves to go on to new heights of greatness. All machines eventually break down, decompose, and have their parts recycled to create new machines. That includes us. –Ray Dalio

When setting a goal, ask yourself the following question: if I received no money, status, or external good for completing this goal, would I still do it?

PS: If money, status, or other external goods are some of your fundamental values, do not ask yourself this question! The point of this question is to eliminate common distractions in favour of aligning yourself with your fundamental values.

“Mindfulness gives us a lot more choice over what we pay attention to, and over how to be happy.” —AMY EDELSTEIN

Over time, the person who approaches life with an openness to being wrong and a willingness to learn outperforms the person who doesn’t.

“One sign that determination matters more than talent: there are lots of talented people who never achieve anything, but not that many determined people who don’t.” — Paul Graham

Reacting without reasoning makes every situation worse. Whether big or small, these unforced errors consume significant time and energy to get you back to where you were before.

“To be seen in this life, truly observed without judgment, is what it feels like to be loved.”

  • Cicely Tyson

Don’t waste your wild and precious life!

Science and religion were two sides of the same coin. Scientists have theories. Theologians have myths. Science and religion are complementary ways to think about the unthinkable and investigate the nature of reality.

“The first gulp from the glass of natural sciences will turn you into an atheist, but at the bottom of the glass God is waiting for you.” – Werner Heisenberg

Your ambition is limited by your knowledge.

When we look in a mirror, we dislike seeing all the flaws in our appearance, and the same thing is true when we examine other people. They, too, are like mirrors. So we are far more likely to forgive a weakness we have never experienced than one we struggle with daily.

Great listeners possess extraordinary skills of awareness and comprehension. They can assess situations with tremendous accuracy, and act in ways that maximize group effectiveness. No organization has enough of them, and if you have one of these great listeners as a friend or colleague, you soon learn that they are an invaluable resource.

One thing seems more and more evident to me now — people’s basic character does not change over the years. … Far from improving them, success usually accentuates their faults or short-comings. The brilliant guys at school often turn out to be not so brilliant once they are out in the world. If you disliked or despised certain lads in your class you will dislike them even more when they become financiers, statesmen or five star generals. Life forces us to learn a few lessons, but not necessarily to grow. – Henry Miller