Hello my friend,
Bit of housekeeping, would you share the article with some of your friends?
Over the past few years, you've certainly learned a few things and drawn yourself an inner map that you use to navigate through your life. We all have or should have such a map and a north star that shows us the way.
For me, inner work and feedback from others are enormously important. Because that's the only way we can grow personally.
There is nothing outside of you that could ever enable you to become better, stronger, richer, faster, or smarter. Everything is inside. Everything exists. Do not look for anything outside of yourself.
Much of the work and ideas I offer have eternal value for the way we might think and live today. And I believe that the longer something has stood the test of time, the more likely it is to be reliable. That's why I value ancient philosophy, values, and writings so much.
What I observe a lot in the world today are behaviors that lead to conflict and unrest. We flee from ourselves and from the world we could have. We look at many things too simple and some things too complicated.
Here is a small selection of principles I strive for:
1. Accept everything as it is
I understood as a child that the way we deal with everything depends on our mind. What we see with our eyes is just that at first, but what we then think determines what it becomes. The way we react determines the course of history.
Have you felt lately that everything is getting on top of you or that everything seems to be going against you? It's stressful, and it feels like too much is happening all at once. But we can remedy that with the stoic reminder: the dichotomy of control.
Some things are within our power, others are not. In our power are opinion, motivation, desire, and, in a word, everything in our own power; not in our power are our body, our property, our reputation, our office, and, in a word, everything not in our power - Epictetus.
Instead of worrying about many things, even one thing we cannot control, we should shift our focus from these external events to internal motives and accomplishments. You cannot control the outcome of a tournament, but you can control how well you show up there.
2. Do not regret what you have done
Life is full of things that just "happen." We can't change them. Whether they are problems, setbacks, or great opportunities, this is up to you.
But remember: regret means being angry about what happened. It doesn't change anything, but it hurts you. Regret only adds stress to what we are already struggling with. Even if what we did was completely immoral or malicious, living with regret won't help.
That's not to say we shouldn't be responsible and accountable, but feeling regret, whether from external pressure or from yourself, won't change what happened. The change will only change what happened.
3. Do not seek pleasure for its own sake.
As human beings, we spend too much time chasing pleasure - we have become part of a society obsessed with sexual pleasure, giving in to our cravings and constantly reaching for more. Live life at the moment. Also, pleasure should be enjoyed naturally rather than pursued.
The problem with pleasure and desire is that it leads to wanting more and yet more. We work hard to satisfy our desires in order to feel pleasure for a short time. Then we stop the whole cycle again. We want to keep up with the others. It's something Eckart Tolle taught me very early on. It is not easy to understand but unfolds its power over time.
Imagine getting a big gift, or a new romance, or an iphone notification. It's exciting for a short time, but it doesn't necessarily improve your daily happiness level. You achieve one thing, and you're already looking for the next. There will always be something you don't have at that moment.
Instead, question what you desire. Part with what you don't need and keep what is meaningful. Put less emphasis on so many things, and more emphasis on very few.
– Don’t want more than you have
4. Think of yourself lightly and of the world profoundly.
In competition training, it always happens that we lose many times, but when the day comes to win, we give everything we can and we will win.
Wisdom is the quality of good judgment, and the only way to understand good judgment is to first understand what bad judgment is. That requires asking questions and failing and failing often.
In personal life, it means knowing when to be social, how to be social, when to be alone, and how to enjoy being alone. In business, it's understanding what to improve, where to improve it, why this is the right decision, and how to make that change. Every question and failure improves your judgment.
But you can't take the time to understand this if you take yourself too seriously. You put too much pressure on yourself, forget what's important and waste time. Today's good artists make what they do look like a game. It looks like a game, and the output is incredible. And that's because they don't take themselves too seriously, because otherwise the tension they carry would exhaust them and slow them down.
5. Do not rely on a partial feeling under any circumstances.
If you don't want to say 100% yes to something, say no. If you ever have to decide to do something, and if your feelings don't include an inner 'Wow! That would be awesome! Absolutely! Hell yes!' - then say no," and that's it.
Our habits make up forty percent of what we do on any given day. That means that sixty percent of our decisions can potentially be influenced by the world. Often that leads to things we later regret or things that don't align with our values or our desires.
If you don't feel very optimistic about what you want to do, don't do it.
6. Resentment and complaints are not appropriate for yourself or others.
I don't focus on complaining or getting angry about what others are doing better. I focus on getting better with every mistake and learning at every opportunity.
As jealousy, resentment and complaints are two other toxic byproducts of status games. Being resentful and complaining are two deeply ingrained character traits. It's hard to accept what we don't like, like admitting when we're wrong, and it's hard to experience things we don't like without complaining or expressing our dissatisfaction to someone. As I said in one of my last articles, it always leads to a division of ourselves and others.
Instead, ask yourself, "For what good reason am I the way I am?" you won't have a good answer because there is no good answer.
A mindset that holds on to anger, resentment, or discontent is unhealthy and self-defeating. The way to eliminate resentment and discomfort is to first understand how it sounds when it comes from you, then stop yourself when it happens, and ask why it is necessary.
7. Do not act according to habitual beliefs.
Society is trained to think alike, like a herd. That is what keeps everyone and everything in order. In society, we are moldable; easily influenced by the pressures of what other people do and say to us. This leads us to develop beliefs that are not necessarily good for us but follow the status quo. I don't want to tell you to go against society, that would be inconsistent with all the other rules of mine.
It's easy for your boss to tell you to do something because "we've always done it that way," but who says that? Why do we do it this way when there is clearly a better way?
It's fear that makes everyone think the same way. Fear keeps us from having our own beliefs, processes, ideas, and opinions. We grow up being taught to conform, to be like everyone else, and be "normal", we are told not to take risks when in reality it is more dangerous not to take risks.
8. Never be jealous
Jealousy is a toxic byproduct of status games; a game society plays to place everyone in a hierarchy. Oh God, I could really write a lot about power and status. But it's very important to understand. Why are we jealous? Often to then say or do things that belittle others and make ourselves feel better. Jealousy is also deeply rooted in envy, we want something that others already have.
Most of us know that there is absolutely no good reason to be jealous of anything, and yet we are.
I was like that too, negative and jealous of others who had what I wanted. That's incredibly damaging. So I forced myself to change my attitude, whether I liked it or not.
Instead of coveting what someone has and being negative about it, I tell myself to say something good about that person and leave it at that. This is liberating. I remind myself of who I am, what I want, how I want to live, and none of it involves negativity.
There's no point in being jealous. This feeling is amplified in today's world to make us greedy - always wanting more than the other person. This drives you into a spiral of negativity.
But it makes perfect sense to think kindly about everything and everyone, whether it's selfless or not, it's a win-win. I'm happier and more peaceful, and I don't bring negativity onto others that I then have to deal with. And that's what I want.
9. Be Calm Where and How You Live
You should accept the life you are given for the sake of your mental health. Despair, stress, and anxiety are natural parts of your life, and you shouldn't attack them. The truth is that if you accept the most difficult aspects of life, it can make them stronger to their progress.
Indifference means being indifferent to the things that are happening around you. I could never have improved to the level I am at today if I had stayed where I was yesterday.
Instead of living around others caught up in news, drama, and emotion, take a step away from it and question what you are seeing. Often we stay in an environment that is not good for us simply because we don't know any better. That is why it is important to get out of our "comfort zone".
Stay away from all negative people, news, and unstable emotions. Find out who and what makes you happier and spend your time there.
10. Never deviate from the path
Health, love, and life itself need to be treasured above anything else in the world.
Never deviate from your purpose if you are convinced of it. If you want to combine what you love with what you are good at and strive to make a valuable contribution to your future and the world in which you live, then avoid anything that tries to dissuade you from your way of living and thinking if it does not bring you closer to the truth as you weigh it.
Others will try to dissuade you from your way because they are afraid of uncertainty. They don't understand it themselves, so they try to push you away from it.
But for me, life is about meaning. It's about creating your own mind, your own beliefs, based on experiences and information you've gathered and evaluated to become the person you want to be.
Malte J. Wagenbach