Socrates once said, “I know one thing—that I know nothing.”
I heard this paradoxical sentence from a teacher when I was 15. It made such an impact on me that I have been using it ever since. To me, “I know nothing” means that you can always learn from everyone and everything.
Don’t create to leave a legacy, but to be of use. Make music, write a book, build a table. You’ll feel good about yourself, while you also make something for people to use or enjoy.
Don’t forget to thank for the things you have been given, even those you take for granted: seeing, hearing, walking, being loved, a beautiful day.
Complaining is the biggest waste of time there is. Either you can do something about the problem, or you should stop fussing.
Don’t judge people. Help them instead.
Enjoy small things.
Everyone says they know it, but no one lives up to it. They just chase big things.
Give without expecting something in return.
Don’t keep score. You will become a bitter person if you do that. Give solely for the joy of giving. If you get something in return, great, and if you don’t, great.
Learn every day.
You don’t have to read a book a day to learn every day, but you should read some once in a while. Learn from your mistakes. Learn from the people around you—be open to what they can teach you.
Money isn’t important.
We need money. The problem lies in becoming too dependent on it and in not being generous enough. Don’t become too dependent on the stuff you own—otherwise, the stuff will own you.
Never look back for too long.
Reflecting on the past is only good for one thing—learning.
Pick a work, not a job.
If you want to become good at something, you need to spend years doing it. Choose a work you love and start at the bottom. You will find the perfect role for you eventually.
Respect other people.
Just because people make different choices from yours, that doesn’t mean their differences should not be respected. Respect other people and you will get respect.
Rest before you are tired.
Even if you love your job and every day seems like a holiday, you need to take time to rest. You’re a person, not a machine. Never forget that.
See beyond appearances.
In a world that puts so much value on make-believe, it is vital to look for the truth of things.
Something good always comes out of something bad.
No matter how hard a situation may be, facing difficulties helps us to grow up.
Spend time with the people you love.
Treasure the time you spend with your family and those who love you. Remember that all things pass; only affection remains.
Start each day anew.
Begin each day as if you had been given a new life to live.
Take ten minutes of silence each day.
Sit down in a comfortable place, close your eyes, and slowly relax your body. Calm down and quieten your thoughts.
Take the initiative.
Don’t just sit there; do something constructive for yourself and for others. Without action, there is no outcome.
There’s no end game.
We, as a species, just are. Don’t try to figure it all out. Treasure your journey through life.
Think about others.
Just be mindful, that’s all. We all have families, bills to pay, and our own issues. Don’t always make everything about yourself. To be kind is not a sign of weakness but of character.