I need references. That is, I need references to remind me how to live, what decisions to make, how to act daily, how to get the best from life. Jordan Peterson‘s book, the 12 Rules for Life, will be re-read time and time again until I kick the bucket.
I’d like to spend more time thinking about lessons learned, and rules to live by. Rules are not restrictive. Sure, the government’s rules often are, but rules we use to point our lives in the right direction allow us to head in the direction we desire instead of drifting down a river, allowing the current of life to push us to where it wants us to go, to failure.
Thus, we have the goal: we are not here to exist, but to improve. We have potential, and it’s our duty to do our best to reach it.
One day I’ll have a little one, and I’ll get working on that list now.
This list will be brief, and I’ll update it from time to time, but I’d love to hear your feedback, so by all means comment. Tell me where I’m wrong, where I need to elaborate, and even more importantly, what you’ve learned thus far that you’d add to the list.
12 Lessons to my Unborn Son
“To be what we are, and to become what we are capable of becoming, is the only end of life.” ― Robert Louis Stevenson
1. Never complain. Complaining makes you the victim. You are not a victim. You can never be a victim, so don’t in any way allow that line of thinking to enter into your mind. Find what you can control, and control it.
2. Never envy. Appreciate that talent and hard work and sacrifice and persistence exist. When you see it in another human, applaud it, and them for it. Never want to be in someone else’s shoes. You are in your own, and it’s your duty to make the best with what you have, where you’re born, and who you are.
3. Win today. While your goals may be grand, it’s important to focus on what you can control. You can always control how today is lived. Don’t worry too much about the future or dwell too often on the past. Win today. If you do that often enough you will win your life.
4. Set your sights high and true. Don’t blindly want what others want, and don’t settle for goals and dreams you feel you’re supposed to have. If you truly want something, no matter how grand it may be, set your sights at it and work until it’s yours. But don’t fall into the trap of thinking ‘things’ are goals, aspirations, objects that will bring you fulfillment, they won’t.
5. Work hard. Get after it. When you decide to do something, do it with everything you have. Don’t be lazy. Laziness is sin, it’s never won anyone anything except regret, envy, and sadness. Whatever you’re doing, work hard at it.
6. Focus. Nothing great will be won without focus. Losers dabble. Don’t dabble. If you set your mind to something, give it the energy, the attention, the focus required to give it a chance to be attained.
7. Stay the course. The journey is where life is, it’s where lessons are found, it’s where character is created, tested, and brought to light. Don’t ever quit. Stay the course.
8. Do your duty, as a man. Take care of others. Be dependable. Be reliable. Be successful. Be honorable. Be tough. Be courageous. Defend those under your care, and those who aren’t. Be a leader, a warrior. Be a man.
9. Train your body vigorously. It is better to be strong than it is to be weak. So train your body to have some use, to open doors, train it daily, be strong, do not be weak.
10. Dare mightily. Never choose the safe path, it won’t bring you the fulfillment you will eventually crave. Always choose danger, always dare to go where others are afraid to venture.
11. Be frugal, but take risks. Take risks with your money, but risks that can potentially create more wealth. Don’t waste your money on things, on objects. Only invest. Invest in businesses, in companies, in experiences and relationships, in yourself and your growth. Don’t waste money, ever.
12. Keep the faith. Question your faith so you can understand your faith. But no matter how dark things get, no matter how meaningless, empty, or difficult life seems, God is there for you, and with you. Every trial in life is a piece of a greater puzzle. Those who struggle well complete it, those who avoid struggle fail to.
What would you add?