I just read this blog post, and it inspired me so much. It’s funny though, because it’s really just a collection of small lessons – they’re astonishingly true because they’re so simple. I decided I wanted to do something similar. Presented here is a small, humble collection of my own rules for life, and all the little things I’ve picked up along the way.
1. Keep looking for the one who won’t break your heart.
We all have to learn this, and honestly, most of us have to learn it over and over: no matter what movies and books and TV shows tell us, love itself is not enough. You can fall in love with someone you’re never supposed to be with. It happens every day. But there’s one thing that makes it all worth it; makes heartbreak worth fighting through. One day you’ll meet someone and you’ll love them, and it won’t be the wrong time or the wrong place or the wrong thing, for either of you. It’ll be right – it’ll finally be right. We’re all going to spend our lives falling in love with people who break our hearts, and then we’ll meet someone who won’t. I refuse to stop searching for that person.
2. Give more credit to the people in your life than you think they deserve.
Trust is hard. And I’m not talking about trusting someone with your secrets – sometimes, opening your mouth and letting those spill out is much easier than it should be. No, it’s hard to trust someone to genuinely care about you. It’s hard to believe that people really like you, and harder to believe that they’ll keep loving you when you screw up or get needy and demanding. But 99 percent of the time, that doubt comes from your own insecurities. People almost always love you more – and are more willing to stick with you through the tough times – than you expect.
3. Don’t settle for a life without passion.
Very few of us are blessed with passions or talents that will bring us six-figure salaries or simple lives. But it’s absolutely essential to pursue those passions anyway. Money and comfort aren’t the things that get you out of bed in the morning – it’s a genuine, fiery love for what you do that propels you, always. Never give up something you love in favor of something easy, and never let someone’s talk of practicality dissuade you from doing what you know is right for you. And you do know, deep down. Listen to your own inner voice and never stop chasing that one thing that makes you tick. You may trip and skin your knees a time or two, and you’ll certainly get tired along the way, but it’s one race that’ll always be worth running.
4. Have faith in little adjustments.
When my dad was teaching me how to drive, he repeated one phrase over and over. It was like he needed a mantra to keep himself from grabbing the wheel and returning the car to the hands of a licensed driver. “Little adjustments,” he said. “Just little adjustments.” He really just meant that turning wasn’t a matter of flipping the entire wheel over itself, but I’ve learned that little adjustments applies to life as well. When you’re off-track, sometimes you avoid making any changes at all. Sometimes, the thought of fixing everything that needs to be fixed is too overwhelming to face. But the fact is, all you really need to do is make at least one little adjustment every day. Get up earlier. Go to the gym for an hour. Eat one healthy meal or forgo one snack. Cross one assignment off your to-do list. Just doing one thing lightens your load and makes you capable of tackling more the next day.
5.Find someone to love about everyone.
Some people are obnoxious. Some people are frustrating. Some people just rub you the wrong way. In fact, all of us are obnoxious and frustrating and grating at least some of the time. But I refuse to believe that there isn’t something good about every single person on the planet. And finding those good things is one of the fun things about life. You’ll start seeking out traits you admire: this person is a little late and unreliable but they come through beautifully in an emotional crisis, another person is quiet in public but lights up around her family, another hasn’t quite figured out how to handle relationships maturely but is unfalteringly loyal to the people that become a part of his life. It’s true that you can’t love everyone equally – but you can love everyone you meet.
Those are great rules. I actually have a blog called “Five Rules For Life” where people submit their Five Rules. I hope you check it out – it has been up and running for several years, and there are a lot of thought-provoking submissions.