Looking in the rearview mirror can deliver powerful insights.
Unfortunately, it usually also brings with it pain and regret. Although uncomfortable, the best way to learn is by enduring the consequences of a bad decision. Without reflecting on the past, we’ll never understand the best way to move forward.
Here are 20 things I’ve learned to be true about life.
1. Everyone is just guessing.
The vast majority of people are making things up as they go. No one has anything figured out — they’re learning as they go. The ones who appear to have it all “figured out” are just more experienced than you.
2. No one cares what you do.
Outside of your parents, family, and best friends, most people operate in their own world. Once you come to terms with this, you’ll realize there’s no reason not to be who you want to be. No matter what you do or how you act, people are generally cool with you being you.
3. Talent is overrated.
Success is not reserved only for the gifted or naturally-talented. What you lack in talent or intelligence, you can more than make up for with your willingness to put in time and effort. Bill Gates didn’t start out successful. Instead, he developed his skill by consistently beating on his craft, year after year.
4. Comparison is a plague.
Comparing yourself to someone else is a zero-sum game. Everyone is at a different point in life, which makes external comparison useless. The best benchmark for progress is how you stack up to who you were yesterday. It’s you versus you, not you versus them.
5. Consistency leads to proficiency.
Perfection is simply an excuse for inaction. No one is perfect — they’ve just been consistent enough to attain massive proficiency over time. The longer you can stick with something, the closer you’ll get to perfection.
6. Relationships are messy.
Perfect relationships are a myth. Real, authentic connections are often messy and uncomfortable. Feelings are hurt, words are said, apologies are accepted. Relationships take work, effort, and love — whether it’s a parent, sibling, significant other, or friend.
7. Money exists to create freedom.
Money by itself has no value. The real power of money is that it gives you the freedom to do what you want, when you want. Don’t work to be rich — work so that you can have the freedom to do exactly what you want to do.
8. Health is wealth.
As Jim Rohn once said, “Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live.” Neglecting your health isn’t hurting anyone but yourself. The healthier you are, the happier, more fulfilled, and longer you will live. Any investment into your health will pay back extravagantly over the long term.
9. The world is massive.
There’s so much more to the world than your neighborhood, town, state, or country. In the grand scheme of things, you are just a blip on an enormous planet. You’ll never regret traveling to experience something completely different from your norm.
10. Most people are good.
Sure, there will always be a few bad apples. But the large majority of people on the planet are genuinely good human beings. Expecting the best in people will vastly improve your outlook on life.
11. Everyone is creative.
Whether you express it through word, song, art, sport, or dance —you are creative. There is not a right or wrong way to express yourself. “I’m not creative” is just a lie we tell when we’re afraid to put ourselves out there.
12. Friendships take effort.
As you grow up, friendships naturally take a backseat to your career, family, or relationships. To stay close, you have to work at it. Keeping friends doesn’t just happen — it takes effort and intentional action.
13. Human beings thrive in nature.
There’s a unique sense of calm that comes with being in nature. If you’ve ever hiked up a mountain, swam in the ocean, or just driven through the countryside, you know what I mean. A playdate with mother nature can quickly cure stress and anxiety.
14. Automation is powerful.
Saving, investing, cleaning, productivity — the more you can automate, the more efficient you’ll be. Automation removes emotion from the decision, leading to time, efficiency, and monetary benefits.
15. Someone is always watching.
It could be a neighbor, the kid down the street, or that girl/boy you like. But someone is always watching and observing you. Set a good example and be the person you want to be.
16. Regret is a painful teacher.
The pain of not being able to correct a bad decision is haunting. Whether you destroyed your relationship or failed to take a leap of faith, the regret of that decision will eat at you. Learning to embrace the feeling of regret will help make the right decision in the future.
17. The first step is the most important one.
Never taking the first step is a sure-fire way to fail. If you want to make things happen, you have to take the first step and be willing to fail in the process. No one ever succeeded by sitting on the couch.
18. Vulnerability is a strength.
Telling someone you love them isn’t easy. But doing so is just like finishing a brutal workout — you’ll feel 10x better after you’re done. Unrelenting vulnerability is a strength often disguised as a weakness because it’s uncomfortable.
19. No one can live your life for you.
You get one life, so live it how you want to live it. Take chances, be vulnerable, chase your passion, and always follow your heart. At the end of the day, no one can change your life except you.
20. Life is finite.
The day you’re born, the timer starts ticking away. Every day that passes, you’re one day closer to death. Life is for living, not just waiting for the final buzzer to ring.
“Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well-preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming “Wow! What a Ride!”― Hunter S. Thompson
Ready to level-up?
If you want to feel incredible, improve your mindset, and get in the best shape of your life, check out the free ebook I made for you!