My favorite lifestyle writer, Leo Babauta, has celebrated his 38th birthday with 38 tips he’s learned over time. I’ll give you a few to whet your appetite. Check out his entire list. You will probably not agree with all 38, but they will help you live better.
1. Always swallow your pride to say you’re sorry. Being too proud to apologize is never worth it — your relationship suffers for no good benefit.
2. Possessions are worse than worthless — they’re harmful. They add no value to your life, and cost you everything. Not just the money required to buy them, but the time and money spent shopping for them, maintaining them, worrying about them, insuring them, fixing them, etc.
3. Slow down. Rushing is rarely worth it. Life is better enjoyed at a leisurely pace.
4. Goals aren’t as important as we think. Try working without them for a week. Turns out, you can do amazing things without goals. And you don’t have to manage them, cutting out on some of the bureaucracy of your life. You’re less stressed without goals, and you’re freer to choose paths you couldn’t have foreseen without them.
5. The moment is all there is. All our worries and plans about the future, all our replaying of things that happened in the past — it’s all in our heads, and it just distracts us from fully living right now. Let go of all that, and just focus on what you’re doing, right at this moment. In this way, any activity can be meditation.
6. When your child asks for your attention, always grant it. Give your child your full attention, and instead of being annoyed at the interruption, be grateful for the reminder to spend time with someone you love.
7. Don’t go into debt. That includes credit card debt, student debt, home debt, personal loans, auto loans. We think they’re necessary but they’re not, at all. They cause more headaches than they’re worth, they can ruin lives, and they cost us way more than we get. Spend less than you earn, go without until you have the money.
10. Never send an email or message that’s unfit for the eyes of the world. In this digital age, you never know what might slip into public view.
17. There are few joys that equal a good book, a good walk, a good hug, or a good friend. All are free.
18. Fitness doesn’t happen overnight. It’s a long process, a learning process, something that happens in little bits over a long period. I’ve been getting fit for five years now, and I still have more to learn and do. But the progress I’ve made has been amazing, and it’s been a great journey.
20. A good walk cures most problems. Want to lose weight and get fit? Walk. Want to enjoy life but spend less? Walk. Want to cure stress and clear your head? Walk. Want to meditate and live in the moment? Walk. Having trouble with a life or work problem? Walk, and your head gets clear.
28. Get some perspective. Usually when we’re worried or upset, it’s because we’ve lost perspective. In the larger picture, this one problem means almost nothing. This fight we’re having with someone else — it’s over something that matters naught. Let it go, and move on.