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10 Ideas on Rules for Life

Updated on August 2, 2016

Goals, we're told, are the thing to have - personal goals, fitness goals, career goals - have a goal. But what if we're so busy pursuing our goals that we forget how to live?

Whatever your goals, and even if you don't have any at all, here are 10 suggestions of rules to live by. See what you think and add to the list.

1. Honesty.

When we're honest with ourselves and others about a situation, we can see it more clearly and broadly. Sometimes it takes a while to reflect, sort through an issue and see the facts, but realising what's right and not who's right can be a process for growth.

Being honest but kind with others can be a fine line. Temper honesty with diplomacy and do as you would be done unto.

2. Authenticity.

No one likes fake - fake Rolex, fake smiles, fake antiques: there aren't many good things about fakes. Being genuine takes some courage, honesty and confidence.

3. Positivity.

Focus on the up-side and balance this with realism. Never let what you can't do get in the way of what you can do because even the darkest situations may have a positive side somewhere. We just have to see it; sometimes it takes time and perspective.

We all know people who can vacuum the positive energy from a room with their negative energy. Don't be that person.

4. AND, not OR.

We seem to spend our lives having to decide between one thing or another when if we thought about it there may be a way to have both. There are few things in life that are truly mutually exclusive, so have your cake and eat it.


5. Prioritise.

As Stephen Covey tells us, some things are more important than others. Getting your tax return done before the deadline, getting to hospital if you have crushing central chest pain, losing weight or giving up smoking if you need to are examples of things that are more important than watching TV or surfing the 'net.

Stephen Covey puts the concepts of 'urgent' and 'important' into quadrants.

Urgent and important things are those that we've mentioned above and come under the 'do it right now' category.

Not urgent but important things are often those which will serve us in the longer term. Looking after our health, getting some exercise, nurturing our family lives and keeping up to date with our learning needs are examples. We should aim to do these regularly because if left unattended they can become urgent and important and then we feel like we're fire fighting.

Other things are urgent but not important, such as other people asking you to solve their problems. Dealing with these can be difficult and challenge us further with our ability to prioritise. Options include learning to say no, helping them to deal with their problems themselves or asking the person to come to you with a solution to discuss rather than a problem.

Some activities are not important and not urgent. They are often time-wasting activities so avoid them where possible.

6. Give of yourself.

There's more to your life than just you. Counting our blessings and looking for even the smallest ways to help others makes a difference to each of us. And it's good karma too.

7. Keep moving - both body and mind.

The evidence that keeping active as we age will help us lead happier, healthier and longer lives is overwhelming. A little light exercise that we enjoy, doing the crossword puzzle and spending time with family and friends are what we need.

8. Don't judge. We don't know the battles that other people are fighting every day, just as they don't know ours, sometimes even those closest to us. Be kinder than you need to be and tread gently; the rude neighbour (his wife has just been diagnosed with cancer) or the couldn't-care-less shop assistant (who's just been threatened with redundancy) need some understanding.

9. Let go of resentments.

Grudges are heavy; they weigh us down and make us weaker. Letting go of the hurt from the past isn't an instant process but it is worth doing.

Write a letter than you don't send, expressing that hurt and anger. Call the person up and arrange to meet and talk with them about what happened. Write in your journal or write on note paper and burn it to symbolise your letting it go.

10. Don't waste time.

Wasted money can always be re-earned. Wasted time can't be re-earned or recycled. Our days are numbered so be present and enjoy every moment and fill them with life well lived.

Keep moving towards goals with mindfulness of our own rules for life.


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    • Dianemae profile image

      Dianemae 6 years ago

      Great advice. The world would be a much happier place if others would follow you. Thanks

    • Temirah profile image

      Temirah 6 years ago

      Thanks Bud, your hub is a good addition too.

    • Bud Gallant profile image

      Bud Gallant 6 years ago from Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

      Awesome hub! Stephen Covey is brilliant. I'm a big fan.

      I really like this list you made, and I totally agree that these are all important principles for life.

    • Temirah profile image

      Temirah 6 years ago

      You're so right midnightbliss (great name by the way!). Attitude is everything.

    • midnightbliss profile image

      Haydee Anderson 6 years ago from Hermosa Beach

      very nice hub, being positive is sometimes difficult specially if your in a bad situation but good things comes when we see things in a brighter perspective.

    • Temirah profile image

      Temirah 6 years ago

      sofs and Eiddwen - thank you for your support and encouragement. More hubs in the brewing stages!

    • sofs profile image

      sofs 6 years ago

      Great hub. Some values to live by. We could all do with such reminders from time to time :) Thanks for sharing.

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 6 years ago from Wales

      Another very useful hub and I vote up . Please keep them coming and here's to many more hubs to share.

      Take care


    • Temirah profile image

      Temirah 6 years ago

      Thanks Alladream and Denise for reading it, that's really kind and I'm so glad you enjoyed it.

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 6 years ago from North Carolina

      This was no ordinary hub-it was awesome. voted it up. Wonderful list to live by. I'm bookmarking it under 'special'. Thanks for sharing.

    • Alladream74 profile image

      Victor Mavedzenge 6 years ago from Oakland, California

      Brilliantly done.I enjoy how you balance existing with living.Very cool hub

    • Temirah profile image

      Temirah 6 years ago

      Thanks perfectperception, that's great feedback and I'm glad you enjoyed it.

    • perfectperception profile image

      perfectperception 6 years ago from USA

      Very interesting points. I especially agree with and cherish honesty, as I'm honest to a fault at times, so I'm learning some tact as it is important as well. But your points on authenticity and positivity REALLY hit home. I preach it all the time and you're right, no one likes fake besides it definitely come through, if not immediately eventually. Bravo. I look forward to reading more.

    • Temirah profile image

      Temirah 6 years ago

      Thanks Mohammad. Much appreciated as always.

    • Mohammad Mohsin profile image

      Mohammad Mohsin 6 years ago from Lahore, Pakistan

      nice hub... voted up