Most people crave to live a good life however they often realize that there are no clear guidelines to enable them govern their lives accordingly. The following 10 golden rules to live by will ensure that you live a good life full of happiness while giving you strength to handle adversities:
1. Worry about things you can control and change by your actions not about what is beyond your capacity to alter or direct.
This rule borrows heavily from ancient Stoic wisdom although the lessons to be learnt from it are applicable in the modern world. This principle seeks to help resist the discord and hardship that intrude into the lives of every human being. According to this rule you should cultivate an attitude towards adversity that is based on the distinction between those things that you can control against things you have no capacity to influence. The victim of an accident or natural disaster may not be able to recover to live their lives as before but they can save themselves from self-torment. It may not be possible to control all the outcomes in life but it is possible to control your response to such outcomes.
2. Examine your life, engage it with a vengeance and search for new destinies and pleasures to reach with your mind
This golden rule echoes the wisdom of ancient Greek philosophers including Plato and Socrates. The rule stipulates that in order to live well you have to examine your life using the ability to reason which is nature’s gift to humanity. The ability to reason is evident in all phases of life from the toddlers who seeks to explore their new surroundings to grandparents who reads and assesses the newspaper headlines. The ability to reason enables humans to be involved actively in life, to think, explore and discover new resources.
3. Treasure true friendships since they cannot be acquired in the market place but can only be nurtured in relationships full of amity and trust
This is another principle among the 10 golden rules to live by that is also borrowed from Greek philosophy. A defining characteristic of humanity is the ability to form deep association with others also known as friendship. Animals usually do not need this kind of association; however human beings cannot be fulfilled without the associative bond called friendship. The bond cannot be replaced by status, wealth or power hence true friends should be treasured.
4. Master yourself and resists outside forces that try to delimit your thought and actions, cease from deceiving yourself
Before the father of modern psychology Sigmund Freud came on the scene ancient people believed that freedom was a dual battle. The first battle was against external forces that seek to delimit action and thought. The second a battle is fought from within to quell spiritual and psychological powers that stall a healthy self-sufficiency. Ancient people knew that human beings had a great capacity for self-deception which is always at the expense of reality and truth, self-deception often ends up in catastrophe.
5. Live a balanced life and avoid excesses
This is a useful nugget of wisdom among the 10 golden rules to live by that seek to prove that even good things if not done or pursued in moderation can lead to sorrow and suffering. Ancient thinkers often viewed moderation as a solution to life’s riddles. The Greeks knew to well that when people violate the limits to a reasonable balance in life they pay a high price for it.
6. Act responsibly and stop blame shifting for your shortcomings and errors
Always be prepared to accept responsibility and consequences for your actions. Pythagoras the great mathematician knew that human beings have a tendency to blame others for their wrongdoing. Few people ever own up and hold themselves accountable for mishaps and errors that occur in life. The easiest option is to blame others and complain about how the situation was not within your control. Unfortunately people who feed themselves on a diet of self-exemption run the risk of living dangerously, such people usually corrupt their essence as human beings.
7. Prosperity is not a cure-all by itself; money is necessary but not a sufficient condition to live a good life full of wisdom and happiness
Prosperity means different things to different people, for some it is about wealth accumulation in the form of real estate, money and equities. For others it is about accumulation of power and status. In both cases prosperity requires wisdom otherwise those who spend all their energy pursuing it heedlessly might find more grief than happiness.
8. Do not seek to harm others or repay evil with evil
Evildoing is a habit that carries a great risk although it is often justified in the quest for a good life. Harming others involves 2 victims; the victimizer and the receiver of the harm. Modern culture has condoned payback, settling scores or preemptive gestures in advance of anticipated injury. Today it is quite justifiable to get even and render evil for evil, however this is against the 10 golden rules to live by. What most people tend to ignore is the emotional, psychological and spiritual impact of evil on both parties.
9. Kindness will always be rewarded in the long run
Being good to others is a habit that reinforces your quest for a good life; it bestows on you and others a sense of satisfaction and fulfillment. Modern religious though tends to perceive kindness as a type of investment towards future salvation or admission to paradise. Ancient Greek saw kindness from as a positive act that not only has positive effects on the giver but also on the receiver. To put it simply kindness tends to return to those who did such acts.
10. You can learn something from everyone
This principle is among the 10 golden rules to live by that seek to challenge people to listen to others rather than always think they are better at everything. In life never assume you are always better than everyone, just as you expect to learn from an acclaimed CEO you can also learn important lessons from a homeless beggar. Each person has something they are good at so never be too quick to dismiss others.