A major challenge in life is to do as well as we know. We all aspire to better ourselves; the test is how to do so amidst the competing demands and pressures of everyday life. One key is to cultivate introspection, to go to the balcony, to deliberately, consciously, consistently observe ourselves, to get a self-administered master’s degree in the study of one’s self, almost regard ourselves as an anthropologist writing a dissertation on behavior and cultural development of this strange creature that is us. Where did these social norms originate? What purpose do these actions serve? What are the roots of these belief systems, what function do they have?
As we learn our triggers, as we come to understand how our environment shapes us, the thoughts we choose to allow in our minds in turn mold us and create emotions leading to action or inaction. As we discern how our chosen companions impact us, we begin to achieve an understanding of how better to order our lives. In effect we are discovering the “operating manual” we need, the toolbox of life management skills to live a life on purpose.
With that knowledge, we can improve our daily lives by each day being our best selves more often, resolving and learning how to “Act Above” the person we were yesterday.
“The goal is not to be better than the other man, but your previous self.” – The Dalai Lama
“Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.” – Maya Angelou
“You cannot dream yourself into a character; you must hammer and forge yourself one.” – Henry David Thoreau
“Every time you are tempted to react in the same old way, ask if you want to be a prisoner of the past or a pioneer of the future.” – Deepak Chopra
“How noble and good everyone could be if, every evening before falling asleep, they were to recall to their minds the events of the whole day and consider exactly what has been good and bad. Then without realizing it, you try to improve yourself at the start of each new day.” – Anne Frank
As always, I share what I most want and need to learn. – Nathan S. Collier