MY BOOK REVIEWS

Book No – 1

The Happiness Trap :How to Stop Struggling and Start Living__ By Russ Harris

Posted in Self-Improvement by Joe Sehrawat

the-happiness-trap-stop-struggling-start-living

Hello Everyone,

In this series of my book reviews and an unending quest of acquiring incredible wisdoms, I have decided to share my book notes with you.

The technique of ACT (Acceptance and Commitment Therapy) will help you live life fully. It can help to reduce stress and worry plus handle painful feelings. This book will guide you on how to pursue happiness.

People are now caught in a psychological trap. The more you seek happiness, the more it might elude you. ACT has helped many people so far. Modern society and a higher standard of living doesn’t seem to have people happy. 10% of people have suffered from clinical depression. In the past, people just avoided getting killed. Now, we spend a lot of worrying about other stuff. We like to compare ourselves with others and like to fit in to groups. The human appetite is insatiable. The moment you have something, you want more again. The common definition of happiness is of feeling good. The other definition is ‘living a rich, full, and meaningful life.’ The reality is, life involves pain. There’s no getting away from it. Learn to live a rich and meaningful life and happiness will come to you. Savor your journey.

Myth 1:– Happiness is the natural state for all human beings. It is rare and it is incorrect to assume that you are naturally happy.

Myth 2: – If You’re not Happy, You’re Defective.

Myth 3: – To Create a Better Life, We Must Get Rid of Negative Feelings. It is okay to feel stress, challenge sometimes etc.

Myth 4: – You Should be Able to Control What You Think and Feel.

We have a larger control over our actions than our thoughts and feelings. The Illusion of Control. We have, in fact, very little control of the internal world. One has lesser control over thoughts and feelings. Men like to bottle up their feelings. Some people don’t like to reveal their feelings as they don’t want to be judged by others.

Trying to get all the negative emotions away can be a bad thing. If you are an introvert and fear human interaction, the more you sit quietly and do nothing, the more you will gradually fear human interaction. Although, in the same term, you might be less fearful. Tackle problems immediately and do not allow it to fester or worsen. The two common control strategies are: fight or flight. Flight à Escaping/Distraction/Zoning Out (Alcohol etc). Fight à Suppression/Arguing/Taking Charge/Self-Bully. They don’t work all the time. They become problematic if you use them excessively, in situations where they can’t work and if it stops you from doing things you value. Grief is a normal feeling. For some of us, we refuse to accept feelings of grief. For the not so important things in life, controlling them using the techniques above are easier. The primary motivation matters too. It should not be to get rid of bad thoughts and feelings only. Self-awareness is the key.

So here is the happiness trap in a nutshell: to find happiness, we try to avoid or get rid of bad feelings, but the harder we try, the more bad feelings we create. – Russ Harris

What do you cherish most in life? Health? Work? Family? Friends? Religion? Sports? Nature? It’s no surprise that life is richer and more fulfilling when we actively invest our time and energy in the things that are most important or meaningful to us. – Russ Harris

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy. (1) Delusion: lose ability to frighten, disturb, worry, stress, or depress you. (2) Expansion: Make room for unpleasant feelings. (3) Connection: Connect with the present moment. (4) The Observing Self. (5) Values: Clarify and connect with your values. (6) Committed Actions.

Mindfulness is a mental state of awareness, openness and focus. Mindfulness + Values + Action = Psychological Flexibility.

We think that we must give full attention to our thoughts. Fusion means the story and the event become stuck together. We like to think thoughts are reality and the truth. Add the words ‘I’m having the thought that ..XX’… Distance yourself from the thought and it is less likely you will think it’s true anymore. This is known as defusion. Another way is to think of music. Most of them have negative content. Learn to defuse them so that they won’t affect you. Give the particular thought structure a name too. 1) Having the Thought That…2) Musical Thoughts…3) Naming the Story. When you are depressed, your mind will start thinking of stories too.

The mind loves telling stories; in fact, it never stops. All day, every day, it tells you stories about what you should be doing with your life, what other people think of you, what will happen in the future, what went wrong in the past, and so on. It’s like a radio that never stop broadcasting. – Russ Harris

Figure out whether the thought is giving you good advice. If it is not, defuse it. If the thought can improve your life, then it is worth listening to. All beliefs are stories. Most of the time, you can’t choose the thoughts in your head. Learn to start thanking your mind. You could imagine a cartoon character speaking your thought aloud. Thoughts are largely a string of words. Pay attention to thoughts which will help you.

What if defusion still makes you anxious? Defusion is an acceptance strategy. You have to truly accept the uncomfortable thoughts and feelings. Acceptance means embracing life. Accepting means being fully accepting of the reality of your situation. Defusion is an acceptance technique. The negative thoughts won’t go away and you must gradually learn to accept them.

It’s important to let go of any expectations that your stories will go away or show up less frequently. As it happens, very often they will go away. But if you’re defusing them to make them go away, then by definition you’re not truly accepting them. And you know where that leads. – Russ Harris

The bottom line is not whether a thought is positive or negative, true or false, pleasant or unpleasant, optimistic or pessimistic, but whether it helps you create a fulfilling life. – Russ Harris

Recognize your thinking self and observing self. Learn to treat your thoughts as simply background noise. If the thoughts is useful, pay attention to it. If not, accept and then ignore it. To concentrate on your observing self, use ten deep breaths. During this process, when you get hooked on a thought, unhook yourself and concentrate on breathing again.

Our thinking self is a bit like a radio, constantly playing in the background. Most of the time it’s the Radio Doom and Gloom show, broadcasting negative stories 24 hours a day. It reminds us of bad things from the past, it warns us of bad things to come in the future, and it gives us regular updates on everything that’s wrong with us…Unfortunately, there’s no way to switch off this radio. Even Zen masters are unable to achieve such a feat. – Russ Harris

The demons can’t kill you. They are powerless to stop you. The demons will try to stop you. There is a lot more to life than the demons.

How would I act differently if painful thoughts and feelings were no longer an obstacle? What projects or activities would I start if my time and energy weren’t consumed by troublesome emotions? What would I do if fear were no longer an issue? What would I attempt if thoughts of failure didn’t deter me? – Russ Harris

What are emotions? Emotions cause us to take action. It tends to enable us to take action. Do emotions control our behavior? No it doesn’t! Anxious speakers can learn to act calm during public speaking. Emotions are like the weather. They ebb and flow.

Although you don’t have much direct control over your feelings, you can directly control your actions. This realization will have important practical applications later because when it comes to making important changes in your life, it’s far more useful to focus on what you can control rather than on what you can’t. – Russ Harris

In quicksand, your emotions will tell you to struggle. But you mustn’t. Turn off the struggle switch if needed.

Our brain loves to gossip and loves stories. Think about your programming as a child. Why am I like this? I can’t handle it! I shouldn’t feel like this! I wish I didn’t feel like this! React by saying ‘Thanks Mind, but I’m not playing today.’ Your observing self is more powerful than your thinking self

Learn the term ‘expansion’. Expansion means making room for our feelings. Accommodate them. The thinking self never shuts up. Practice deep breathing.

Accepting discomfort has only one purpose: to help you take your life forward in a meaningful direction. Thus, in bringing up some discomfort in order to practice expansion, you are learning a valuable skill for transforming your life. – Russ Harris

It is not easy to practice expansion. It is difficult, but like any other skill, you will get better with practice. When your mind is overwhelming, say Thanks Mind. Acceptance comes first before fun activities. Accept your thoughts and feelings. Connect with your values. Take effective action

Values are important because they can guide you and motivate you through situations where your feelings might lead you off course. Acting in accordance with your own deepest values is inherently satisfying and fulfilling – even though it often forces you to face your fears. – Russ Harris

Emotions prime your body to take action. Some urges can be very strong. If the urge is not consistent with who you are, then don’t act on it. Check with your values. Make room for your urges. Like a wave, the urge will grow in size and then gradually subside. You can’t act on your urges.

Therefore, once you are aware of an urge, you need to ask yourself, “If I act on this urge, will I be acting like the person I want to be? Will it help take my life in the direction I want to go? – Russ Harris

There is only one time that is important: NOW! It is the most important time because it is the only time when we have any power. – Leo Tolstoy

The observing self is incapable of boredom. It registers everything it observes with openness and interest. It’s only the thinking self that gets bored, because boredom is basically a thought process: a story that life would be more interesting and more fulfilling if we were doing something else. The thinking self is easily bored because it thinks it already knows it all. – Russ Harris

Sad scenarios are common. Do not focus on unpleasant thoughts and feelings. Connect with happy moments. Connection with pleasant experiences. It can be a simple activity. Pretend that it’s your first time ever doing it. The author had to wash the dirty dog when he had other important tasks to do. Connect with your experience and make the most of it. Do not judge. Connect with the mundane tasks in life if they enhance your life in the long term. Pick a chore and have no expectations. Connect with a task you’ve been avoiding.

Many people fail to make important changes – changes that could significantly enhance their lives – because they’re unwilling to accept the discomfort that accompanies change. For example, you may avoid changing to a more meaningful career because you don’t want the discomfort of starting from scratch. Or you may avoid asking someone on a date because you don’t want to risk rejection. – Russ Harris

It’s time to take a detour. Mindfulness means being aware of your experience, be open, receptive etc. It is a conscious process. It is about awareness. Bring your awareness to the present moment.

We let our judgments, complaints, and criticisms come and go like passing cars, and we fully engage in the present moment. When we are mindful of our own thoughts, we can see them for what they are and let them go. When we are mindful of our feelings, we can make room for them and let them be. And when we are mindful of our here-and-now experience, we are deeply connected with it. – Russ Harris

When people are stressed, they might hyperventilate. Learn to practice deep breathing. Breathing can be a good control strategy. You can practice it anytime of the day too. It can allow you more time to make better decisions etc. Learn to recognize your brain when it is judging. Give factual descriptions, not judgmental ones.

What do you most dislike about yourself? If you think too much, then you will likely have low self-esteem. Using of positive affirmations won’t help that much too. Sometimes, just step out of the battle. Let go of judging yourself. You don’t need high self-esteem to succeed. However, most people with high self-esteem lead into other problems. Take action in line with your values. Recognize fully your strengths and weaknesses.

Society teaches us that thinking is almighty. The book recommends an exercise for you. The observing self is crucial for self-awareness. It never changes no matter what role you think. It is a viewpoint. It simply notices things. It is always there, but you need to access it. It is forever unchanging. It is the source of true acceptance. What makes you? Use defusion, expansion and connection to overcome obstacles.

Values and goals are different. Values are always better. The author mentions about Viktor Frankl’s struggle in the concentration camp. The ones who survived were not the fittest, but the most connected to life. Values make life worth living. Values help us overcome challenges. If you value nature, then it is worth the effort to organize a trip.

We go through life following the same routine, day after day. But in order to create a rich, full, and meaningful life, we need to stop to reflect on what we’re doing and why we’re doing it. – Russ Harris

When you go through life guided by your values, not only do you gain a sense of vitality and joyfulness, but you also experience that life can be rich, full, and meaningful, even when bad things happen.Russ Harris

Living life by your values is a good example of how we can fulfilment in any job, even one we don’t want, by bringing our values into the workplace. That way, even while we search or train for a better job, we can find satisfaction within the one we have. – Russ Harris

What do you really want? What do you want to stand for in life? What sort of personal qualities do you want to cultivate? How do you want to be toward others? There are 4 domains 1. Relationships 2. Work/Education 3. Leisure 4. Personal Growth/Health.

Feelings are not values. The best way to influence people are through your actions. Treat others as you’d like them to treat you. You can make your job more meaningful by bringing in your values. It is normal to lose touch with your values sometimes. However, the sooner you connect with them the better. Reflect on your answers and your life.

Do not lead someone else’s life. Which values would you choose? ‘I’m just setting myself up for disappointment’ demon. ‘I can’t be bothered right now; I’ll do it later’ demon. ‘But my values conflict with each other’ demon. Find the best balance you can. Act on that value. Sometimes, you will have to focus more time on a certain domain.

If you could somehow listen in your own funeral and the people you most care about were there, what sort of things would you love to hear them say about you? What would you like them to think about the role you played in their lives? – Russ Harris

Now, that you know your values, it’s time to take action. Actions MUST reflect your values. Family; Marriage and other intimate relationships; friendships; employment; education and personal development; Recreation, fun, and leisure; Spirituality; Community Life; Environment and nature; Health and Body. Set meaningful goals. It is very important to write it down. Set an immediate goal. Start with the easy ones. Set short term goals and be specific about it. Set some medium range goals. Set long term goals. Imagine yourself taking effective action. Keep rehearsing, Write an action plan too. Write down your values, your goals, and your action plans. It is not the most important thing to reach the shore, but it is more important to be sailing toward shore.

In the Western world, life is about status and achievement. Sometimes we get so caught up with earning money. When we pursue meaningful goals, life is a lot more rewarding. Appreciate the JOURNEY. For example, a value when deciding to purchase a house could be to provide security for my family. Being rich is a goal. Do the things you like now. Keep asking yourself ‘What’s this goal in the service of? What will it enable me to do that’s truly meaningful?’ Do not walk around with a mask. Do not keep thinking you’re not good enough. Start with short term goals. Get down to your core values. Be more loving and caring towards others. Your values are always with you.

Practice your mindfulness skills whenever you can. Pay attention to the rain, your food etc. Tiny goals can bring great satisfaction too. It’s all about connection. Don’t get too attached to pleasant feelings. They won’t stay forever. The more you apply mindfulness, the strong, calmer and wiser you will become.

Life gives most to those who make the most of what life gives. – Russ Harris

Fusion, Excessive expectations, Avoidance of discomfort, Remoteness from values. Use your defusion skills. Break down your goal into smaller chunks, Then go ahead and do it. ‘What’s the next small, easy step that would bring me a little bit closer to my goal?. Learn the skills that is necessary to achieve your goal. Practice your expansion skills and make room for your new skills. Set and make room for your new goals in life. Connect with your values on a regular basis. Write them down and re-read them on a regular basis. The mind is very good at coming up with reasons for not doing the things we really want to do. Reasons are just thoughts. Thoughts don’t control behavior. Thoughts have the least influence when you defuse them. Being tired is not an excuse for not running. Reasons are excuses. Always turn to your values for help.

Don’t keep putting off important tasks. Willingness doesn’t mean you like, want, enjoy, desire, or approve of something. Willingness means you’ll allow it, make room for it, or let it be in order to do something that you value. Say yes to obstacles and you will learn to overcome them. Practice expansion and defusion. It’s either you are willing or not. There is no in between. You need to take the pain and accept it. My goal is to… The values underlying my goal are… The thoughts feelings, sensations, and urges I’m willing to have in order to achieve this goal are… It would be useful to remind myself that… I can break this goal down into smaller steps, such as…

From time to time, you will fall and hurt yourself. However, please pick yourself up. Commitment means that you will pick yourself up when you fall. Be willing to endure hardship etc. Success in life means living by your values. Do not dwell on your past. Try something different if something isn’t working. Adopt an optimistic outlook of life. Life involves pain sometimes.

Such is the nature of commitment: you can never know in advance whether you will achieve your goals; all you can do is keep moving forward in a valued direction. The future is not in your control. What is in your control is your ability to continue your journey, step by step, learning and growing etc. – Russ Harris

This is the last chapter of the book ;-

Defusion (Recognizing thoughts, images and memories for what they are and do not fight them).

Expansion (Make room for feelings, sensations and urges).

Connection (Connect with your present experience and engage yourself fully in whatever you’re doing).

The Observing Self (It is unchanging and ever-present and is the key to self-awareness).

Values (What sort of person you want to be, what is meaningful to you).

Committed Action (Take effective action in line with your values).

JOE

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Book No – 2 ;

The Art of Work by Jeff Goins

Posted in Business Books by Joe Sehrawat

theartofwork

{ A Proven Path to Discovering What You Were Meant to do }

Finding your calling can be difficult and tiring. It also involves many twists and turns. There is no destination and you will always be on a journey. Everyone is searching for their calling in life. This book also contains messages and examples of people who have made it.

A calling is not some carefully crafted plan. It’s what’s left when the plan goes horribly wrong. – Jeff Goins

There is no guarantee that you will still be alive tomorrow. Therefore, it helps that you can should live life to the fullest. Garrett was a blind cyclist. However, he overcame the odds and became a miracle. Discover what you were born to do. ‘What should you do with your life?’ Learn to find your vocation in life. A vocation is more than a job. You are dealt with a pack of cards and you need to make the most of what you have. It’s what you do with your chances that counts and makes the difference. When you were young, you had big dreams. But somehow along the way, you gave them up. Listen hard to the whisper in your voice. Do not come up with excuses on why you shouldn’t want to do something. Trust your gut but also do things that are uncomfortable and painful. There are 7 themes to someone’s story: 1) Awareness; 2) Apprenticeship; 3) Practice; 4) Discovery; 5) Profession; 6) Mastery; 7) Legacy. Some stages are overlapping in nature. There is a process to finding your life’s work. Do not think of everything that you could have been. Every life is important and significant. Learn to see difficulties as opportunities. Life is full of surprises and you need to react best to them.

Listen to Your Life. Listen to clues and be aware. Larry did a CAT scan and found that he had brain tumour. Larry only lasted 9 months more before he passed on. Always remember to show your appreciation to people you love. Even in your painful moments, life is teaching you a lesson. You must be aware and learn to pay attention. Sometimes, things are not always in your control. Hard work can only get you so far. Some people like to believe that if you must your mind at anything, you can succeed. But getting whatever you want may not make you extremely happy. Life would not be very fun if you were determined in everything you do, but you had no choice over what you could do. How you react to events makes a difference. 87% of the workforce is not engaged in their work. Maybe we should stop looking for happiness. Rather, we should look for meaning or find a reason to be happy. If people have an on-going project, or a job to do, then they have a reason to live another day. See the purpose in your suffering. Do what is required of us. Pain can be a blessing too. Fear can be a motivator. You must know when a good time to listen to it is. Sometimes, if you didn’t do well in a certain aspect, you could strive to help others improve on the situation. Look out for major events or ‘inciting events’ in your life. This big event might just spark you into action. You must believe that you are called to something. You need desire and willingness to begin. Many people know what their dream is, the problem is that they do not dare to admit or say it out. Ask yourself something deeper. There are no guarantees against failure. The key is to keep moving and do not stop. Some of the answers are already inside you. You just need to dig them out. ‘Clarity comes with action’ J. Everyone has a calling, somewhere deep inside them. The unknown is what is keeping us from pursuing action. Listen to your life. Habits of awareness are very important. Learn to listen attentively. Write down the major events of your life on paper. Look out for a recurring theme. Understand that nothing is wasted. Everything that has happened in your past can shape your future. Look below the surface. Learn to watch other people. When in doubt, commit to the path. Do not have a commitment problem. A vocation is something you become. Change takes time. Committing to a wrong thing is better than standing still. This is better as you will still learn from failure. Failure is painful, but it is the best way to learn.

When you are stuck fulfilling an obligation instead of chasing a dream, you aren’t your best self. This is why we find more people moving from one job to the next. They are doing their best to be happy but failing miserably. Most of us have done this at some point, quitting one thing for the promise of something better. And we were disappointed to find that the next job or relationship held the same complications as the one we were escaping. – Jeff Goins

You don’t need some big plan. You just need to be a little dissatisfied. You need to have a vague premonition that the world is not completely right. That’s what awareness is: a sense that something more is possible. – Jeff Goins

If you pay attention to your life and the lessons it can teach you, you won’t feel so lost. Your story will seem less like a series of disjointed events and more like a beautifully complex narrative unfolding before you. – Jeff Goins

Nothing is wasted. No job, no task, no obstacle is useless, if we are willing to see how it can fit into our calling…As you explore your calling, you will be surprised by how your previous experiences are conspiring to lead you in the direction of your life’s work. You just have to listen. – Jeff Goins

You cannot find your calling on your own. It’s a process that involves a team of mentors. And everywhere you look, help is available. – Jeff Goins

Accidental Apprenticeships. You can’t do it alone. An apprentice eventually becomes a professional. Sometimes, apprenticeship takes very long, even up to 10 years. It can take up to 10 years to master a craft. Unfortunately, the apprenticeship model is not popular nowadays. There is no such thing as a self-made man and we are all products of the environment. We need help to grow. Learn to refine and sharpen your skills. Help is instructive, but essential. You cannot master something on your own. Listen to those voices, even if people enter your life willingly. When you give birth, it is important to be able to receive support from your loved ones. A mentor need not stay in your life for long as there would be other mentors that come along the way. It is difficult to find a mentor because most people are self-reliant and think they can do it on their own. A teacher will challenge you to think and act differently. ‘The teacher appears when the student is ready’. You must be willing to look for mentors in unexpected places. How do you find them? Fortune favours the motivated. You just need to keep your eyes open. Interns should be involved in the whole process and they should be able to acknowledge the work that they have done. Pass the skills on to the master and multiply it. In Germany, apprenticeship is very common. The student can work and study at the same time and this helps to add tremendous value. An apprenticeship allows you to obtain guidance from an expert. Opportunities are always available, but you have to look at the right place. Practise the tools available to you. You need to seek out your mentor. Give each other support. You need to be deliberate about the opportunities you seek out. Leap and the net will appear. There is a power in harnessing the community. Your mentor might come from the least likely of places.

Always do more than what is required of you. – George S. Patton

For many of us, there is a fundamental problem with our understanding of our own capabilities. We are often exceeding our own expectations of ourselves. And in spite of the evidence pointing to the contrary, we continue to believe in the myth of talent, that some people are born in the certain way, and we cannot rise above our circumstances and achieve something greater than we’ve ever done before. – Jeff Goins

Painful Practice. Forget about passion. Rather, you should do something you are good at. However, there are singers on American idol which were not very good in the competition but went on to be superstars. Talent is over-rated. Everyone needs intense preparation. The type of practise is very important. Doing your best doesn’t work all the time. Mindset is very important. Do not give up too quickly and still think that you tried your best. Most skills are learned. Deliberate practice is a type of performance that leads to expert performance. The right type of practice is the key. Do not give up when the going gets tough. It is easy to settle for good, but not great. The practice must not be too enjoyable and it has to be difficult. Recognize what you do for fun and what you want to excel at. You must love your work. A spark of inspiration is important. Sometimes, you might be practising even without knowing it. This is known as accidental apprenticeship. Where does motivation come from? It starts with a spark. Inspiration and motivation to practice is important. We all want to make a contribution to the world eventually. William Hung’s video went viral. He even cut an album and achieved fame.

Putting an activity through painful practice is a great way to determine your experience in life. If you can do something when it’s not fun, even when you’re exhausted and bored and want to give up, then it might just be your calling. – Jeff Goins

If you can love what you do, even when it hurts, then you may have more than a hobby. And if you’ve never pushed your talents this far before, if you’ve never tested your skills that much, then you probably haven’t discovered your true vocation. – Jeff Goins

The idea that every person can be whatever he or she wants isn’t always true. Success is more than a matter of hard work; it’s contingent on factors sometimes outside of our control. Where and when you were born can influence what you do. – Jeff Goins

When you see a little hope, doors will open…Never give up, because all you need is a little hope. – Jeff Goins

Building Bridges (The Leap That Wasn’t a Leap). Some people can just relocate to Africa. Sometimes, if you move to a new area, you can make a bigger difference doing what you love. Find what you love and what the world needs. A calling is always messy. There is no guarantee of success, but you just have to take the leap sometimes. Do not trust people when they say they just know when they have found their passion. It is an intentional process. Famous people usually like to admit that they have special powers. Action is more complicated than you think. Listen to the whisper in your heart. Clarity of calling doesn’t come from a moment of epiphany, but rather, a series of deliberate decisions. It is crucial to find a mentor. You have to RESPOND to the call by taking ACTION. Prepare and learn to trust your feelings. Every step will reveal choices you have to make. Learn to take small steps at a time. There is no need to do something audacious. Take small steps. Reality doesn’t conform to what you think life should be. Sometimes, leaping without preparation is not a good idea indeed. It would be good if your project can offer hope to others and change their lives. Before you leap, you need to do your research. Instead of leaping, build a bridge. Not knowing is an excuse. It is normal to feel afraid after leaving your job. If you want a safe journey, continue to do what you do. You MUST KEEP MOVING, even if it is in the wrong direction.

If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again. Then quit. There’s no point in being a damn fool about it. –  W.C. Fields

Pivot Points (Why Failure is Your Friend). You might find your passion by experiencing failure. Even when opportunities have dried up, you can pivot. Sometimes, what you do isn’t what you planned from the start. Pivoting is learning how to deal with difficulties and uncertainties. Successful people learn to deal with failure. Sometimes, you will need to try new stuff. Make the most of any situation that you are thrown in. When you are failing, do not give up and despair. Hardship is an opportunity to succeed. Learn to push through your failure. Focus on what you are meant to do. Life is not a dream. You must transform yourself into a dreamer into a doer. Say ‘let’s’ instead of ‘what if’. Keep moving, even if it’s in a different direction. Stop talking and start doing. You must try.

Albert Einstein worked in a patent office; Benjamin Franklin was forced to flee his hometown; Steve Jobs got kicked out of his own company. We all face times of irrelevance; of falling on our own faces and thinking we have no business doing any of this. But pain is a great teacher and failure is a faithful mentor. – Jeff Goins

Dreams are powerful. They are fuel for change. But by themselves, they do no good. Hanging out in coffee shops and talking about one day being a writer or an activist or an entrepreneur is just about the worst thing you can do. – Jeff Goins

The Portfolio Life (A New Kind of Mastery). Places can also have a big impact on you. Later, I decided that I wanted to be a park ranger. Jody changed career from a financial analyst to be a park ranger. Have a portfolio life. Most self-employed people take up portfolio lives and try different types of tasks. Freelancing is the trend. We are hardwired to take up multiple hobbies and combine them to produce our best work. There are 5 different types of work: 1) fee work; 2) salary work; 3) homework; 4) study work; 5) gift work. Careers do not last that long nowadays. Have a portfolio mindset. Invest your life. Have someone to share your vocation with. Play is important too. Play is what you do to make your work interesting. Your work must have an ultimate purpose. Sensible people reinvent themselves every 10 years. You must do your work well. Masters keep pushing and carrying on. Stop focusing on being famous. Money is a by-product. Understand the true meaning of work. What are you working for? We all have a moral responsibility to ask whether the work is good or not. Work is a means of making people better. Increase in income, to a certain extent, does not make people happy. Flow is an important stage to achieve. Use your gifts in a challenging way. A calling may evolve over time as well.

Don’t search for your calling. Explore, try new things, keep your feet moving. Something will grab you. It will call to you. It is no different from falling in love. You can’t sit on the couch and decide that you are going to marry a certain girl. You fall in love after sharing experiences, joy, challenges, maybe even heartbreak. All of which could not have happened without leaving your couch, being involved, and meeting the one girl you can’t stop thinking about. – Jody

A life isn’t significant except for its impact on other lives. – Jackie Robinson

You don’t have to earn a living for 30 years to turn around and spend the next 30 years giving it away. If significance is what matters to you, you can structure your life and work in a way that allows to live your legacy now. In fact, your giving doesn’t have to be a by-product of your success; it can be the very thing that drives it in the first place. – Jeff Goins

Sometimes, all the little things in life aren’t interruptions to our calling. They are the most important part. – Jeff Goins

Your Magnum Opus (What Legacy Looks Like). Poverty is not objective, but it is more subjective. It is more of a mindset. How do you turn your work into something generous? Work should be both the means and the end to a better life. ‘Do what you love and do it for people who you love.’ Success isn’t about you. Work isn’t just a means of getting a paycheck. Do what you are good at and help others. A job is not just about improving yourself. You are still making a difference even if you don’t do things you like. The small things in life count. A calling is a life well lived. Freedom must have boundaries attached to it. Do not spend time pretending to be someone else. You can also prove your talent through great work. If you do meaningful work, you become yourself. Do not ignore your call. Your calling is not just your vocation, it is your entire life. Legacy should be your goal. Be consumed by the calling. Your work is a support system for your life.

It can be dangerous to have a compulsion to work. Lose yourself in the process. However, this could be a problem if you cannot disassociate yourself from it. Use it in your advantage. How do you not let a passion destroy you? You should work hard, but you need to acknowledge the limitations of life. There will always be unfinished work before you die. But you don’t have to kill yourself over it. At that time, you should try to pass it on to the new generation.

JOE

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Book No – 3 ;

Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl

Posted in Psychology/Philosophy by Joe Sehrawat

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He discovered logotherapy in prison. His entire family and his wife died in the prisons. Only his sister and Viktor survived. He is a psychiatrist by profession. His work is similar to Sigmund Freud (anxiety is caused by conflicting and unconscious motives). Frankl argues that suicide is usually because the sufferer fails to find meaning in his existence. He sought strategies to preserve remnants of one’s life in prison. The theme of existentialism – to live is to suffer, to survive is to find meaning in the suffering. The last of the human freedoms is the ability to choose one’s attitude in a given set of circumstances. Many people are also seeking meaning in their lives. I wanted to show that life holds meaning under all circumstances. However, his initial intention was to publish it anonymously. Although he had a visa to head back to the US during the war, he chose to stay in Vienna to take care of his parents.

Don’t aim at success – the more you aim and make it a target, the more you are going to miss it. For success, like happiness, cannot be pursued; it must ensue, and it only does so as the unintended side-effect of one’s dedication to a cause greater than oneself or as the by-product of one’s surrender to a person other than oneself. – Viktor Frankl

Happiness must happen, and the same holds for success: you have to let it happen by not caring about it. I want you to listen to what your conscience commands of you to do and go on to carry it out to the best of your knowledge. – Viktor Frankl

It will try to describe what everyday life in the concentration camp was. A life of a common prisoner. Names were called and those sick or feeble ones would be taken to another camp, where they would face the gas chambers (90%). Prisoners were identified by number. The man in prison might give biased views of his life in prison. The author tries to avoid any bias. He was not employed as a psychiatrist in the camp. He was number 119104 and most of the time was working on building the railway. Also, he helped to work on a tunnel (which he had coupons to obtain soup for consumption). There are 3 periods to an inmate’s life. 1. The period following his admission; 2. The period when he is well entrenched in camp routine; 3. Period following his release and liberation.

The first phase is usually shock. ‘Delusion of reprieve’ is the moment where a condemned man, just before execution, feels he might get reprieve. The trains and sheds were overcrowded and conditions were poor. An officer would screen people and divide them into whether they could work or whether they could not. He was placed in the group which could do manual work. For 90% of the people on the train, it was death. SS took their watches and allowed them to have a bath. Everything was taken away from them. He was forced to give in a manuscript which contained his life’s work. Their entire bodies were shaven next. They were now completely stark naked. Those who defied orders were whipped. Everyone was coldly curious about what would happen next. Sleeping conditions were poor and it was very cold. Prisoners had to wear the same shirt for half a year. A man is very adaptable and can usually adapt to different conditions. In the first phase, many did not commit suicide. If you want to live, you have to look as fit as possible. Shave with glass if possible. A prisoner who was in a second phase came to talk to them.

The thought of suicide was entertained by nearly everyone, if only for a brief time. It was born of the hopelessness of the situation, the constant danger of death looming over us daily and hourly, and the closeness of the deaths suffered by many of the others. – Viktor Frankl

The newly arrived prisoner experienced the tortures of other most painful emotions, all of which he tries to deaden. First of all, there was his boundless longing for his family and his home. This often could become so acute that he felt himself consumed by longing. Then there was disgust; disgust with all the ugliness which surround him, even in its mere external forms. – Viktor Frankl

In the second phase of prison, one is immune to seeing the torture of others. After a typhus patient died, those around him took his belongings and had no feeling. Everyone suffered from the chronic lack of food. Two hours before, he was talking to the man, who was now dead and being dragged away. Beatings were for sometimes, no reason. Physical pain did not hurt as much the injustice of it all. The guards called them pigs and hit him if he tried to help other comrades. Indignation can rouse the most hardened prisoner. The Capo in his working party liked him. He was suffering from edema where the legs were swollen. The shoes were always wet and prone to frostbite. It was better to be at the front of the marching group as you had to stop less often and later run to catch up. The Capo helped to smuggle him to another workparty. He had to work for foremen now. In the second phase, most people were just happy to be alive. There was no dream as bad as being in the concentration camp. People died in the camps from undernourishment. Sexual urge was absent during times of hunger. There was little sexual perversion. He was moved from Auschwitz to Dachau. Some had lost hope that the war would end. Religion suddenly seemed too powerful. It was possible for a spiritual life to begin. To some, their inner selves were largely intact. He kept thinking about his wife while marching. Love is the ultimate and highest goal to which man can aspire. He resorted to imaginary conversations with his wife. There is meaning in your spiritual being, your inner self. There was no way to find out whether his wife was alive. He kept thinking about in his own home and going about daily chores. One learns to appreciate beauty and art like never before. Sunsets were amazingly beautiful. He felt her presence nearby. Prisoners were allowed to sing during meals. Art was virtually non-existent. Humor was a good tool for self-preservation. Learn to tell each other a humourous story from time to time. Dachau camp had no gas chamber facilities. The air-raid siren saved him because work had to be stopped on a particular day. He drew up a balance sheet of pleasures in prison. A chief doctor brought him away to volunteer and dispense medical advice to typhus patients. He agreed. The warrant officer had to take care of the two doctors assigned. They felt like sheep. The key was not to remain conspicuous to the guards. . There were corpses near him, which did not bother him. He checked the patients pulses and dispensed medicine when necessary. The desperately ill received no medication.

Those who still had a chance to work were not sentimental about seeing others being transported away. He answered questions by the guards truthfully. After he left for another camp, cannibalism broke out in his old camp. It was ridiculous. Everyone was afraid to make decisions. He thought about escape. However, later, he decided not to do it. The camp would be burnt down to the ground the next day. He and his friend were tasked to bury people outside of the barbed wires. At that time, the International Red Cross arrived. However, the red cross delegate said that no one should leave the camp. He and his friend were not loading on to the trucks. A white flag was seen floating in the wind. The Germans had surrendered. Those in the trucks were taken to huts, where they were burned to death. Many prisoners suffered from an inferiority complex. He was forced to keep the hut clean as well. Fate can offer you a chance to meet death in a dignified manner. The tree told a woman that she has eternal life (knowing that she only has a few days to live). It is saddening to not know how long will your stay in prison be. It is only a provisional existence. This form of prisoner cannot live for the future and cannot aim for goals in life. The unemployed worker is similar in this sense. Time-experience was warped in prison. A day would seem like a week without any goal to aim for. There was no future and no goal. The outside life was now like a ghost to a prisoner. Such people would not last long in prison. Rather, it is better to think about the future and grow spiritually and imagine a better place. Few could reach great spiritual heights. One could treat life as a challenge. This was the better route to take. He imagined himself lecturing psychology to a group of students even while in the concentration camp. Some people just refused to move and gave up. The lost of hope and courage can have a deadly effect. Death rates usually peaked at around Christmas as people thought they could get home after Christmas. You need to find a ‘why’ to live. For prisoners, they do not ask for the meaning of life. Face the suffering and don’t be blindly optimistic.

It is a peculiarity of man that he can only live by looking to the future – sub specie aeternitatis. And that in his salvation in the most difficult moments of his existence, although he sometimes has to force his mind to the task. – Viktor Frankl

The prisoner who had lost faith in the future – his future – was doomed. With his loss of belief in the future, he also lost his spiritual hold; he let himself decline and become subject to mental and physical decay. – Viktor Frankl

I told my comrades that human life, under any circumstances, never ceases to have a meaning, and that this infinite meaning of life includes suffering and dying, privation and death. – Viktor Frankl

Apathy, the blunting of the emotions and the feeling that one could not care any more, were the symptoms arising during the second stage of the prisoner’s psychological actions, and which eventually made him insensitive to the daily and hourly beatings. – Viktor Frankl

But my mind clung to my wife’s image, imagining it with an uncanny acuteness. I heard her answering me, saw her smile, her frank and encouraging look. Real or not, her look was then more luminous than the sun which was beginning to rise. – Viktor Frankl

The salvation of man is through love and in love. I understood how a man who has nothing left in this world still may know bliss, be it only for a brief moment, in contemplation of his beloved. – Viktor Frankl

In a last violent protest against the hopelessness of imminent death, I sensed my spirit piercing through the enveloping gloom. I felt it transcend that hopeless, meaningless world, and from somewhere I heard a victorious ‘Yes’ in answer to my question of the existence for an ultimate purpose. – Viktor Frankl

The attempt to develop a sense of humor and to see things in a humorous light is some kind of trick learned while mastering the art of living. – Viktor Frankl

One literally became a number: dead or alive – that was unimportant; the life of a ‘number’ was completely irrelevant. What stood behind that number and that life mattered even less: the fate, the history, the name of the man. – Viktor Frankl

Fundamentally, therefore, any man can, even under such circumstances, decide what shall become of him – mentally and spiritually. He may retain his human dignity even in a concentration camp. – Viktor Frankl

An active life serves the purpose of giving man the opportunity to realize values in creative work, while a passive life of enjoyment affords him the opportunity to obtain fulfilment in experiencing beauty, art or nature. – Viktor Frankl

But not only creativeness and enjoyment are meaningful. If there is a meaning in life at all, then there must be meaning in suffering. Suffering is an ineradicable part of life, even as fate and death. Without suffering and death human life cannot be complete. – Viktor Frankl

When a man finds that it is his destiny to suffer, he will have to accept his suffering as his task; his single and unique task. He will have to acknowledge the fact that even in suffering he is unique and alone in the universe. No one can relieve him of his suffering or suffer in his place. – Viktor Frankl

This is the third phase of prison. This is the psychology of a prisoner after his release. Among the guards, there were a few sadists. These guards were used for sadistic torture. Most of the guards were hardened by the methods used in camps. They were some guards who took pity on them. There are only two races of men: ‘decent’ and ‘indecent’. Once the white flag was raised, the guards changed into their civilian attire and left. The prisoners could not understand what freedom meant. Although they entered a meadow full of flowers, they could not feel joy yet. They had lost their ability to feel pleasure and had to learn it slowly again. This is known as ‘depersonalization.’ The body kept eating after release from prison. The tongue had been loosened. He walked for miles and miles in the meadow. A man still needs spiritual help or he could suffer damage to his moral and spiritual being. This was the moral deformity. Bitterness and disillusionment also results. One could feel that they could take on more suffering. Sometimes, no one awaited their return as their family members had been gassed. There is no need to fear anymore.

Both are found everywhere; they penetrate into all groups of society. No group consists entirely of decent and indecent people. In this sense, no group is “pure race” – and therefore one occasionally found a decent fellow among the camp guards. – Viktor Frankl

Logotherapy focuses on the patient’s future. It is to find meaning in the patient’s living. Logo means meaning. The strive to find meaning should be the primary motivation in life. Will for meaning and not will for happiness. There should be something or someone in your life that you should be willing to die for. It is possible to enter into a state of ‘existential frustration’. To many people, they face an ‘existential vacuum’. This is a complete state of boredom. Many people do not know what to do with their free time. The same happens to old people and pensioners. The meaning of life can differ over time. Logotherapy is not prescriptive but rather allows one to explore what he/she considers meaning. You can discover meaning by one of the three ways. However, the suffering must be unavoidable and cannot be self-inflicted. Can an ape appreciate suffering? Procreation is not the only meaning of life. Never think of your sufferings are in vain. Logotherapy is activistic. He practices something called paradoxical intention. For a patient who suffers from sleeplessness, he will challenge the person ‘try to stay awake as long as possible’. Man is not just a victim of outside circumstances. Man cannot always have the ability to decide and what he will become in the next moment.

Yet one of the main features of human existence is the capacity to rise above such conditions, to grow beyond them. Man is capable of changing the world for the better if possible, and of changing himself for the better if necessary. – Viktor Frankl

A human being is not one thing among others; things determine each other, but man is ultimately self-determining. What he becomes – within the limits of endowment and environment – he has made out of himself. – Viktor Frankl

The search for meaning is unique and specific in that it must and can be fulfilled by him alone; only then does it achieve a significance which will satisfy his own will to meaning. – Viktor Frankl

In the Nazi concentration camps, one could have witnessed that those who knew that there was a task waiting for them were most apt to survive. – Viktor Frankl

What man actually needs is not a tensionless state but rather the striving and struggling for a worthwhile goal, a freely chosen task. What he needs is not the discharge of tension at any cost but the call of a potential meaning waiting to be fulfilled by him. – Viktor Frankl

Everyone has his own specific vocation or mission in life to carry out a concrete assignment which demands fulfilment. Therein cannot be replaced, nor can his life be repeated. Thus, everyone’s task is as unique as is his specific opportunity to implement it. – Viktor Frankl

It denotes the fact that being human always points, and is directed, to something, or someone, other than oneself – be it a meaning to fulfil or another human being to encounter. The more one forgets himself – by giving himself to a cause to serve or another person to love – the more human he is and the more he actualizes himself. – Viktor Frankl

Discover meaning in life in three different ways (1) by creating a work or doing a deed; (2) by experiencing something or encountering someone; (3) by the attitude we take towards unavoidable suffering. – Viktor Frankl

Love is the only way to grasp another human being in the innermost core of his personality. No one can become fully aware of the very essence of another human being unless he loves him. By his love he is enabled to see the essential traits and features in the beloved person; and even more, he sees that which is potential in him, which is not yet actualized but yet ought to be actualized. – Viktor Frankl

In some way, suffering ceases to be suffering at the moment it finds meaning, such as the meaning of a sacrifice. – Viktor Frankl

It is one of the basic tenets of logotherapy that man’s main concern is not to gain pleasure or to avoid pain but rather to see a meaning in his life. That is why man is even ready to suffer, on the condition, to be sure, that his suffering has a meaning. – Viktor Frankl

Tragic optimism is when one is optimistic when experiencing (1) pain; (2) guilt; (3) death. This is trying to make the best of every situation, no matter what the circumstances. This means any of the following. (1) turning suffering into a human achievement and accomplishment; (2) deriving from guilt the opportunity to change oneself for the better; (3) deriving from life’s transitoriness an incentive to take responsible action. One cannot be forced to feel hopeful or overly optimistic. Happiness cannot be pursued. If you try to laugh for no reason, it is known as ‘hyper-intention’. For young people, it was about giving up on their life and resorting to drugs. Most forms of depression result from existential vacuum. People can be united to a challenge where collectively they had to fulfil. How does one go about finding meaning in life?

I view my life as being abundant with meaning and purpose. The attitude that I adopted on that fateful day has become my personal credo for life: I broke my neck, it didn’t break me. I am currently enrolled in my first psychology course in college. I believe that my handicap will only enhance my ability to help others. I know that without the suffering, the growth that I have achieved would have been impossible. – Jerry Long

Young people should envy old people. It is true that the old have no opportunities, no possibilities in the future. But they have more than that. Instead of possibilities in the future, they have realities in the past – the potentialities they have actualized, the meanings they have fulfilled, the values they have realized – and nothing and nobody can ever remove these assets from the past. – Viktor Frankl

Once an individual’s search for a meaning is successful, it not only renders him happy but also gives him the capability to cope with suffering. – Viktor Frankl

Being jobless was equated with being useless, and being useless was equated with a meaningless life. – Viktor Frankl

The moment that these people engaged in volunteer work, their depression disappeared…Man does not live for welfare alone. – Viktor Frankl

JOE

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Book No 4 ;

Minimalism__by Grace Scott

Posted in Self-Improvement by Joe Sehrawat

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{ The Real Truth About Minimalism }

Hello Everyone,

Introduction. Minimalism is about living a less commercial and material life. It is about de-cluttering and then focusing on the aspects of your health like health, relationships, passion growth etc. It is becoming more popular in recent times, especially in areas like art and music. It is now a trendy philosophy. Gear yourself towards a nominal policy and lifestyle. Only keep the stuff which is necessary and this will lead to less stress and more time on your hands. Learn to prioritize. However, one needs to guard against one-upmanship, which is feeling guilty after having purchased an item or compare with others to see who has the least number of pairs of shoes. Will you be resentful towards those you consume a lot? This concept of minimalism is not for everyone. However, be wary of becoming obsessed in de-cluttering. Do realize that it is not completely possible to totally de-clutter.

You must keep the things you most value and remove everything else that distracts you from that value. Being a minimalist means you live intentionally. You know where you are going and are actively planning to go there. – Grace Scott

Thoughts are possessions too. To be a true minimalist, you must free yourself of chaotic and unimportant thoughts, and get rid of stressful emotions. – Grace Scott

As a minimalist you no longer worry about others, you have little emotional attachment to stuff or possessions. You are now a single entity moving toward your definition of happiness. – Grace Scott

Not just another ‘Minimalism’ Guide. Minimalism places experiences and well-being over material things. Avoid spending money on replacing or maintaining items. Minimalism frees you of stress in owning things. However, understand that minimalism is not anti-consumerism. Austereness is an art form which uses monochromatic pallets of primary colours and shapes. Is there a difference from simple living? Yes, simple living integrates uncomplicatedness in every area of your life. It also means contentment and caring for your environment. There are different types of minimalist. One is the creative and resourceful one. Another is the travelling one, the one who backpacks and live in tents. There are also those who are intentionally homeless. This group of people are unlikely to be happy. Some people go for the tiny house movement. There are those who are accidental minimalist, who became one because of force rather than choice. They might have lost a job etc. The professional one is someone who feels superior towards others who own more items. There are also urban, original minimalists. The small holdings minimalists farm the land to feed themselves in a sustainable manner. Small spaces can be well decorated as well. Dogmatic minimalists own 100 items of less and read many books. Do understand that being a minimalist does not make you a better person. It is not about throwing away objects, but also de-cluttering the mind. How do you define what is important in your life? Too many material items drain your bank account. Free you from time commitments which you are not interested in. Learn to reduce your goals and focus on the major ones only. Reduce your debt. Eliminate distractions from your electronic devices and avoid multi-tasking. Spend time to build face-to-face and not just virtual friendships. Understand that minimalist is a lifestyle choice and is not easy to achieve. Free yourself from the consumer culture. Choose thoughts that have meaning and value and get rid of those which cause stress and remorse. Think positively. Stay in the present and do not think excessively about the past, which you have no power to change. Write down your thoughts and talk to yourself. Have an action plan to address your worries. Distract yourself by going for a run etc.

Why is Minimalism so Popular? The core of it is detachment. The heart of it is not just disposing items. 1) Due to financial crisis, people cut back on spending; 2) environmental concerns; 3) People compare less with what their peers own; 4) Personal debt is increasing; 5) There is more to life than just possessions; 6) Technology is making the world a better place; 7) You can store a lot of information in computers; 8) Social media is making the movement popular; 9) Anti-consumerism mindset. Does your life lack meaning even though you are busy? Take the item that you love and break it down to its core purpose. Think about how life will be different without the item. Will you be happy or sad? Minimalist closets are pared down. Live a more intentional life. Head off to the mountains, go for a road trip. If you are a minimalist, there is no need to keep promoting the same lifestyle to others. Some things might have sentimental value to you. Money and possessions can only bring short term happiness. Most people tend to spend more once their income levels rise and they constantly buy new items. Those who spend on others also reveal a higher level of happiness. Know the 80/20 rule and focus your time on the 20%. 20% of lifestyle choices can bring 80% of happiness. Sometimes, having possessions might allow you to share them with others, thus bringing about happiness. Sometimes, happiness also involves planning. The trick is to use your possessions to have yourself happy. Keep them well and be grateful that you own them.

Do you have stuff that you rarely use? Unnecessary clutter sends negative impacts on your life. Box up your duplicates and unused stuff. Be simple. – Grace Scott

To some people, this is the ultimate happiness. The joy of finding a bargain or just something that makes you giddy is happiness. There is nothing wrong with this type of lifestyle. – Grace Scott

By focusing less on the material goods, there is more time to focus on the meaningful – experiences, travel, play time, and relaxation. – Grace Scott

You are unique because of your individual traits, skills, experiences, aptitudes, interests and attitudes. You are not the sum of your possessions, but those possessions can give you joy if you share them with others. – Jolibois

Minimalism is a Double-Edged Sword. Do you always need to keep up with the Jones? Seek experiences over possessions. Being a minimalist can ruin your business. Minimizing means being stingy in your business spending. It can be lethal to your relationships. Realize that you can’t really change someone and it is always smarter to change yourself first. Make it a team effort. Value relationships over a minimalist lifestyle. Our ancestors owned stuff and made tools too. De-cluttering doesn’t really protect the environment as it clutters the landfills. Not purchasing goods means the economy can’t grow. Where should you throw the things that you plan to dispose of? Understand that commercialism is not all bad. Materialism might even hone productivity .Obsession with things can make you hoard items. If you want to be a minimalist, think about how it will affect your family etc. Do not be a minimalist and have a miser attitude towards life. Avoid simply being a trend follower without understanding the trend. Minimalism can drive you crazy. It might mean that you do not plan for the future. You may also lack ambition because strive less in life. Sometimes, your objects can define you and giving them away means you lose a part of you. You may start competing with other minimalist. It also signals a lack of passion in life. You tend to cut corners in everything you do. Life may become boring if you are not careful.

Just remember that unless you totally rid your world of possessions, thoughts and emotions, you will never be a true minimalist. You will just be confused. – Grace Scott

Minimalism is not for Everyone. You must be committed to the lifestyle wholeheartedly. If you the collector type of person, minimalism is not for you. Your items might form a part of you too. If you like fashion, do not be a minimalist. The same applies to photographers, mechanics, children etc. Your spouse may not agree with your minimalist lifestyle too. For the family man, minimalism is not a wise choice. Ensure you spend enough on your children for their developmental needs. You should never be forced to throw away your belongings. Before you throw, make sure you think carefully as you don’t want to throw them away and regret later.

Minimalism vs Frugal Living. Being frugal is being careful with money. Frugal people might still have possessions. In such a lifestyle, luxury is rare and hedonism is unheard of. Avoid lavish and extravagance and cut down on waste. Being thrifty is definitely important. Avoid buying a very expensive phone and also paying for cable subscription

Living a smarter life is not necessarily becoming a minimalist or adopting a frugal lifestyle, it is keeping the things you love, purchasing the things you need, and living a sensible life. – Grace Scott

Minimalism and Your Diet. Have a minimal diet and eat clean. Avoid processed food and add fish, nuts and seeds to your diet. Eliminate bread, pasta, sugar. Learn to fast and drink coffee to replace food. However, do not skip breakfast. Keep yourself hydrated at all times. Take multivitamins and fish oil. Walk at least 15 minutes a day. Use the gym. Sleep is important and get as much rest as you can. Minimize eating portions and eat small and order small dishes only. Avoid snacking, this is very important. Avoid carbonated drinks and only eat when hungry. Stop when you are full.

How to Become a Hybrid Minimalist. Is the way you spend in line with your values and desires and your happiness? Do not become a slave to your possessions. This is very important. The key to everything is moderation. You can still collect things you like and lead a minimalist lifestyle. Find a good job which you like and pays okay. Forced minimalism will not make you happy at all. Live with only what you need. It is better to be a practical minimalist. Or you can even be a balanced materialist. Buy only what you need and take care of what you own. Get rid of toxic relationships from your life. Learn to love your day job. Re-arrange your stuff and get your stuff to friends who might need them more. Sell your things. Avoid buying too many storage containers which lead to clutter. The key is to avoid buying duplicated items. Find a lifestyle which works for you and which you are comfortable with.

Owing less is better than organizing more. – Joshua Becker

Conclusion. Do not de-clutter so much that you rely on others for stuff. Ensure that you have tools for emergency. Never take minimalism in the extreme form. Others might find that you are weird. Cut back in areas which doesn’t matter as much. Ultimately, be happy with your choices and the make the most of them.

JOE

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