Leo Tolstoy was something of rigid, draconian, self-flagellating type.
He wrote these rules of life when he was 18:
- Get up early (five o’clock)
- Go to bed early (nine to ten o’clock)
- Eat little and avoid sweets
- Try to do everything by yourself
- Have a goal for your whole life, a goal for one section of your life, a goal for a shorter period and a goal for the year; a goal for every month, a goal for every week, a goal for every day, a goal for every hour and for evry minute, and sacrifice the lesser goal to the greater
- Keep away from women
- Kill desire by work
- Be good, but try to let no one know it
- Always live less expensively than you might
- Change nothing in your style of living even if you become ten times richer
(Thank you to Gretchen at The Happiness Project)
I like many of them. Not so much #6! I like the bottom three specifically. The bottom two even more so. I think living as simply as you can, regardless of income and wealth, is a rich way to live. Expensive stuff is annoying and complicated. And wanting “stuff”, reaching out for “things” externally is distracting and a recipe for an endless yearning that gnaws at you relentlessly. Upgrading never satisfies.
Some of my rules of life are:
- Rest daily
- Eat green things as often as you can
- Exercise in the morning, for just 20 minutes, every day
- Exercise to feel fresh
- Buy less stuff; before you head to a mall, ask yourself whether you can put off buying whatever it is for another week. And then another… And go to the beach instead.
- Listen to people fully. Practice it at every interaction.
- Find what makes you different and nurture this side of yourself…grow it, flesh it out.
- Sit with your heart space every day. Even just for five minutes
- Read other people’s life stories
- Listen to messages when they come in threes (as warnings or as suggestions to try something)
Got any good ones to add?