Some things I’ve learned


For almost all of the first part of my life, up to my early 40s, I resisted anything the smacked remotely of self-help or personal development.   I suspect this had to do with the possibility of discovering weaknesses (couldn’t afford to do that!) or maybe infringing on my idea of orthodoxy.

I won’t go into the various ways this changed, but it’s safe to say it started with a 12-step group (I didn’t know what those were for a long time, either) and has since turned into a happy pursuit of learning about living.  We live in a time when we have access to many good thoughts.

I would be the first to tell you, though, that there is no silver bullet for what ails you.  As one of my favorite writers, James Hollis, says, there are no self-help gurus who can rescue you.

Still, there seem to be some commonalities or what I would determine to be clear truths which I’ve come to regard as wisdom:

  • Sleep is important to good health and a good state of mind.
  • It’s bad policy to assume you know the motives for others actions.
  • Unless you’re playing racquetball, it isn’t good to be reactive.
  • It takes more energy to maintain an enemy than to maintain a friendship.
  • Our appreciation for nature is strongly tied to our appreciation for life in general.
  • There are no bad days, just bad moments.
  • Don’t take yourself too seriously.
  • Once we’ve reached adulthood, we are almost entirely responsible for our own happiness.
  • Don’t hold post-mortems over mistakes you’ve made and brood on what you might have done differently.

These are just of few things I try to keep in mind.  I’m thankful for friends who demonstrate many of these principles to me regularly.

I’d love to hear your wisdom!



  1. Suzanne says:

    Yes assume good intentions Sense of humor is key You are responsible for your own happiness. My sister always reminds me you don’t really know what would have happen if you had done things differently.

    My dad always says if someone has 95% give them the other 5.
    Same sister says. Read all the books, listen to all the advice, but then go with your gut.


  2. Rob says:

    “What do they call this valley? They call it simply Wisdom’s Valley. But the oldest maps mark it as ‘The Valley of Humiliation'”. From “The Pilgrim’s Regress” by C.S. Lewis. Fear, pride, self-centeredness are all tools that build walls. Humility is a revolving door that builds a life that tells a real story. We all have a story to tell but we must battle the demons that do not want that story told. Randy, thanks for the thought provoking topics!


    1. admin says:

      I love that quote from C.S. Lewis, Rob, as well as your own shared wisdom. I will meditate on your words today.


  3. Sharmila says:

    Yes to all of the above 🙂
    Plus some of my learnings:

    – We are responsible for our own happiness and its a concious choice we make every single moment.

    – Focussing on the now moment rather than on the past or the future helps to retain the joy and peace

    – You always choose your path – cant blame anything or anyone else

    – There’s learning in each experience of life – no matter how good or bad it seems. I like Buddha’s saying – It shall pass!

    – Keeping an open, cheerful and learning atitude ushers wellbeing and abundance

    – Reserve some time each day to do things you love to do to – Keeps you going


    1. admin says:

      Sharmila, I appreciate your kind and gentle spirit. What you’ve shared is rich, and I get the sense you try to live it out.


  4. Chris Tunstall says:

    The learnings that have impacted me the most:

    1. Progress is much more important than perfection.
    2. Adding value to people’s lives is why we all are here.
    3. If we all laid our problems out on a table, we would take our own back. Gratitude is really important.


    1. admin says:

      Thank you for that, Chris. By keeping those three things in mind, I can make a good contribution to the world today and grow in the process.


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