12 Rules for Life – Jordan B. Peterson
The 12 Rules of Life is a guide for anyone who craves for order, stability, and a higher sense of purpose in life. It is a set of rules to adhere to for social, mental, and spiritual well-being.
RULE 1: Stand up straight with your shoulders back
Your posture can determine your societal status. If you appear to look weak, tired, or sloppy, you’ll be seen and treated as such. You’ll most likely be exploited, mistreated, or ripped off. Appear confident and you’ll be treated as a winner.
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It’ll boost your morale and make you feel less anxious about how you may appear to others.
RULE 2: Treat yourself like someone you are responsible for helping
You are important to other people, as much as to yourself. Consider the people who might depend on you, this might be your friends, family, employees, and even your pet(s). Because you have people who depend on you, you are, therefore, expected to take care of, help, and be good to yourself.
RULE 3: Make friends with people who want the best for you
Don’t befriend someone because you think you can change his/her life. You might think you’re a strong, generous, well-put-together person who wants to do the right thing but you’ll end up doing more harm to yourself. Make friends with people who are already where you want to be.
RULE 6: Set your house in perfect order before you criticize the world
Before blaming the world for why it is what it is today ask yourself how you’ve contributed to it being a better place. If you cannot make your household clean, then don’t blame the community for being filthy. Always look within yourself before judging others for what they are.
RULE 7: Pursue what is meaningful (not what is expedient)
Pursuing things that give us more meaning provides us with a sense of fulfillment and a higher purpose. Do things that make you feel good and elevated. The sense of fulfillment you feel when the tree you planted five years ago is now home to over a hundred birds or a shade for the community.
That’s the kind of feeling you should strive for. It makes your life worth living.
RULE 8: Tell the truth—or, at least, don’t lie
We’ve all lied at least once in our lives and felt guilt for doing so. The problem with telling lies is how quickly it becomes a habit. It’s so easy to get out of a difficult situation with just a lie but the effects can be exponential. A single lie can make you lose your job, or friends or break your relationship with loved ones. Tell the truth always and don’t speak when you’re not sure.
RULE 9: Assume that the person you are listening to might know something you don’t
Listening is rarely done these days. If you’re going to listen to someone, at least listen attentively. Everyone needs to be heard and it’s how we think. Listening effectively, allows the person speaking to open up and express his/her thinking process, which can lead to some of the most amazing and oddly interesting conversations.
RULE 10: Be precise in your speech
Goals, when clarified become more attainable. Problems, when specified become easier to deal with. Being precise in your speech makes you sound less phoney, more trustworthy, and more honest. When engaged in or starting a conversation, try narrowing it down to a specific topic as it brings up unique insights. Rather than a general topic that might seem mundane and uninteresting to talk about.
RULE 11: Do not bother children when they are skateboarding
Danger is part of growing. Falling is not always as awful as it sounds, sometimes it might just be an opportunity for us to progress into more resilient beings. There’s always a risk involved in growth, and the path to mastery in any area of expertise is never safe as there will be hurdles and stumbling blocks. Let people be who they are, don’t try to change them. If there’s anyone you should change the most, it’s YOU.
RULE 12: Pet a cat when you encounter one on the street.
Take advantage of the little opportunities you find anywhere and everywhere. Life is tough, and that’s just how it is for everyone. Accept that suffering is an undeniable part of reality and life. Make the most of the happiness found in doing the little things.