It is so easy to realize life’s difficulties would have been far fewer and successes more frequent applying life’s lessons to my daily life 30 years earlier.
I often think “if I know then what I know now life would have been far easier.” Obviously that is not going to happen but the critical lesson is to continue growing, learning and applying the daily “lessons” to become a better more fulfilled person.
Nevertheless if you can learn from my mistakes and life’s lessons they will accelerate your learning curve. These lessons are what I view as important but hopefully one or several will be seen as relevant that will improve your life.
An Open Mind
First, I wish I had more of an open mind to realize I could have learned from everyone and all my own experiences. Your best lessons in life come from what you view as mistakes or failures. They are not really mistakes because you can use those moments as teaching opportunities.
Listening Is Critical
My second insight was that the more I listened the more I learned.
Much of my talking was my effort to impress or fill socially uncomfortable pauses. Listening is more productive and effective in developing better relationships.
Sleep Time is an Investment
Next I wish I had slept closer to the optimal 7 hours every night. Although that was not always possible research has shown that 7-8 hours consistently yields better focus, higher energy and a healthier individual especially with better brain function.
Water: The Indispensable Nutrient
Because we are composed of 70% water remaining hydrated is critical to optimal health. I tell all my patients and clients to drink lots of water as that was a critical lesson I learned.
The Secret of Nutrition
The importance of nutrition has been debated for years. We now realize that the healthiest nutrition is to minimize carbohydrates and most forms of sugar. Like most I was a committed consumer (probably a bit addicted to sugar and carbohydrates) of carbohydrates. If I hadn’t been so physically active, consuming so many carbohydrates would have been problematic but for the average person high consumption of carbohydrates and sugars creates many illnesses.
The lesson here is that healthy diets consist of a high % of proteins and healthy fats with fewer carbohydrates and sugars.
Stress: The Silent Killer
A critical lesson that takes many years to understand is how to decrease stress and not allow most situations or people to become stressful. Many circumstances that potentially create stress are best resolved without stress. A simple, short and powerful book that illustrates how to handle stress in a healthy manner is Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff; Everything is the Small Stuff.
Reading is One of the True Gems in Life
Finally I wish I had read more fiction growing up. Most books contain invaluable lessons. Unfortunately younger generations are reading less yet much learning and personal growth is derived from reading. I discovered a huge life enhancement each book I read. Reading (fiction or non-fiction) is one of the true treasures in life. Get in the habit of reading for a vastly improved life.
I sincerely hope these “lessons” which took years (unbelievable since they are so simple) for me to learn and assimilate will not take 30 years to benefit your life. Learn and benefit from your own lessons but take my life’s lessons and begin with a great head start.