Things I’ve learned so far

February 12, 2017
  1. You can’t always get what you want.
  2. Pessimism is a cheap and easy high. Don’t fall for it. Pessimists never accomplish anything, and the satisfaction of saying “I told you it wouldn’t work” turns out to be not very satisfying at all. If the pessimists were right, we’d all be dead.
  3. Luck is real, but it’s a total waste of time to obsess over other people’s good luck, or your own bad luck. Take the circumstances you find yourself in and do the best you can with them.
  4. We all develop habits that feel fun now, but are not very good for us over time. If you find yourself getting bored with a particular bad habit, the tendency is to double down — “this used to be fun, I’ll make it fun again by doing more of it/doing it in a different way.” In fact, that’s the universe telling you it’s time to quit that habit.
  5. You can always try it again someday if you really miss it. But you probably won’t miss it at all.
  6. The new car never gets the gas mileage advertised. It’s always 4 to 10 miles less per gallon.
  7. This type of little petty lie is so common in business and advertising, that most of us do it all the time in our personal lives as well. Break that mold by doing exactly what you say you’re going to do, every time, and people will be pleasantly surprised and think you’re actually way better than you are.
  8. Woody Allen was right when he said 90% of life is just showing up.
  9. The hard part is when you have multiple things you could show up to. That’s why you need to have your priorities straight. Sometimes you’ll choose wrong. Don’t beat yourself up. Just remember for next time.
  10. Spend more time with your kids. They grow up really fast.
  11. Spend more time with your dog. They’ll probably be gone before you.
  12. Turn off the TV and go outside more.
  13. Look at the person you’re with more, and your phone less.
  14. The solution to a cluttered space is never to buy more stuff. That includes stuff that promises to help you organize your cluttered space.
  15. Whatever you want to do, get ready to treat it like a full-time job or you will fail. This particularly goes for art. I used to play in bands. We all thought we were awesome. But none of us ever rehearsed eight hours a day, seven days a week. That’s why you’ve never heard of any of the bands I played in, while Metallica has sold 40 million records.
  16. Raising kids is a full time job. So having kids is like having two jobs at once, which is hard. You’ll feel like you’re working all the time because you are.
  17. If you generally don’t like people, don’t have kids. They’re people. And you have to teach them everything.
  18. If somebody says “it takes a village” as they drop their kids off at your house so they can go take care of their latest crisis, they’re never going to reciprocate by taking care of your kids when you need them.
  19. Avoid anybody who calls themselves “an ideas person.” That means they want somebody else to do the work while they take the credit.
  20. The most important component in job satisfaction is working with great and honorable people. A boring job can make you happy if the people are great. The most exciting job in the world will make you miserable if the people are incompetent or jerks.
  21. Don’t put junk into your body unless you want to feel and look like crap.
  22. Well-tailored clothes can make you look thinner, but you should hit the gym anyway.
  23. If you try sometimes, you just might find, you get what you need.