10 LESSONS FROM LIFE IS SHORT BY PETER ATKINS
1. Life is short. You can, if you work hard and are lucky, get more of almost anything, but you cant get more time. Time only goes one way. The average American has a lifespan of less than 30,000 days. So how you choose to live matters.
2. A better approach is to decide what you want to do and what is most important. Make lists. Then use technology to assist you, versus allowing it to control you. To execute on this concept requires discipline and practice, but anyone can get better at it, and make real progress if they want to.
3. Worrying wastes energy and wastes time; it limits what you can accomplish. I try not to obsess on the past, but to learn from it. I try not to worry about the future, but to prepare for it. And while its difficult sometimes, I try to take pleasure in the moment, even when bad things happen.
4. When you make mistakes along the way, as I have at many points in my life, accept them. Learn from them and move on.
5. The biggest mistake men make when they think about getting married is they assume women wont change; the biggest mistake women make is they assume they can change men.
6. Character is one of the most important things in life. Reputations can be manipulated in the short term, but people tend to get the reputations they deserve over time. Reputations are your personal brand. Theyre influential in how well you do in both your professional and personal lives.
7. Stay active. People are like sharks: if we dont move constantly, well die. This is true both literally and metaphorically. For example, theres some evidence suggesting that older people who keep their minds active have a much lower chance of getting Alzheimers disease. People who retire and mostly eat and lie on the couch, arent likely to live very long -- or be very happy.
8. Almost anyone can be a father or a mother, but being a good parent takes hard work, focus, and a great deal of caring. Despite the obvious sacrifices of time and resources, Ive found being a parent has been the most satisfying and enriching experience Ive ever had. Most parents I know would say similar things.
9. When youre in your 80s, and looking back on your life, I have little doubt youll feel better if you have chosen to give something back. Our time on earth is limited, but you can extend your influence by helping those who will outlive you.
10. Freud said: Love and work are the cornerstones of our humanness. While it may sound simple, if you have close friendships and love your work, the odds are quite high that youll be happy most of the time.