Looking for a little clarity in your life? Want to find some perspective to help you make decisions and navigate situations?
Here are 27 paradoxes that could help give you some insight into your life and your choices to help you be a better person.
1) The best things in life can’t be bought
Healthy, happiness, family, friends: you can’t put a price on these things. Stop chasing material possessions in search of happiness. Everything you need is right in front of you.
2) Choice paralyzes us
When we are faced with too many options, we’ll often choose the wrong one or make a choice just to be done with it. Make a decision and move forward.
3) When you stop looking for happiness, you find it
Sometimes everything you need to be happy is right in front of you…all you have to do is just open your eyes.
4) When you stop trying to find solutions, you find them
Stop wracking your brain and let it be with its own thoughts for a while. Before you know it, you’ll find the solution is right in front of you.
5) You don’t know what you have until it’s gone
This is true of everything in life: you favorite pair of jeans, an ice cream cone that fell on the ground, you precious granny Sue. All things have an expiry date so enjoy them while you can.
6) The more you do, the less you get done
Taking on too much at once is counterproductive even for a skilled multitasker. Focus on one thing at a time and you’ll get more done in a day, week, and a year.
7) What goes around comes around
You’ll get out of life what you put into it, so don’t sit idle and let life pass you by. Be nice to people and yourself. Otherwise, it could come back to bite you from behind.
8) The more control you want, the less you have
Helplessness is a horrible feeling, but sometimes we have to let go of things to gain perspective on how to move forward. Stop trying to control everyone and everything.
9) Fiction can change reality
Things that aren’t real or that we can’t prove are real can bring us a great deal of joy: stories that aren’t true but make us feel good, art that has no impact on life except to provide joy and faith. You can’t see it but you feel it.
10) We’re the same, but different
Everyone is different but everyone wants the same things: to be loved, safe, and happy. Respect how people go about getting those things in life and we’ll all be better off.
11) The more you sleep, the more tired you’ll be
Sure, this one isn’t fair but it’s true. Get up with the sun and go to bed with the birds and you’ll be happier and well-rested for it.
12) You can only change when you accept who you are
When you accept yourself as you are, you are better prepared to take on the responsibilities and work associated with change. It comes from a place of love and not hate.
13) The more you run from a problem the bigger it will be
Fate always catches up with us. So if you owe your taxes, pay them. If you haven’t called your mom in years, call her. Don’t ignore what needs fixing.
14) Question what you think you know
The world tells us to question what we see, but not what we think we know. We can change our own minds if we question what is in them.
15) Eat more, lose more
What a concept: eat better foods with more nutrients and minerals and good for you than fats, and you can lose more weight than a diet of lettuce and tomato.
16) Improve commutes with fewer roads
Reducing choice leads to more effective movements in life and on the road.
17) When you stop looking for love, you find it
As with most things in life, what you need is usually right in front of you. Enjoy life and love will come your way.
18) A watched pot never boils
Things take longer when you wait. Stop waiting and start living.
19) Talk less, say more
People who talk a lot usually don’t have much to say. Speak when you have something important to say.
20) Don’t cry over spilled milk
I mean, you could, but really, there’s no going back.
21) Social media disconnects from each other
It’s not really social, is it? What is social about going through your phone and looking at people’s photos?
Social media is a good way to connect with friends from around the world, but for those who are close to you, it often pulls you apart more than it pulls you together.
22) Solitude can make you more social
Solitude allows you to recharge your batteries and get to know yourself, which in turn allows you to become more sociable. If you’re comfortable with yourself, you’ll be more comfortable with others.
23) The only constant change
You can’t predict the future but if there’s one thing you know for certain it’s this: Things will change. The change will happen no matter what you think about it.
You can either choose to accept it or deny that it’s happening and fall behind.
24) The only certainty is uncertainty
Yes, the future will change, but whatever happens from now is impossible to predict.
We can make assumptions but we will never 100% correct. The future is uncertain and all you can do is take the best action possible right now.
25) Failure leads to success
We try to avoid failing as much as we can, but if we want to be successful, it is absolutely necessary. Success comes from learning and improvement, which comes from failure. The two are intertwined.
26) Avoiding fear will impact your enjoyment of life
Fear is not a fun emotion to deal with, but if we avoid it our whole, we’ll never leave our comfort zones and grow as a person.
If you want to live a fulfilling life, you need to be comfortable feeling fear and acting anyway.
27) The more you learn, the more you realize how little you know
You can never know everything. The world is too complex. No matter how much you know, there is always more to learn.
Putting yourself first
What’s your number one goal at the moment?
Is it to buy that car you’ve been saving up for?
To finally start that side-hustle that’ll hopefully help you quit your 9-5 one day?
Or to take the leap and finally ask your partner to move in?
Whatever your goals are, there’s a hidden trap in how you set them.
The trap is this:
You’ll only experience genuine life satisfaction when your goals are aligned with your values.
Because when values and goals are aligned, you enjoy the journey much more. And this makes achieving your goals much more likely.
If you find it hard to articulate your deeper life values, I suggest downloading the free values exercise by career coach Jeanette Brown.
It takes only a couple of minutes and will reveal a number of powerful insights about your underlying values.
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