Summary of “Don’t Know What You Want? Improve These 7 Universal Skills”

What does success look like? What do you want from life? What career do you want?
We think it’s the worst thing in the world if you don’t know what you want to do in life.
One of the biggest thinking errors that I’ve made was that I thought I needed to know what I exactly wanted to do with my life.
The truth is that no one knows what they truly want.
So it’s not important to know exactly what you want to do with your life.
It’s not even realistic to boldly claim “I know what I want!”.
If you can’t decide what direction you want to go in life, that’s automatically your #1 goal in life – to figure out where you want to go.
Persuasion: Learn how to get what you want in an ethical way.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Shortness of Life: Seneca on Busyness and the Art of Living Wide Rather Than Living Long”

It is unsurprising that the best treatment of the subject is also among the oldest: Roman philosopher Seneca’s spectacular 2,000-year-old treatise On the Shortness of Life – a poignant reminder of what we so deeply intuit yet so easily forget and so chronically fail to put into practice.
Life is long enough, and a sufficiently generous amount has been given to us for the highest achievements if it were all well invested.
So it is: we are not given a short life but we make it short, and we are not ill-supplied but wasteful of it Life is long if you know how to use it.
You act like mortals in all that you fear, and like immortals in all that you desire How late it is to begin really to live just when life must end! How stupid to forget our mortality, and put off sensible plans to our fiftieth and sixtieth years, aiming to begin life from a point at which few have arrived!
Living is the least important activity of the preoccupied man; yet there is nothing which is harder to learn Learning how to live takes a whole life, and, which may surprise you more, it takes a whole life to learn how to die.
So you must not think a man has lived long because he has white hair and wrinkles: he has not lived long, just existed long.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, given his own occupation, Seneca points to the study of philosophy as the only worthwhile occupation of the mind and spirit – an invaluable teacher that helps us learn how to inhabit our own selves fully in this “Brief and transient spell” of existence and expands our short lives sideways, so that we may live wide rather than long.
On the Shortness of Life is a sublime read in its pithy totality.

The orginal article.

Summary of “To Be Happier, Focus on What’s Within Your Control”

That’s precisely the power of internalising the Stoic dichotomy of control.
Most of us don’t find ourselves in Stockdale’s predicament, but once you begin paying attention, the dichotomy of control has countless applications to everyday life, and all of them have to do with one crucial move: shifting your goals from external outcomes to internal achievements.
Do you want to win that tennis match? It is outside of your control.
To play the best game you can is under your control.
Do you want your partner to love you? It is outside of your control.
There are plenty of ways you can choose to show your love to your partner – and that is under your control.
Do you want a particular political party to win the election? It is outside of your control But you can choose to engage in political activism, and you can vote.
If you succeed in shifting your goals internally, you will never blame or criticise anyone, and you won’t have a single rival, because what other people do is largely beyond your control and therefore not something to get worked up about.

The orginal article.

Summary of “7 Strange Questions That Help You Find Your Life Purpose”

After some research, I have put together a series of questions to help you figure out for yourself what is important to you and what can add more meaning to your life.
I made them that way because discovering purpose in our lives should be something that’s fun and interesting, not a chore.
Before you are able to be good at something and do something important, you must first suck at something and have no clue what you’re doing.
In order to suck at something and have no clue what you’re doing, you must embarrass yourself in some shape or form, often repeatedly.
Ergo, due to the transitive property of awesomeness, if you avoid anything that could potentially embarrass you, then you will never end up doing something that feels important.
There’s something you want to do, something you think about doing, something you fantasize about doing, yet you don’t do it.
If your reasons are something like, “I can’t start a business because spending time with my kids is more important to me,” or “Playing Starcraft all day would probably interfere with my music, and music is more important to me,” then OK. Sounds good.
Feeling foolish is part of the path to achieving something important, something meaningful.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Why Most People Will Never Be Successful”

Many people with lots of money have horribly unhappy and radically imbalanced lives.
The more evolved you become, the more focused you must be on those few things which matter most.
As Jim Rohn has said, “A lot of people don’t do well simply because they major in minor things.”
The more successful you become - which is balancing the few essential things in your life and removing everything else - the less you can justify low quality.
The more successful you become, the less you can justify low quality.
Because the only things in your life are the things you highly value.
As you come closer to living on a daily basis with your values and ideals, amazing things start to happen.
To repeat Jim Rohn, “A lot of people don’t do well simply because they major in minor things.” Said another way, most people are caught in the thick of thin things.

The orginal article.

Summary of “You Make Or Break Your Life Between 5-7 AM”

How you spend your morning determines your success in life.
How you spend your morning is the difference between making tens of millions of dollars and making less than 100 grand.
“I frequently say to missionaries in the field, ‘You make or break your mission every morning of your life. You tell me how those morning hours go until you are on the street in your mission, whatever time it is; you tell me how those hours go, and I will tell you how your day will go, I will tell you how your month will go, I will tell you how your year will go and how your mission and your life will go.'” You Make Or Break Your Life Between 5 and 7 AM”Lose an hour in the morning, and you will spend all day looking for it.” - Richard WhatelyIf you lose an hour in your morning, you’ll spend your whole day looking for it.
If you spend your day looking for the most important time you’ve lost, you’ll be spending your whole life on a lower-level path than you could have had.If you don’t prioritize and maximize your morning hours, you’ll always be left wondering what your life could have been.
Without the morning routine, you will be far less equipped to deal with the challenges of life.
I dare you to take on the biggest growth, challenges, and risks of your life without having practices for clarity, creativity, and productivity DAILY.If you’re someone who dislikes or avoids evening and morning routines, then you simply are avoiding the greatest growth of your life.
What Do You Do Between 5 and 7 AM?If you could give yourself two hours, every morning, solely dedicated to learning, thinking, planning, meditating, praying, and writing in your journal, your life would change.
If you read good books every morning, visualize and strategize your goals, and write your insights in your journal, you’ll have an amazing life.

The orginal article.

Summary of “How Do People Communicate Before Death?”

Many people die in such silence, particularly if they have advanced dementia or Alzheimer’s that robbed them of language years earlier.
From a doctor I heard that people often say, “Oh fuck, oh fuck.” Often it’s the names of wives, husbands, children.
“A nurse from the hospice told me that the last words of dying men often resembled each other,” wrote Hajo Schumacher in a September essay in Der Spiegel.
There are no descriptions of the basics of last words or last interactions in the scientific literature.
Delirium strikes people of all ages after surgery and is also common at the end of life, a frequent sign of dehydration and over-sedation.
Delirium is so frequent then, wrote the New Zealand psychiatrist Sandy McLeod, that “It may even be regarded as exceptional for patients to remain mentally clear throughout the final stages of malignant illness.” About half of people who recover from postoperative delirium recall the disorienting, fearful experience.
In a Swedish study, one patient recalled that “I certainly was somewhat tired after the operation and everything and I did not know where I was. I thought it became like misty, in some way the outlines were sort of fuzzy.” How many people are in a similar state as they approach death? We can only guess.
If you wanted to know how language ends in the dying, there’s next to nothing to look up, only firsthand knowledge gained painfully.

The orginal article.

Summary of “How the Idea of Hell Has Shaped the Way We Think”

The further from childhood I get, the fewer people I meet who worry about-or even believe in-what Scott G. Bruce, the editor of a new and quite terrifying compilation, “The Penguin Book of Hell,” calls the “Punitive afterlife.” But the Hell here on earth-the one that the preachers promised would lose in the end-hasn’t gone anywhere.
From antiquity forward, our stories about Hell often feature some prematurely damned hero-Orpheus or Aeneas, the three Hebrew boys in the furnace or Jesus during his three days dead, the innocent prisoner or the untried detainee-passing through the state of hopelessness, then coming back, blinking, into the light.
The vision is also, perhaps more harrowingly, characteristic of how the idea of Hell has shaped perceptions of our own time.
In the “Summa Theologica,” his grand synthesis of Aristotelian philosophy and Christian teaching, he defended the doctrine of Hell and insisted that we should think of it as a benefit, not a bug.
Not only does Hell exist, Aquinas reasoned, but those blessed souls who make it to Heaven must be able, by some miracle of cosmic surveillance-the worst and longest season of “Big Brother”-to see and delight in the fate of Hell’s inhabitants.
Surrounded by the loveliness of the new creation, he feels his internal awfulness all the more: “Which way I fly is Hell; myself am Hell; / And in the lowest deep a lower deep / Still threat’ning to devour me opens wide, / To which the Hell I suffer seems a Heav’n.” He and Hell belong to each other; where he goes, torture goes, too.
Mostly I come back to Dorothy Day’s questions: Why are some people caught and not others? Why do the “Least of these” keep catching hell while the richest and most powerful slide through life unaccosted and unaccountable, leaving God knows what in their wake? There’s a cruel paradox at work: the more secular our representations of Hell become, the more the poor and rejected and otherwise undesirable tend to populate it.
Grotesque, the child-detainment centers at the U.S.-Mexico border are not Hell but the reason for a Hell to exist, so that those responsible for them can one day get their deserts.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Want to transform your life? Stop chasing perfection”

For one thing, it’s by no means clear that it’s possible to transform yourself through the simple application of individual willpower: wherever you come down on nature and nurture, it’s undeniable that we owe much of our success or failure in life to our circumstances, and to luck.
At the core of Gawdat’s “Formula for happiness” is the venerable observation that happiness equals reality minus expectations: in order to feel distress because your life is lacking something, you must first have had some expectation of attaining that thing.
Seeing the truth of the formula acts as a kind of sieve, allowing you to separate the handful of things you genuinely want from life from those you’ve been socialised into believing you should want.
One of the most rigorous articulations of the new mood of acceptance is Happy Ever After: Escaping the Myth of the Perfect Life by Paul Dolan, a professor of behavioural science at the LSE and, the publicity material explains, “An internationally renowned expert in human behaviour and happiness”.
Apart from anything else, our narratives about the perfect life aren’t just beliefs we can choose to jettison by a mere act of will, after reading about research that refutes them.
Though it’s a good thing that we talk so much more openly today about mental illness, one perverse consequence is that it can actually be easier to admit to a serious depression than to a milder, pervasive sense of disappointment in life.
Much of the bothersomeness of daily life arises not from circumstances themselves, but from the insistence that they ought to be other than they are.
Most of us are complicit: we chase unattainable fantasies of self‑reinvention, rather than confronting reality, at least in part because life is easier that way.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Why It’s So Hard to Stick to Your Goals”

I’d like to argue that the vast majority of our struggles in life come down to one simple problem: our actions don’t match our intentions.
Instead, our projects flop and goals fail because we had some intention to do something, and we didn’t follow-up.
It’s not enough to set goals, intentions or plans.
If not having intentions is the first cause of failure, the second is imagining an idealized superhero is actually going to act on your plans.
So you’d better align your intentions with the kinds of things you can actually follow.
The second part is that your intentions need to be engineered so that you can actually act on them.
While you’re working, you see how your intentions are working out, you also look at how well you’re following through on your intentions, and you adjust both to make progress.
How can you make sure you act on your intentions? How can you understand yourself deeply so that you can overcome your past struggles and failures? How do you design the systems in your life so that achievement becomes automatic?

The orginal article.