If you had to boil down your life’s guiding principles to two sentences… What would they be?
…Only two sentences? …To guide you through life?
…Tough. I know.
Well, during a conversation with one of my students, Aaron, I discovered two sentences that were intricately tied to how he lived his life which impacted me deeply and compelled me to investigate further.
These two sentences came from one of Aaron’s mentors, Melvin Scott—a man he crossed paths with at a gym when he was a young teenager.
The influence Melvin had on Aaron and the impact those two sentences have had on his life ever since is unquestionable and speaks to the power of two key principles: Continue reading
“Motivation is so important. In fact all human action can be seen in terms of movement, and the mover behind all actions is one’s motivation. If you develop a pure and sincere motivation, if you are motivated by a wish to help on the basis of kindness, compassion, and respect, then you can carry on any kind of work, in any field, and function more effectively with less fear or worry, not being afraid of what others think or whether you ultimately will be successful in reaching your goal. Even if you fail to achieve your goal, you can feel good about having made the effort. But with a bad motivation, people can praise you or you can achieve goals, but you still will not be happy.” ~ Dalai Lama, The Art of Happiness
“If one comes across a person who has been shot by an arrow, one does not spend time wondering about where the arrow came from, or the caste of the individual who shot it, or analyzing what type of wood the shaft is made of, or the manner in which the arrowhead was fashioned. Rather, one should focus on immediately pulling out the arrow.” ~ Shakyamuni, the Buddha, via The Art of Happiness
“There is no guarantee that tomorrow at this time we will be here. But still we are working for that purely on the basis of hope. So, we need to make the best use of our time. I believe that the proper utilization of time is this: if you can, serve other people, other sentient beings. If not, at least refrain from harming them. I think that is the whole basis of my philosophy.” ~ Dalai Lama, The Art of Happiness
“There is an inextricable link between one’s personal happiness and kindness, compassion, and caring for others. And this is a two-way-street: increased happiness leads to greater compassion, and increased compassion leads to greater happiness. In other words, studies have found not only that happier people tend to be more caring and more willing to reach out and help others, but that by deliberately cultivating greater kindness and compassion, a person will experience increased happiness.” ~ Howard Cutler, The Art of Happiness
“When we help others, the focus of our mind assumes a broader horizon within which we are able to see our own petty problems in a more realistic proportion. What previously appeared to be daunting and unbearable, which is what often makes our problems so overwhelming, tends to lose its intensity.” ~ Dalai Lama, The Art of Happiness
“The quality of your life will come down to the quality of your contribution.” ~ Robin S. Sharma, The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari
“Success, like happiness, cannot be pursued. It must ensue. And it only does so as the unintended side effect of one’s personal dedication to a cause greater than oneself.” ~ Victor Frankl
One day, when I was a freshman in high school, I saw a kid from my class was walking home from school. His name was Kyle. It looked like he was carrying all of his books. I thought to myself, “Why would anyone bring home all his books on a Friday? He must really be a nerd.”
I had quite a weekend planned (parties and a football game with my friends tomorrow afternoon), so I shrugged my shoulders and went on. As I was walking, I saw a bunch of kids running toward him. They ran at him, knocking all his books out of his arms and tripping him so he landed in the dirt. His glasses went flying, and I saw them land in the grass about ten feet from him.
He looked up and I saw this terrible sadness in his eyes. My heart went out to him. So, I jogged over to him and as he crawled around looking for his glasses, and I saw a tear in his eye. As I handed him his glasses, I said, “Those guys are jerks. They really should get lives.”