Wednesday, April 23, 2008
In honor of Stefan Sagmeister's inspiring lecture tonight (and book that I just had to have, it is wonderfully thoughtful), Things I Have Learned In My Life So Far, I decided to come up with a list of 20 of my own learnings. Not at all to belittle his amazing ones, like my favorite, "Complaining is silly, either act or forget", I just was very moved by his way of being able to talk about them like he had really been able to learn from them. As if he had some sort of way of truly having 20/20 hindsight — seeing into his past, perhaps even looking into his future or maybe just being keenly aware of where he is today. I wanted to write (and share) a few things that I've learned thus far in my life too. I think it will be interesting to refer to them in a year or so and see what has changed, or what I'd want to add. Here goes:
- Judging someone is much easier than getting to know them (unfortunately).
- Planning feels better than being spontaneous, but being spontaneous usually makes me happier.
- Just because things look organized, doesn't necessarily mean that they are.
- If you say what you mean you don't have to say as much.
- Being creative doesn't actually mean that you have to create something tangible.
- Having everything in its place doesn't really change things.
- Keeping a journal allows me to think out loud.
- You must own up to your actions.
- White lies are still lies.
- Seeking validation from others doesn't accomplish anything.
- Just because someone agrees with you doesn't mean it is right.
- Trying to be liked by everyone is overwhelming and unnecessary.
- Being a perfectionist is never a good thing (unless you are a surgeon).
- Being positive is hard, but inevitably, worth it.
- Everybody is not out to get me.
- Sometimes you get the short end of the stick; it's what you do with it that makes the difference.
- Change is inevitable; it is best to just go with it and ask questions later.
- Being comfortable in your own skin is a worthy accomplishment.
- Loving someone can hurt you deeply, never loving again can hurt you even more.
And, of course...
- Following someone else ignores your own path.
So, the really cool thing is that you can contribute (designing it like he has done similarly, or not so similarly) your own "mantra" — that is, enter it online via his website. He says that if you actually visually create the sentence it is like you have lived it, learned it, and can then move on from it. I like that I idea. I may just have to try it. It reminds me a little bit of Post Secret, which is also very cathartic.