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39 Ways to Live and Not Merely Exist

39 Ways to Live and Not Merely Exist

“The proper function of man is to live – not to exist.” – Jack London

Too typically we undergo life on autopilot, going via the motions and having every day move just like the one earlier than it. That’s high quality and snug however not till you’ve gotten gone by way of one other yr with out having achieved something or having actually lived life. Or when you will have reached previous age and appeared again on life with regrets.

Truthfully, none of that’s superb.

If you need to really stay life, to actually expertise it, to take pleasure in it to the fullest, as an alternative of barely scraping by and solely dwelling a lifetime of existence, you want to discover methods to break away from the mould and drink from life.

What follows is only a record of concepts that I hope are helpful reminders on how to stay life to its fullest. All of us want reminders typically. In the event you discover this handy, print it out, and begin utilizing it. As we speak.


Fall in love, in case you aren’t already. When you have, fall in love together with your associate once more. Abandon warning and let your coronary heart be damaged. Love relations, pals, anyone- it doesn’t have to be romantic love. Love all of humanity, one individual at a time.

2Get outdoors

Don’t let your self be shut indoors. Exit when it’s raining. Stroll on the seashore or hike via the woods. Swim in a freezing lake and bask within the solar. Play sports activities or stroll barefoot by way of grass. Pay shut consideration to nature.

3Savor meals

Don’t simply eat your meals, however actually take pleasure in it. Really feel the feel and the bursts of flavors. Savor each chew. In case you restrict your consumption of sweets, it’s going to make the small treats you give your self (berries or darkish chocolate are my favorites) much more fulfilling. And once you do have them, actually, actually savor them slowly.

4Create a morning ritual

Wake early and greet the day. Watch the solar rise. Out loud, inform your self that you’ll not waste this present day which is a present. You’ll be compassionate to your fellow human beings, and reside each second to its fullest. Stretch, meditate or train as a part of your ritual. Take pleasure in some espresso.

5Take possibilities

We frequently stay our lives too cautiously, apprehensive about what may go fallacious. Be daring and danger all of it. Give up your job and begin a enterprise for your self. Go up to that woman you’ve appreciated for a very long time and ask her out. What do you could have to lose?

6Follow pleasure

Attempt to discover the issues in life that excite you, and then go after them. Make life one thrilling journey after one other.

7Find your ardour

Comparable to the above tip, this one asks you to discover your calling. Make your dwelling by doing the factor you’re keen on to do. First, take into consideration what you actually love to do. There could also be many issues. Discover out how one can make a dwelling doing it. It might be troublesome, however you solely stay as soon as.

8Get out of your cubicle

Do you sit all day in entrance of pc, shuffling papers, taking telephone calls, and chatting on the Web? Don’t waste your days like this. Break away from the cubicle surroundings, and do your work on a laptop computer in a espresso store, on a ship or in a log cabin. This will require a change of jobs or turning into a freelancer. It’s value it.

9Turn off the TV

What number of hours will we waste away in entrance of the boob tube? What number of hours do we’ve got to stay? Do the maths, then unplug the TV. Solely plug it again in when you’ve got a DVD of a film you’re keen on. In any other case, maintain it off and discover different stuff to do. Don’t know what to do? Learn additional.

10Draw back from Web

You’re studying one thing on the Web proper now. And except this text, it’s simply losing away of your valuable time. You can’t get these minutes again. Unplug the Web, then get out of your workplace or home proper now. Go and do one thing.


Positive, you need to journey some day. Perhaps when you’ve gotten trip time or if you’re older. However why wait?

Discover a method to make a journey, if not this month, then someday quickly. Chances are you’ll want to promote your automotive or cease your cable invoice and cease consuming out to do it, however make it occur. You’re too younger to not see the world. If want be, discover a method to make a dwelling by freelancing, then work when you journey. Solely work an hour or two a day. Don’t examine e-mail however as soon as every week. Then, use the remainder of the time to see the world.

See Additionally: 5 Causes Why Touring Solo Is A Quick Method to Private Improvement

12Rediscover what’s essential

Take an hour and make an inventory of the whole lot that’s necessary to you. Add to it every part that you really want to do in life. Now, minimize that listing down to four to 5 things- simply crucial issues in your life.

That is your core listing. Focus your life on this stuff and find time for them.

13Remove every thing else

What’s happening in your life that’s not on that brief listing? All that stuff is losing your time, pulling your consideration from what’s necessary. As a lot as attainable, simplify your life by eliminating the stuff that’s not in your brief listing.


Get off the sofa and go for a stroll. Ultimately, attempt operating or do some push ups and crunches. Swim, bike, row or go for a hike. No matter you do, get lively and you’ll like it. Life can be extra alive.

15Be constructive

Study to acknowledge the adverse ideas you will have. These are the self-doubts, the criticisms of others, the complaints, the explanations you possibly can’t do one thing. Then, cease your self when you’ve got these ideas and exchange them with constructive ones.

16Open your coronary heart

Is your coronary heart a closed bundle of scar tissues? Study to open it. Have it prepared to obtain love and to give love unconditionally. If in case you have an issue with this, speak to somebody about it.

17Kiss within the rain

Seize the second and be romantic. Raining outdoors? Seize your lover and give her a passionate kiss. Driving house? Cease the automotive and decide some wildflowers. Ship her a love notice. Gown attractive for him.

18Face your fears

What are you most afraid of? What’s holding you again?

No matter it’s, acknowledge it and face it. Do what you’re most afraid of. Solely by dealing with our fears can we be freed from them.

19If you endure, endure

Life isn’t all about enjoyable and video games. Struggling is an inevitable a part of life.

We lose our jobs and we lose our lovers. We lose our pets and we get bodily injured or sick.

Study to really feel the ache intensely and actually grieve. This is part of life, so actually really feel the ache. And whenever you’re carried out, transfer on, and discover pleasure.


Life strikes alongside at such a speedy tempo today. It’s not wholesome and it’s not conducive to dwelling. Follow doing every little thing slowly- from consuming to strolling to driving to working to studying. Take pleasure in what you do. Study to transfer at a snail’s tempo.

21Contact humanity

Get out of your home and manicured neighborhoods and discover those that stay in worse circumstances. Meet them, speak to them, perceive them. You’ll be able to even stay amongst them and be one in every of them. Hand over your materialistic way of life.


Assist at homeless soup kitchens. Study compassion and study to assist ease the struggling of others. Assist the sick, these with disabilities, and those that are dying.

See Additionally: The Energy of Volunteering

23Play with youngsters

Youngsters, greater than anybody else, understand how to stay. They expertise every little thing within the second absolutely. Once they get harm, they actually cry. Once they play, they actually have enjoyable. Study from them, as an alternative of considering you understand a lot greater than them. Play with them and study to be joyful like them.

24Speak to previous individuals

There isn’t a one wiser, extra skilled, and extra discovered than those that have lived by means of life. They will inform you superb tales, offer you recommendation on making a wedding final or staying out of debt. You’ll be able to study from them and keep away from their errors. They’re the knowledge of our society. Benefit from their existence whereas they’re nonetheless round.

25Study new expertise

Always enhance your self as an alternative of standing nonetheless, not since you’re so imperfect now, however as a result of it’s gratifying and satisfying. You must settle for your self as you’re and study to love who you’re. Nevertheless, don’t cease making an attempt to enhance as a result of the method of enchancment is life itself.

26Discover spirituality

For some, this implies discovering God, Jesus, Allah or Buddha. For some, this implies turning into in tune with the spirits of our ancestors or with nature. Others contemplate it as internal power. No matter spirituality means for you, rediscover it and its energy.

27Take mini-retirements

Don’t depart the enjoyment of retirement till you’re too previous to take pleasure in it. Do it now when you’re nonetheless younger. It makes working that rather more value it. Discover methods to take a yr off each few years. Save up, promote your own home, your possessions, and journey. Live merely, however reside with out having to work. Take pleasure in life, then return to work and save up sufficient cash to do it once more in a few years.

28Do nothing

Regardless of the tip above that we should always discover pleasure, there’s worth in doing nothing as properly. Not doing nothing as in studying, taking a nap, watching TV or meditating. Study to be nonetheless, in silence, to hear our internal voice and to be in tune with life. Do that day by day if potential.

29Cease enjoying video video games

They is perhaps enjoyable, however they will take up approach an excessive amount of time. Should you spend numerous time enjoying on-line video games, think about going every week with out it. Then, discover one thing else to do outdoors.

30Watch sunsets every day

Make it a day by day ritual to discover a great spot to watch the sundown, maybe having a light-weight dinner when you achieve this.

31Cease studying magazines

They’re principally crap and they waste your time and cash. Cancel your subscriptions and stroll previous them on the information stands. When you have to learn one thing, learn a trashy novel and even higher, learn Dumb Little Man as soon as a day and be accomplished.

32Escape from ruts

Do you do issues the identical method daily? Change it up and attempt one thing new. Take a special route to work. Begin your day trip in another way. Strategy work from a special approach. Take a look at issues from new views.

33Cease watching the information

It’s miserable and ineffective. In case you’re a information junky, this can be troublesome. I haven’t watch TV information or learn a newspaper frequently in about two years. It hasn’t harm me a bit.

34Snigger until you cry

Laughing is among the greatest methods to reside. Inform jokes and giggle your head off. Watch an superior comedy. Study to snort at something. Roll on the bottom laughing. You’ll adore it.

35Lose management

Not solely management over your self, however management over others. It’s a nasty behavior to attempt to management others as it should solely lead to stress and unhappiness for your self and these you attempt to management. Let others stay and reside for your self. Lose management of your self now and then, too.


Crying is a tremendous launch. So, cry at unhappy films, funeral or if you find yourself harm. It releases these feelings and permits us to cleanse ourselves.

37Make an superior dessert

I like to make heat, tender chocolate cake. However even berries dipped in chocolate, crepes with ice cream and fruit, recent apple pie or do-it-yourself chocolate chip cookies or brownies are nice. This isn’t an day-after-day factor, however an occasional deal with factor. It’s fantastic.

38Attempt one thing new, each week

Ask your self. “What new thing shall I try this week?”

Then, ensure to do it. You don’t have to study a brand new language in a single week, however search new experiences. Give it a attempt. You may determine you need to maintain it in your life.

39Be within the second

As an alternative of enthusiastic about belongings you want to do or issues which have occurred to you, take into consideration what you’re doing proper now.

What’s round you? What are you experiencing? Study to do that as a lot as attainable via meditation. It’ll train you ways to put your focus again to the current as a lot as you’ll be able to in all the things you do. It’ll enable you to be extra conscious on how to reside life to its fullest.

Written by Leo Babauta, a author, runner, vegetarian, and the proprietor of Zen Habits.

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Writer: Jay White

I began Dumb Little Man so nice authors, writers and bloggers might share their life “hacks” and ideas for fulfillment with everybody. I hope you discover one thing you want!