Advertising
Advertising

19 Unmissable Inspiring Life Lessons From Bruce Lee

19 Unmissable Inspiring Life Lessons From Bruce Lee

 Many people know of Bruce Lee from his wide achievements in film and martial arts. Born in the United States, Bruce Lee’s family hailed from Hong Kong. Bruce Lee lived in both countries throughout his life, and was a student of nearly ten different styles of martial arts. Bruce Lee became a master martial artist, and even founded his own branch, named Jeet Kune Do. While this may be a lesser known area of martial arts, notable Jeet Kune Do students include Chuck Norris and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. His talents don’t stop there however, as Bruce Lee is often credited with changing the way Asians were portrayed in Western cinema. Not someone who only cultivated an air of high achievement, Bruce Lee really lived the lessons he sought to impart. The following quotes are some of the most mind blowing examples of this man’s true wisdom.

Keep Pushing Yourself

Enter-the-Dragon-bruce-lee-27110855-1279-632

    “There are no limits. There are plateaus, but you must not stay there, you must go beyond them. If it kills you, it kills you. A man must constantly exceed his level.”

    In order to be successful, you must constantly challenge yourself and set new goals. In order to overcome some obstacles in life you must be determined enough to keep going no matter what.

    Stay Positive

    giphy

      “Choose the positive. — You have choice — you are master of your attitude — choose the POSITIVE, the CONSTRUCTIVE. Optimism is a faith that leads to success.”

      Be as optimistic as possible and you’ll find you can do more than you thought you could.

      Be True To Yourself

      Bruce_Lee_-_son-1

        “In life, what more can you ask for than to be real? To fulfill one’s potential instead of wasting energy on [attempting to] actualize one’s dissipating image, which is not real and an expenditure of one’s vital energy. We have great work ahead of us, and it needs devotion and much, much energy. To grow, to discover, we need involvement, which is something I experience every day — sometimes good, sometimes frustrating. No matter what, you must let your inner light guide you out of the darkness.”

        All of us must put effort into growing a more functional society, whether in a distant country, or in our own communities.

        Cultivate Determination

        tumblr_m67a75fz0a1qc5f4ro1_400

          “You must have complete determination. The worst opponent you can come across is one whose aim has become an obsession. For instance, if a man has decided that he is going to bite off your nose no matter what happens to him in the process, the chances are he will succeed in doing it. He may be severely beaten up, too, but that will not stop him from carrying out his objective. That is the real fighter.”

          Determination is a crucial skill on the road to success. Complete perseverance is sometimes required to reach them.

          Always Keep Growing

          1324060498_bruce_lee_flexing_muscles

            “There is no such thing as maturity. There is instead an ever-evolving process of maturing. Because when there is a maturity, there is a conclusion and a cessation. That’s the end. That’s when the coffin is closed.”

            A rich life is one that’s constantly open to new information and experiences. Once you cut yourself off to growth, you might as will be dead.

            Never Stop Educating Yourself

            Bruce_Lee_Stencil

              “Faith makes it possible to achieve that which man’s mind can conceive and believe. Even today, I dare not say that I have reached a state of achievement. I’m still learning, for learning is boundless.”

              In order to stay successful, one must always challenge themselves.

              Time Is Precious

              Enter-the-Dragon-bruce-lee-26683836-1280-800

                “We all have time to spend or waste, and it is our decision what to do with it. But once passed, it is gone forever.”

                The time we have on this earth is limited, and each of us should want to make the most of it. We can achieve great things if we seize the day and jump in.

                Live In The Moment

                tumblr_n3b1ivKfhL1t3bl69o3_500

                  “What is is more important than what should be.”

                  It is critical to accept your current circumstance in order to move on from them. If you obsess over what you should or would have done, you only waste time that could be used to find solutions.

                  Be The Best Version Of Yourself

                  8424723751_dfc5958ca0_z

                    “Knowledge will give you power, but character respect.”

                    Most effective people in life are those who “walk the walk.”

                    Failures Are Steps To Success

                    Way-of-the-Dragon-bruce-lee-28252502-1920-1080

                      “Don’t fear failure. — Not failure, but low aim, is the crime. In great attempts it is glorious even to fail.”

                      Failures are inevitable when trying new things. Failures are not permanent however, and failures should encourage you, because they show that you are in new territory. 

                      Always Move Forward

                      Bruce_Lee_in_1946

                        “Walk on.”

                        You must keep challenging yourself and moving forward to truly reach your full potential.

                        There Are No Limits

                        Bruce_Lee_1973

                          “Life is wide, limitless. There is no border, no frontier.”

                          Societal stigmas or popular opinions don’t really have any true power. Everyone deserves to have a chance to explore and discover what makes them happy.

                          Life Should Be Enjoyed

                          3455012141_6214e786f6

                            “The meaning of life is that it is to be lived, and it is not to be traded and conceptualized and squeezed into a pattern of systems.”

                            If you don’t fit into other peoples expectations, don’t be afraid. You can go after things that make you feel truly alive.

                            Reflect On Your Experiences

                            uqY8CeM

                              “Life itself is your teacher, and you are in a state of constant learning.”

                              Always try to learn from your experiences in life.

                              Be Proactive

                              post-19286-Bruce-Lee-Six-Inch-Punch-gif-aGPm

                                “Balance your thoughts with action. — If you spend too much time thinking about a thing, you’ll never get it done.”

                                We need goals to achieve anything, however thinking about an idea too long prevents us from taking time to achieve it.

                                Be Flexible

                                tumblr_mrn9dk0NSO1r2xzveo8_400

                                  “Be like water making its way through cracks. Do not be assertive, but adjust to the object, and you shall find a way around or through it. If nothing within you stays rigid, outward things will disclose themselves.” 

                                  Sometimes the path to where you want to go isn’t the way you imagined it. However, if you remain flexible, you will always be able to move towards your goal.

                                  Change Starts On The Inside

                                  HK_Star_Bruce_Lee_10

                                    “The change is from inner to outer. — We start by dissolving our attitude not by altering outer conditions.”

                                    Change starts from the inside, and we must utterly believe we can do something before we do it.

                                    Negativity Is Toxic

                                    Bruce_Lee_as_Kato_1967

                                      “Pessimism blunts the tools you need to succeed.”

                                      On the other hand, approaching life in a negative light makes it easy to walk away from challenges.

                                      Live Your Life

                                        “The key to immortality is first living a life worth remembering.” 

                                        Don’t be afraid to pursue your real goals. Our time here is short, and living a fulfilling life is a better reward than anything else.

                                        More by this author

                                        Alicia Prince

                                        A writer, filmmaker, and artist who shares about lifestyle tips and inspirations on Lifehack.

                                        When You Start to Enjoy Being Single, These 12 Things Will Happen 10 Things You Should Do If You’re Unemployed common words 18 Common Words That You Should Replace in Your Writing Wondering Why K Pop is So Popular? Here are 10 Reasons The 10 Most (And Least) Expensive States In America

                                        Trending in Communication

                                        1 How to Live in the Moment and Stop Worrying About the Past or Future 2 19 Golden Pieces of Relationship Advice From the Experts 3 This Is What Happens When You Move Out Of the Comfort Zone 4 What Does Success Look Like? Revealed by 12 Highly Successful People 5 How to Practice Mindful Meditation to Calm Your Thoughts

                                        Read Next

                                        Advertising
                                        Advertising
                                        Advertising

                                        Last Updated on May 20, 2019

                                        How to Live in the Moment and Stop Worrying About the Past or Future

                                        How to Live in the Moment and Stop Worrying About the Past or Future

                                        We sometimes hear people talk about the importance of living in the moment. We might hear about the different ways it will benefit us. It all sounds wonderful, but how exactly can we live in the moment when our mind is constantly racing?

                                        In this article, we’ll discuss some of the benefits of living in the moment you may not be aware of. Then we’ll look at some of the obstacles, and why we worry. Finally, and most importantly, I’ll show you how to live in the moment and stop worrying using some simple practices that you can easily incorporate into your busy schedule.

                                        The result: a happier and more fulfilling life.

                                        Why Live in the Moment?

                                        “The secret of health for both mind and body is not to mourn for the past, worry about the future, or anticipate troubles, but to live in the present moment wisely and earnestly.” – Buddha

                                        Living in the moment has innumerable benefits. Here are just a few that will enhance your life tremendously:

                                        Better Health

                                        By reducing stress and anxiety, you avoid many of the associated health consequences, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, and obesity. Studies have shown that being present can also improve psychological well-being.[1]

                                        Improve Your Relationships

                                        Have you ever been with someone who is physically present, but mentally he’s a million miles away?

                                        Being with unavailable people is a struggle, and makes relationships with them extremely difficult.

                                        How about being with someone who is fully present? We enjoy being with him because we can make a much deeper connection with him.

                                        By living in the moment, you can be that person other people enjoy being with, and you make relationships much easier.

                                        Greater Self-Control

                                        You have greater control over your mind, body, and emotions. Imagine how much better your life would be if it weren’t at the mercy of a racing mind, and unpredictable emotions. You would certainly be more at peace, and much happier.[2]

                                        Why Do We Worry?

                                        Before we answer this question, it’s important to distinguish between worry and concern.

                                        When we are concerned about something, we are more likely dealing with a real problem with realistic solutions. Then once we do whatever we can to address the problem, we’re willing to live with the outcome.

                                        Worrying, on the other hand, involves unrealistic thinking. We may worry about a problem that doesn’t really exist, or dwell on all the bad things that can happen as a result. Then, we feel unable to deal with the outcome. Either way, we have difficulty dealing with uncertainty, which is a normal part of life.

                                        Certainly, some of our problems may not have desirable outcomes, such as a serious health issue. Some problems may be beyond our control, such as civil unrest or economic downturn. In such cases, it can be hard to avoid worrying, but not impossible.

                                        We sometimes worry when we don’t know how to deal with a problem. For example, have you ever received a letter from the IRS telling you that you owe more money than you thought, and don’t have the funds to pay it? This is enough to scare anyone who is not familiar with taxes.

                                        How to Live in the Moment

                                        Step 1: Overcome Worrying

                                        In order to overcome worrying, we need to do two things:

                                        Advertising

                                        Learn How to Live in the Moment

                                        By living in the moment, you calm your mind, and are able to see more clearly.

                                        The reason some problems seem so daunting is that our mind is racing so fast that we cannot see things as they truly are. So we make up a bunch of possible scenarios in our mind, most of which are unlikely to come true.

                                        In addition to seeing more clearly, living in the moment will help us think more realistically. Unrealistic thinking is fueled by confusion and uncontrolled emotions. Calming your mind will reduce confusion and calm your emotions.

                                        Learn to Focus on Solutions Instead of Problems

                                        Some people tend to be more solution-oriented, and others more problem-oriented. Some of the factors that may determine this are gender, upbringing, and education.

                                        People with higher educations tend to be problem-solvers. That is what their years of education train them to do. In addition, their jobs probably reinforce this way of thinking.

                                        If you’re not problem-solving oriented, don’t worry. You can train yourself to worry less. We’ll discuss that soon.

                                        Step 2: Identify Obstacles to Living in the Moment

                                        In today’s busy world, it can be a challenge to live in the moment. The reasons revolve around how our mind works, and outside influences.

                                        Racing Mind

                                        Many busy people have a racing mind that never seems to slow down. Their mind gets so agitated from too much sensory stimulation.

                                        You see, anything that stimulates any of our five senses (sight, sound, taste, touch, and smell) will trigger a thought, and that thought leads to another, and then another, and so on.

                                        If you have a busy life, all your activities will overstimulate your mind, and make it seemingly impossible to slow it down. And an agitated mind wants to go to another place and time.

                                        Unpleasant Situations and Troublesome Past

                                        None of us want to be in unpleasant situations, or remember those of the past. They can bring up painful emotions, which we don’t want to feel.

                                        So how do most people cope with painful emotions?

                                        By doing whatever we can to avoid them, and we can avoid them by taking our mind to another place and time where things are more pleasant.

                                        In other words, we avoid living in the present moment.

                                        Some people resort to doing things that stimulate sensory pleasure, such as eating, alcohol or sex. Others will consume substances that dull their mind, and keep them from thinking about unpleasant or stressful situations.

                                        A Wandering Mind

                                        From the moment we are born (likely sooner) until the time we die, our body and mind are active performing some function. So it’s natural for our mind to have some level of activity, whether conscious or unconscious.

                                        Generally, a wandering mind is unproductive. As noted above, one thought starts an endless chain of thoughts. The reason is that one thought reminds us of something else, and this process can go on until we need our mind to perform a specific function, or until we get distracted with something else.

                                        Advertising

                                        Now, there are times when a wandering mind can be productive, such as when creating works of art, or trying to find creative solutions to problems. In such cases, we need our mind to explore different possibilities.[3]

                                        Outside Influences

                                        Most of us are not fully aware of how our environment and social norms influence our thinking and behavior. People and institutions are constantly competing for our attention. The news media draw our attention to the past, and advertising usually to the future.[4]

                                        Many people around us who dwell on the past or future try to draw us to their way of thinking. Even the whole concept of the American dream is geared toward the future. It tells us that if we acquire things like a good career, family, and house, then we’ll be happy.

                                        Step 3: Practice Mindfulness

                                        So how can we live in the moment in a world that is constantly trying to draw our attention to the past and future?

                                        Before we get into concrete actions you can take, it’s important to understand what mindfulness is. You’ve probably heard the term before, but may not fully understand what it means.

                                        Understand Mindfulness

                                        The concept of mindfulness is actually quite simple. To be mindful IS to live in the moment.

                                        When you are mindful, your attention is focused on what is happening in the present moment. When you are mindful, you are fully in touch with reality because the present moment is where reality is taking place.

                                        You are aware of what is happening in your body, mind, emotions, and the world around you. This is different than thinking about these things. To develop greater understanding, you don’t have to think about them so much, but rather just observe them.

                                        This may be counter-intuitive to many people, especially intellectuals, because they’re so used to using logic to develop greater understanding. With mindfulness, we calm our mind and emotions so we can see clearer. Then much of our understanding will come from simply observation. When we develop mindfulness, we literally expand our awareness.

                                        To develop mindfulness, we need to train ourselves to observe things more objectively, that is, without our emotions or preconceived ideas influencing our views.

                                        You’d be surprised to find out just how much your emotions and past experiences influence your judgments. What many of us do, including intellectuals, is make a quick judgment about a person or situation, then add the reasoning afterwards. That is not logic, but rather rationalization.

                                        When you are mindful, you reserve judgment until you have more information. Notice how I said “more information,” and not “complete information.” It is impossible to have complete information about something because there are infinite numbers of factors affecting it. So the best thing to do is be as objective as possible, and always be open to new information.

                                        Viewing the world in this manner can be a challenge, and takes some practice to overcome years of habitual thinking. But it can make our lives infinitely more fulfilling, as we’ll be able to make much better decisions that will result in real happiness and inner peace.

                                        So if you’re ready to live a better life, read on for some simple mindfulness practices that you can incorporate into your busy life to help you live in the moment, that is, reality.

                                        You don’t have to do all of them, but rather choose the ones that appeal to you, and suit your lifestyle.

                                        Mindfulness Meditation

                                        Mindfulness meditation is the mainstay of developing mindfulness and living in the moment. To practice mindfulness meditation, all you really have to do is sit quietly and follow your breathing. When your mind wanders off, just bring it back to your breath.

                                        Notice how your lungs expand with each in-breath, and contract with each out-breath. Let your breathing become relaxed and natural.

                                        Advertising

                                        You don’t have to do it perfectly. The idea is to give your mind a rest from the constant sensory stimulation of all your activities, and just allow it to settle down naturally. Start with about 5 to 10 minutes per day and work your way up to about 20 minutes or longer.

                                        This practice is highly effective, and can have both short-term and long-term benefits.

                                        If you want to learn more about mindfulness meditation, take a look at this article: How to Practice Mindful Meditation to Calm Your Thoughts

                                        Also, there are many good books on the market that explain the concepts and techniques in greater detail. Some examples are

                                        Mindful Breathing

                                        While this may sound the same as mindfulness meditation, all you’re really doing is taking short breaks occasionally (10 to 15 seconds) to observe your breathing. Stop whatever you’re doing, and take a few mindful breaths, then resume your activity. That’s it.

                                        You can do mindful breathing at any time of the day during your busy schedule. What it does is interrupt the acceleration of your mind. It is like taking your foot off the accelerator while driving. It’s a nice refreshing break you can take without anyone noticing.

                                        Here’re some breathing exercises you can try to learn: 5 Breathing Exercises for Anxiety (Simple and Calm Anxiety Quickly)

                                        Mindful Walking

                                        Walking is an activity that you perform several times throughout the day. We often think we’re being productive by texting, or calling someone while walking. But are we really?

                                        Instead of getting on your cell phone, or letting your mind wander off, why not use your walking for training yourself to live in the moment?

                                        Mindful walking is similar to mindful breathing. But instead of focusing on your breath, focus on your walking. Pay attention to each footstep. Also, notice the different motions of your arms, legs, and torso. When your mind wanders off, just bring your attention back to your walking.

                                        You can even make a meditation out of walking. That is, go walking for a few minutes outside. Start by slowing down your pace. If you slow down your body, your mind will follow.

                                        In addition to paying attention to your walking, notice the trees, sunshine, and critters. A mindful walk is enjoyable, and can really help your mind settle down.

                                        Mindful Eating

                                        Eating is an activity that most of us perform mindlessly. The reason is that it doesn’t require your attention to perform. So what many of us do is try to multitask while we eat. We may talk on the phone, text, watch TV, or even hold a meeting.

                                        The problem with not eating mindfully is that we don’t eat what our body and mind need to perform at an optimal level. We may eat unhealthy foods, or too much. This can lead to various health problems, especially as we get older.

                                        Mindful eating has many health benefits, such as reduced food cravings, better digestion, and even weight loss.[5]

                                        So how do you eat mindfully? Start by slowing down, and avoid the temptation to distract yourself with another activity. Here are 3 different aspects of eating where you can practice mindfulness:

                                        • Eating itself: Focus your attention on choosing a portion of food to insert into your mouth. Notice the smell, flavor, and texture as you chew it; then finally swallow it. As with following your breath during meditation, pay close attention to every aspect of eating.
                                        • Choice of foods: Although you’ve already chosen your food before you have begun eating, you can still take the opportunity to contemplate your choices. Think about the nutrients your body needs to sustain itself. Ask yourself, “Is this what my body and mind need to be healthy, and perform at an optimal level?” “Is it sufficient, or too much?” By asking yourself these questions, you will be more inclined to make better choices in the future.
                                        • Contemplating the sources: Most of us don’t think about all the work it takes to provide us with the food we eat. While you’re eating, consider all the work by the farmer, shipping company, and the grocery store. These are real people who worked hard to provide you with the food necessary for your survival.

                                        You can find more tips about mindful eating here: 7 Simple Steps to Mindful Eating

                                        Advertising

                                        Mindful Activities

                                        Choose an activity that you perform regularly, such as washing dishes. Focus all your attention on this activity, and resist the temptation to let your mind wander, or get distracted. When it does, then just bring your attention back to washing dishes.

                                        Notice some of the specific movements, or sensations of washing dishes, such as how the soapy water feels on your hands, the circular motion of scrubbing the dish, or the rinsing. You’d be surprised at how such a mundane activity can truly expand your awareness.

                                        You can choose any activity you like, such as ironing, folding clothes, mowing the lawn, or showering. Over time, you will begin doing all these activities with greater mindfulness.

                                        Bonus Suggestion

                                        Here is one activity that is not generally considered a mindful activity. It is physical training. For those of you who already workout, it may be easy to see how physical training requires you to live in the moment.

                                        Here’s how it works:

                                        In order to perform an exercise to get the desired benefit, you need to use a proper technique. In order to use the proper technique, you need to pay close attention to how you are doing the exercise. In other words, you need to be fully present in the moment.

                                        Another aspect of training that helps you live in the moment is tuning into what is happening in your body. First, during exercising, you need to pay close attention to how your body feels. Are you exercising hard enough, or not enough?

                                        There are times to go easy, such as during warm-up exercises; and times to push yourself hard, such as when you’re warmed up and want to stimulate growth.

                                        Second, when you’re not in the gym training, you need to pay close attention to the signals your body is sending you. What nutrients and how much do you need to consume to support your training? How much rest do you need?

                                        By tuning in to your body, you force yourself to be in the moment. So, physical training done properly is just about as effective as meditation, or any mindful activity, for developing mindfulness. It’s also great for your health.

                                        Final Thoughts

                                        Practicing mindfulness is like regularly putting small amounts of change in a jar. They will all add up over time. And this will add up to greater peace and happiness.

                                        Remember, you don’t have to do the mindfulness practices perfectly to get the benefits. All you have to do is keep bringing your mind back to the present moment when it wanders off.

                                        Practicing mindfulness may be a bit challenging in the beginning; but I can assure you, it will get easier fairly quickly.

                                        The benefits of living in the moment are well within your reach, no matter how much your mind is racing. If you stick with these mindfulness practices, you too will learn how to live in the moment and stop worrying; and when you do, a whole new world will open up for you. This is what Zen master Thich Nhat Hanh calls the ultimate reality.

                                        Featured photo credit: Priscilla Du Preez via unsplash.com

                                        Reference

                                        Read Next