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7 Practical Life Lessons From Albert Einstein

7 Practical Life Lessons From Albert Einstein

Every so often, there comes a man who is able to see the universe in a new way, whose vision upsets the very foundations of the world as we know it.

With his ideas still informant, Albert Einstein was 22 years old when he sat out alone on foot across the Alps. In his youthful passage through the mountains he longed to grasp the hidden design, the underline principles of nature. Throughout his life, Einstein would look for the harmony, not only in his science but in the world of men.

The world wanted to know Albert Einstein and yet he remained a mystery to those who only saw public face and perhaps to himself as well.

However, the next 7 practical life lessons can reveal Einstein’s way of thinking and formulating the miracles in former times.

1. Follow Your Curiosity

“I have no special talent. I am only passionately curious”

What Einstein is trying to deliver with this message, is that curiosity forefront him through all the foundations during his life. We may say that we are curious, but we often snap when we need action to reveal and answer question marks.

Follow your curiosity, whatever that is. It will endlessly go deeper and deeper. That’s what divides us from being average. Digging in places where no one before thought miracles will be found so deep.

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Keep digging your vision and answer all the questions. You will be amazed how life can be extraordinary with continuous curiosity.

2. Perseverance Is Priceless

“It’s not that I’m so smart; it’s just that I stay with problems longer.”

Besides from Einstein, as many researches as I have previously done (especially on highly successful people), I’ve concluded that perseverance is what brought them the major discoveries.

They say that every problem you can think of has at least one solution. If we keep staying with that problem, chopping and pinching it from every corner, we will discover at least one solution.

So whatever you can think of, such as your vision, you can always get over anything on the way if you include perseverance in your character. Don’t ever give up on your unsolved problems.

3. Make Mistakes

“A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.”

It’s not deliberately the meaning of “make a mistake and you will follow Einstein’s path”. It means that we should forcefully attack the fears and the unknowns. We may want to go and work in Alaska, but we will never discover how it feels to work in Alaska if we stay in Chicago.

Dare to discover and dare to make mistakes. That’s what divides people from successful and unsuccessful. You will never learn to conquer the weak sides if we don’t dare to try and be wrong.

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4. Create Value

“Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value.”

Most people approach the word “success” wrongly. It’s not just being bare-wealthy and having big firm who runs mechanically without your existence. Success is about getting all mentioned before, step by step, so we will be able to appreciate those things while we create and sustain them.

Someone of value inspires others to live the right way and do the right thing. Live in accordance with one’s religious, philosophical, or spiritual values. A person of value has ethics, morality, decency, integrity, principles and honesty. All those things one should strive to attain.

5. Knowledge Comes From Experience

“Information is not knowledge. The only source of knowledge is experience.”

When we see a capable and apt person in a given situation, we conclude that the person is experienced. Not because they read a lot and they have big library at home, but because they were in a lot of similar situations and now have vast knowledge in that area.

Coming from number three, we should strive to make mistakes and gain experience of how “not to” approach particular problem. That’s how experience is gained.

6. Learn The Rules And Then Play Better

“You have to learn the rules of the game. And then you have to play better than anyone else.”

We are taught the rules of the game our whole lives. Whether we like it or not, we are obliquely learned to play by the rules.

For example, rules of the game to become a success are to be persistent, preserve, and to gain experience all the time.

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If we learn to preserve, persist and to gain experience more than others, we will always be one step ahead from everyone.

It doesn’t mean that you have to behave like everyone else or do the same things other successful people do. Once you have a full understanding of the rules of the game, you can have the power to play better, challenge the rules of the game, or to change them.

7. The Imagination Is Powerful

“Imagination is everything. It is the preview of life’s coming attractions. Imagination is more important than knowledge.”

While we cleared the term of knowledge and experience, imagination is something similar to 3D world in our heads.

I firmly believe that imagination is coming from knowledge, experience, and most of all, reading.

Reading things in our sphere, say, blogging and SEO (if I am the case) there is nothing that I can’t imagine and do to make my website viral.

The power to imagine is the power to formulate clear picture of how your future will be painted if you do a particular thing.

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Short example:

We play football and I have the ball. If I try to dribble, I would have few options. The worst is to lose the ball and make possible counter attack, but if I succeed to dribble one player, I will leave one player open free for passing and I will positively open the game on our behalf.

Imagination would be a lot more complex than this when we have life waiting on us to make decisions, but life is also made up of all sorts of small choices. Imagination is what will serve best to do the better ones.

Featured photo credit: Albert Einstein/Peter Wagner via flickr.com

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Last Updated on September 18, 2020

13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

For the original article by Celestine: 13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

“We all have problems. The way we solve them is what makes us different.” ~Unknown

“It’s not stress that kills us, it is our reaction to it.” – Hans Selye

Have you ever experienced moments when things just don’t go your way? For example, losing your keys, accidentally spilling your drink, waking up late, missing your buses/trains, forgetting to bring your things, and so on?

You’re not alone. All of us, myself included, experience times when things don’t go as we expect.

Here is my guide on how to deal with daily setbacks.

1. Take a step back and evaluate

When something bad happens, take a step back and evaluate the situation. Some questions to ask yourself:

  1. What is the problem?
  2. Are you the only person facing this problem in the world today?
  3. How does this problem look like at an individual level? A national level? On a global scale?
  4. What’s the worst possible thing that can happen to you as a result of this?
  5. How is it going to impact your life in the next 1 year? 5 years? 10 years?

Doing this exercise is not to undermine the problem or disclaiming responsibility, but to consider different perspectives, so you can adopt the best approach for it. Most problems we encounter daily may seem like huge issues when they crop up, but most, if not all, don’t have much impact in our life beyond that day.

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2. Vent if you have to, but don’t linger on the problem

If you feel very frustrated and need to let off some steam, go ahead and do that. Talk to a friend, complain, crib about it, or scream at the top of your lungs if it makes you happy.

At the same time, don’t get caught up with venting. While venting may temporarily relieve yourself, it’s not going to solve the problem ultimately. You don’t want to be an energy vampire.

Vent if there’s a need to, but do it for 15 to 20 minutes. Then move on.

3. Realize there are others out there facing this too

Even though the situation may be frustrating, you’re not alone. Remember there are almost 7 billion people in the world today, and chances are that other people have faced the same thing before too. Knowing it’s not just you helps you to get out of a self-victimizing mindset.

4. Process your thoughts/emotions

Process your thoughts/emotions with any of the four methods:

  1. Journal. Write your unhappiness in a private diary or in your blog. It doesn’t have to be formal at all – it can be a brain dump on rough paper or new word document. Delete after you are done.
  2. Audio taping. Record yourself as you talk out what’s on your mind. Tools include tape recorder, your PC (Audacity is a freeware for recording/editing audio) and your mobile (most mobiles today have audio recording functions). You can even use your voice mail for this. Just talking helps you to gain awareness of your emotions. After recording, play back and listen to what you said. You might find it quite revealing.
  3. Meditation. At its simplest form, meditation is just sitting/lying still and observing your reality as it is – including your thoughts and emotions. Some think that it involves some complex mambo-jumbo, but it doesn’t.
  4. Talking to someone. Talking about it with someone helps you work through the issue. It also gets you an alternate viewpoint and consider it from a different angle.

5. Acknowledge your thoughts

Don’t resist your thoughts, but acknowledge them. This includes both positive and negative thoughts.

By acknowledging, I mean recognizing these thoughts exist. So if say, you have a thought that says, “Wow, I’m so stupid!”, acknowledge that. If you have a thought that says, “I can’t believe this is happening to me again”, acknowledge that as well.

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Know that acknowledging the thoughts doesn’t mean you agree with them. It’s simply recognizing the existence of said thoughts so that you can stop resisting yourself and focus on the situation on hand.

6. Give yourself a break

If you’re very stressed out by the situation, and the problem is not time sensitive, then give yourself a break. Take a walk, listen to some music, watch a movie, or get some sleep. When you’re done, you should feel a lot more revitalized to deal with the situation.

7. Uncover what you’re really upset about

A lot of times, the anger we feel isn’t about the world. You may start off feeling angry at someone or something, but at the depth of it, it’s anger toward yourself.

Uncover the root of your anger. I have written a five part anger management series on how to permanently overcome anger.

After that, ask yourself: How can you improve the situation? Go to Step #9, where you define your actionable steps. Our anger comes from not having control on the situation. Sitting there and feeling infuriated is not going to change the situation. The more action we take, the more we will regain control over the situation, the better we will feel.

8. See this as an obstacle to be overcome

As Helen Keller once said,

“Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experiences of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared, ambition inspired and success achieved.”

Whatever you’re facing right now, see it as an obstacle to be overcome. In every worthy endeavor, there’ll always be countless obstacles that emerge along the way. These obstacles are what separate the people who make it, and those who don’t. If you’re able to push through and overcome them, you’ll emerge a stronger person than before. It’ll be harder for anything to get you down in the future.

9. Analyze the situation – Focus on actionable steps

In every setback, there are going to be things that can’t be reversed since they have already occurred. You want to focus on things that can still be changed (salvageable) vs. things that have already happened and can’t be changed. The only time the situation changes is when you take steps to improve it. Rather than cry over spilt milk, work through your situation:

  1. What’s the situation?
  2. What’s stressing you about this situation?
  3. What are the next steps that’ll help you resolve them?
  4. Take action on your next steps!

After you have identified your next steps, act on them. The key here is to focus on the actionable steps, not the inactionable steps. It’s about regaining control over the situation through direct action.

10. Identify how it occurred (so it won’t occur again next time)

A lot of times we react to our problems. The problem occurs, and we try to make the best out of what has happened within the context. While developing a healthy coping mechanism is important (which is what the other helping points are on), it’s also equally important, if not more, to understand how the problem arose. This way, you can work on preventing it from taking place next time, vs. dealing reactively with it.

Most of us probably think the problem is outside of our control, but reality is most of the times it’s fully preventable. It’s just a matter of how much responsibility you take over the problem.

For example, for someone who can’t get a cab for work in the morning, he/she may see the problem as a lack of cabs in the country, or bad luck. However, if you trace to the root of the problem, it’s probably more to do with (a) Having unrealistic expectations of the length of time to get a cab. He/she should budget more time for waiting for a cab next time. (b) Oversleeping, because he/she was too tired from working late the previous day. He/she should allocate enough time for rest next time. He/she should also pick up better time management skills, so as to finish work in lesser time.

11. Realize the situation can be a lot worse

No matter how bad the situation is, it can always be much worse. A plus point vs. negative point analysis will help you realize that.

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12. Do your best, but don’t kill yourself over it

No matter how bad your situation may seem, do your best, but don’t kill yourself over it. Life is too beautiful to worry so much over daily issues. Take a step back (#1), give yourself a break if you need to (#6), and do what you can within your means (#9). Everything else will unfold accordingly. Worrying too much about the outcome isn’t going to change things or make your life any better.

13. Pick out the learning points from the encounter

There’s something to learn from every encounter. What have you learned from this situation? What lessons have you taken away?

After you identify your learning points, think about how you’re going to apply them moving forward. With this, you’ve clearly gained something from this encounter. You’ve walked away a stronger, wiser, better person, with more life lessons to draw from in the future.

Get the manifesto version of this article: [Manifesto] What To Do When Things Don’t Go Your Way

Featured photo credit: Alice Donovan Rouse via unsplash.com

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