• Antti Vanhanen

How I Improve Myself


We are fast approaching January 1, a date on which millions of people make New Year's promises and begin rigorous self-improvement programs.

The vast majority of them will fail.


To provide another - perhaps more useful - perspective, I will share with you what I do to improve myself:

I do absolutely nothing.

This may sound absurd until you consider that for the first 39 years of my life, I did everything.

I meditated.

I took cold showers.

I wrote down my goals.

I visualized.

And so on.

None of it really worked for me.

It just made me think there must be something deeply wrong with me.

Instead of improving my life, they seemed to make my life worse.

Then I came across someone who helped me wake up from the dream of my thinking.

This person helped me see that all feelings are generated from within, not from achievements, practices, or possessions.

So I stopped strategising, fearing, blaming myself, and worrying about what I said and what I did.

Instead, I just got on with life.

Like animals or babies. (Ever notice how they don’t need self improvement programs and practices to be awesome at life?)

Today, my approach is fundamentally unintellectual.

I cut myself slack. As much slack as it takes.

I don’t spend much time monitoring what I say and do.

And if I say or do something stupid or negative, I don’t give myself a hard time about it. I just take a mental note and move on. Self punishment isn’t necessary for learning. Or even that useful.

Instead, I just let life flow and I do my best to simply flow with it.

It’s amazing how easy and effortless life becomes when you just do what occurs to you and stop spending so damn much time in your head.

So rather than add yet another thing to do, practice and remember to improve yourself, realize how perfectly awesome you are exactly as you are.

And then stop thinking and get on with it.

#selfimprovement #wisdom #acceptance #understanding

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