Thursday, January 28, 2021

Listen to Jack London: ‘Don’t just exist, live’

Jack London, an American author of short-story books once said, “The proper function of man is to live not to exist”.

Too often people go through life on autopilot, going through the motions and having each day pass like the one before.

Existence may mean that we are here, but not really enjoying life and seeing the different colours of life. Mere existence does not make a difference whereas living means that we are present and involved in every second.
Life has stages. You do not necessarily have to be a drunkard during your youth to say you have lived life. A cycle of waking up in the morning, going to school, work, coming back home without any extra activity every day is boring.

Some people actually complain due to the boredom they experience every day.
When you’re frustrated, it’s hard to stay positive. And it’s especially harder to stay positive when the evidence all around you screams negativity.

And do you know what happens when you fail to stay positive? That’s right you start attracting negative things into your life. You should allow yourself to receive, never ever shy away from receiving thinking that you are complied to give back immediately.

One more thing, you cannot be given when you don’t ask, imagine that you are lost and you don’t ask for directions, no one is going to direct you.

You also need guidance on how to do it, and also the role models to look up to. So seek and be hungry for new knowledge. Also, make an effort to be amongst people or communities where you can support each other, learn from each other and also share new knowledge that you have found.

There are more things you can add to your life in order to live than simply existing.

Fall in love, if you aren’t already. If you have, fall in love with your partner all over again. Abandon caution and let your heart be broken.

1. Don’t let yourself be shut indoors. Pay close attention to nature.

2. Don’t just eat your food, but really enjoy it. Feel the texture, the bursts of flavours. Savour every bite.

3. We often live our lives too cautiously, worried about what might go wrong. Be bold, risk it all. Quit your job and go to business for yourself (plan it out first!), or go up to that girl you’ve liked for a long time and ask her out. What do you have to lose?

4. Try to find the things in life that excite you, and then go after them. Make life one exciting adventure after another.

5. Find a way to take a trip, if not this month, then sometime soon.

6. Learn to recognize the negative thoughts you have. These are the self-doubts, the criticisms of others, the complaints, the reasons you can’t do something. Then stop yourself when you have these thoughts, and replace them with positive thoughts. Solutions. You can do this!

7. Open your heart, have it ready to receive love, to give love unconditionally.

8. Life isn’t all about fun and games. Suffering is an inevitable part of life. We lose our jobs. We lose our lovers. We lose our pets. We get physically injured or sick. A loved one becomes sick. A parent dies. Learn to feel the pain intensely, and really grieve. This is a part of life really feel the pains. And when you’re done, move on, and find joy.

9. Help the sick, those with disabilities, those who are dying.

10. Children, more than anyone else, know how to live. They experience everything in the moment, fully. When they get hurt, they really cry. When they play, they really have fun. Learn from them, instead of thinking you know so much more than them. Play with them, and learn to be joyful like them.

11. Talk to old people. There is no one wiser, more experienced, more learned, than those who have lived through life.

12. Find your spirituality. This means becoming in tune with God, for some with the spirits of our ancestors, or with nature. Whatever spirituality means for you, rediscover it, and its power.

13. Despite all the above that we should find excitement, there is value in doing nothing as well. Doing nothing as in sitting there, doing nothing. Just learning to be still, in silence, to hear our inner voice, to be in tune with life. Do this daily if possible.

RELATED STORIES

Read this week's paper