1. Soma (the name of the brain-numbing happiness drug in the novel Brave New World) in these times is everything: movie-streaming, self-improvement, Tik Tok, the news cycle, the latest app… everything that distracts us from reality. Tread carefully.
2. Life as a nerd is exciting + rewarding. The adventure is silent, inward, ongoing, and fully self-contained.
3. Borrow books from the library or buy the ebook version first. Buy the physical copy after you’ve confirmed that it’s a book you enjoy. This prevents you from buying and owning books you don’t love.
4. There is no need to be a perfectionist when you’re learning something. The attitude of “go big or go home” is counter-productive, because you might stop learning the moment you’re not learning perfectly. Learning bits and pieces of a new thing is better than not learning at all.
5. Write about the things you practice; practice the things you write about. Words without action is fraudulent. (It’s hard, but I try.)
6. Meditation (mindfulness) reduces mental (and sometimes physical) suffering drastically.
7. We’re mainly our neural pathways, which science has proven to be malleable. This is hopeful news, which means we can change for the better if we want to. No one, no life, is hopeless.
8. Am I following my curiosities or merely on auto-pilot?
9. There is a joy in doing hard things. Why don’t I do hard things more often?
10. You can be free right this moment, by surrendering and fully giving up your struggles. Stop fighting (yourself and the world).
Bonus link – Zhuangzi Explained: Legendary Chinese Parables for freedom, spontaneity & joy