having fun

"You have to do the thing you actually enjoy doing, not the thing you find conceptually exciting. You have to date the person you actually like, not the ideal of perfection you fetishize in your mind. And you have to have enough self-knowledge to know what you enjoy."

What Makes You Happy

"A weird thing in life is that everyone strives for a good life because they think it will make them happy. But what actually brings happiness is the contrast between what you have now and whatever you were just doing."

"Happiness, contentment, joy … all of those things come from experiencing a gap between expectations and reality."

how to be cool

"But the ultimate way to ‘outsmart’ Resistance is not to fight it, but instead to lead from a place of stillness. To quiet your mind when it speaks up, and bring yourself back to the moment."

"Self-acceptance is the natural source of coolness. It is a renewable resource. The more you accept yourself, the cooler you become. Trends are non-renewable—any coolness you source from them will expire—and you will be forever stuck looking for something new to imitate. When you learn that the coolest parts of you are the parts you are covering up with the stuff that you think makes you cool, you’ll shed everything and just be yourself."

"Let your life reflect your true self. Lean into the quirks in your style. Let your interests roam free. Be passionate about what you love, about who you love. Lean into your weird. Say what you want to say. Do what you want to do. Feed your curiosity. Befriend the people you actually align with, instead of “cool” people that hold social signal value."

Why Americans Care About Work So Much

"The credo that work should be the centerpiece of one’s identity quietly governs several stages of modern life. For many children and their parents, it has created an obsession with educational achievement that is igniting an anxiety crisis. For adults, it leads to overwork in the labor force and less time focused on family, friends, and personal pursuits."

The Best Deal in the World Right Now

"Chances are, you can have the magic pill if you want it, under terms similar to those above: doing 30-60 minutes of vigorous (for you) exercise per day will positively transform your life, in a dozen or so mutually-reinforcing ways — unless you’re already doing it."

"human bodies were made specifically for doing strenuous things, and so living without regular vigorous activity makes us sick. Opting out of vigorous daily exercise isn’t denying oneself an excellent opportunity to rise above the normal human state, it’s to never know it at all."

"You have to do exercises that have something for you in them — something at least marginally interesting or attractive. Try a lot of activities, build a repertoire from the ones you’re most keen on, and drop the ones you dread."

"People that do any kind of vigorous activity regularly do it because they’ve found something they like about it in the short term. If it’s not the feeling of the movement itself, it’s beating their previous numbers, its social environment, its rituals, or something else that feels at least a bit good today. Nobody is running on pure willpower, or visions of distant rewards. Find the activities with qualities you like, and drill down."

A Few Lessons on Showing Up

"This gesture signaled a simple point: He was rooting for me. Even though we’d never met before, there was something about my consistency that made me a person worth cheering for. He didn’t know my background, my values, my beliefs, anything. But the mere fact that I showed up every morning to tackle this hill was a good enough indicator that I was someone to happily acknowledge."

"Once you get past the start, there’s too much friction for you to go back and hit the abort button."

"Friction is at its highest at the start of any endeavor. To alleviate this, do one simple action that makes the beginning as frictionless as possible."

Beyond Getting Stuff Done

"if you ever get really really good at executing and getting stuff done … you realize that it’s an empty, meaningless game."

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