"Five Rules For Life" - editor's choice (third installment)

Every 60-70 submissions, I do a compilation post based on what I think are some of the most compelling, unique, and thought-provoking rules across all submissions. This is the third installment (see the second installment here and the first installment here).

It is not an easy exercise, as every rule in every submission carries great value. But these stand out for reasons I cannot fully explain.


No one is responsible for picking up after you.
You are responsible for you. No one will make you a success or a failure. No one will clean up your mess. No one will force you to do the right thing or prevent you from doing the wrong thing. Accept 100% responsibility for yourself right here and right now, and then act like it. Take responsibility for your decisions, be accountable for your actions, take care of the environment and the Earth.

- Tom Carson, read Tom's "Five Rules For Life" here.

Focus on the opportunity not the challenge.
Behind every innovation and solution is a story about someone who said there has to be a better way. I bet Henry Ford was walking behind a horse when he had the idea for his automobile.

- Shamelle Perera, read Shamelle's "Five Rules For Life" here.

Say thank you.
The person who bags your groceries, the spouse who cleans the dishes, the stranger who holds the door - they'll all notice and appreciate it.

- Deena Rafferty, read Deena's "Five Rules For Life" here.

Appreciate the little things.
A bunch of good "little things" strung together are like little lights that glow along the path of your life, brightening even the darkest of moments.

- Kristi Miceli, read Kristi's "Five Rules For Life" here.

Always have a dog.
Dogs love unconditionally. They think you are awesome. Try to be the person your dog thinks you are.

- Allison Furmaniak Delashmit, read Allison's "Five Rules For Life" here.

Don’t worry.
I once heard that worrying is like rocking in a rocking chair - it gives you something to do, but ultimately it gets you nowhere. Instead of worrying, do something about it - and if you can’t, then let it go. This is not giving up, it's accepting that some things are just not up to you.

- Angie Rivera, read Angie's "Five Rules For Life" here.

Accept help.
When people extend an olive branch, grab on to it with both hands and don't let it go. There is too little time to sit and be stubborn, too little time to be so proud that you push away those you love. Even when you feel alone, there is someone wishing they were right by your side. Let them be there.

- Claire Harnett, read Angie's "Five Rules For Life" here.

Be competent (expertise).
Finish everything completely - a task half done is worse than a task not started as it robs you of time.

- John Biasutti, read John's "Five Rules For Life" here.

Be here now.
Goals are essential, but never let the future or the past obliterate the present. It is the only thing you truly have - now. There are no guarantees of the future. The past is over. What you have is today. Make it a habit to revel in the moment at least once or twice every day. Carpe diem!

- Tara Waechter, read Tara's "Five Rules For Life" here.

"Nobody has to live in your skin but you."
This one comes from my Dad, and he tells it to me all the time when I'm wavering on my principles or beliefs. My Dad never tells me what to think, he just reminds me that no matter what decisions I make, I'm the only person who has to deal with the consequences - positive or negative.

- Cora Harrington, read Cora's "Five Rules For Life" here.

Treat people right.
Listen, care, use your manners, and don’t objectify people. Remember:

"The true measure of a man is how he treats someone who can do him absolutely no good." - Samuel Johnson

- Anna DiTommaso, read Cora's "Five Rules For Life" here.

Be your own hero.
Much of our pain is caused by our belief that happiness depends on something external to us. The day you realize that you and you alone are responsible for the quality of your life is the day you become free.

- Analiese Marie, read Analiese's "Five Rules For Life" here.

Believe in Karma.
I believe that what you put out to the universe is what you will get back from it. Therefore it is important to live your life in a way that honors this. If you don’t want an action or attitude directed at you, don’t direct it at others.

- Kylie Philips, read Kylie's "Five Rules For Life" here.

Eat the baby octopuses.
It frustrates me when dining companions turn up their noses at foods they have never tried because it "looks gross", "is slimy", or they are a "meat and potatoes person." A huge component of success is trying and learning new things, so when someone is not willing to try a new experience it says a lot about their potential for success.

- Chris Elliott, read Chris's "Five Rules For Life" here.

Live, love, and laugh.
These three L's encompass happiness in our life. Live in a place you enjoy residing in. Love the company you're surrounded by and eliminate the poisonous people in your life. Laugh with your friends and family however you can and whenever you can. You have only one life. You don't have time to put limits on any of these.

- John Anyasor, read John's "Five Rules For Life" here.

Make positive changes.
Simply stated, it is our responsibility to leave this world a better place than when we first arrived.

- Matt Corker, read Matt's "Five Rules For Life" here.

Question everything.
Don't just accept what you are told. What's right for someone else might not be right for you. I don't know at what age we lose that curiosity that we are born with, but we need to find it again. Learn something new every day.

- Nicole Watkins, read Nicole's "Five Rules For Life" here.

Visualize your success daily.
Napoleon Hill said "whatever the mind can conceive and believe, you have the ability to achieve." You must see your success in your mind daily. If you can consistently hold thoughts of success, you will begin to believe that it’s possible for you. Once you believe it’s possible, you will begin to take the actions that will make those thoughts a reality.

- Mr. Self Development, read Mr. Self Development's "Five Rules For Life" here.

Place more importance on what you have done rather than what happened to you.
You have no control over how tall you are nor what kind of looks you were born with. These things just happen to people. Give more importance to what you have attained through choice rather than what happened to you through circumstance. Obtaining an award for demonstrating your skills beats winning an award for being the best dressed girl/guy.

- Kristine Fetalco, read Kristine's "Five Rules For Life" here.

Smile often.
It's the key to a healthy heart.

- Abigail Woolston, read Abigail's "Five Rules For Life" here.

Stop. Breathe. Look. Listen. See the birds, hear the water, listen to a dog bark, smell the air. Watch your cat. Close your eyes and picture yourself in a serene location - on a beach, by a stream, on a mountain. No matter how busy your day is, you can find a couple of minutes to do this every few hours.


Turn off the technology for an hour a day - no cell phone, no Facebook, no TV.
I don't want to wake up one morning and wonder what I did with my life. I would hate to have spent all of my waking hours reading about your life and not living my own. So, with that said, get your butt up and go live life!

- Dondrea Brownlow, read Dondrea's "Five Rules For Life" here.

Listen to music.
It doesn't matter what kind of music you listen to - put on your favorite CD and get lost in the world of someone else's thoughts. Music has personally saved my life and been a voice for me when I couldn't find my own. It has been an outlet and a release. Never underestimate the power words and melodies can have on you.

- Andrea Towers, read Andrea's "Five Rules For Life" here.

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