Throughout your life, you’ve probably picked up on bits and pieces of contradictory advice on how to live a better life, because let’s be honest, all of our lives are messed up in various ways because we’re all inconsistent and imperfect, and sometimes life throws things at us that we can’t handle, even to the best of our abilities. So it’s no wonder why we’re constantly seeking more, trying more things to better ourselves, and changing our environment so that we have more control over things external to us.
However, we often go to unhealthy extremes when we’re making the effort to change our lives for the better. We either excuse ourselves too much when we procrastinate and escape from our lives, under the guise of “self-care” and “slowing down” or we work ourselves until we’re so burnt out and exhausted that we can’t have good relationships with others or take care of our health. We lie to ourselves and say that we can do more than what we’re physically and mentally capable of, but in the end, all that rushing leads to a dead end full of emptiness and purposelessness.
Why do we want to live a good life? What exactly does a good life mean? Is there a specific vision for the future that we are obliged to work for? Is it even possible do everything we want without worrying about how it’s going to be received by others? Do we even need to aim for something more, even when we’re already exhausted from our current lifestyle?
What we all need is balance. We need to balance our goals. We need to balance our expectations and keep a healthy perspective that’s evened out by both skepticism and idealism. We need to have a solid purpose for what we’re going to do, but we also need to give ourselves room to evolve because we rarely ever turn out the way we thought we would, and old dreams and plans will fall by the wayside while newer and more purposeful ones take their place.
We often hear contradictory pieces of advice when it comes to improving our own lives: