Am wrapping up my interest in self-help and motivational content. So many things keep coming back that I no longer find it useful to read yet another one of those success books or to listen to the so manieth podcast pushing ‘billionaire habits’ or ‘the ten foods that will kill you’ or ‘how to find your purpose in life’ and more of that eye-ball hunting magic. Some of what the self-help industry tells us is solid though. My only problem with it is that it gets repetitive and derivative. That’s why I have compiled this list. I don’t know how many hours of content consumption I have squeezed into this list, but it must be more than 1,000 hours. The list contains over 200 points.

Here are the first 10

  1. People tell you who they are in the first 90 seconds that you interact with them. If… you know what to look for. Most of our communication is non-verbal. You can feel someone’s vibe in those first 90 seconds. Their body language, tone of voice, handshake, gesticulation, eye contact… The thing here is too look past these superficial layers (a psychopath can have shiny shoes and a pearly white smile and a firm handshake too) and go with your gut feeling. Do you like the person you have just met? Do you feel positive energy while in the presence of this person? Go with that. Those first 90 seconds never lie.
  2. Human beings have sex after six to about maximum 30 hours of interacting with each other. Less or more than that makes the prospect of having sex extremely unlikely and even suspicious. There could be mental health issues playing in the background or severe trauma. Or one of the two is in the so called ‘friend zone’ and hoping for something that the other already knows will never be. Goes too fast? Red flag. Goes too slow? Cut your losses and move on, the person isn’t attracted to you.
  3. Most women do not orgasm from penetrative sex alone, though almost all novels, movies, series… will have you believe otherwise. Don’t let your ego get in the way of actually reading several books on what women need in bed. Even if you are convinced you are a rock star in bed…. Go read some of those books. There are some really excellent ones out there. This post can also help.
  4. Behind the scenes of every industry stuff is happening that will disgust you. It’s just the way our economy is run. Companies cannot admit to mistakes and have a lot to cover up. Same goes for people. Mistakes are perceived as weak. Consumers are merciless when a product gets bad publicity. Our laws are so complex and competition is so tough that inevitably companies have to cheat in some way or other or at least withhold sensitive information from the public. As an individual we have to decide to keep our hands as clean as possible, while still making a living… This is a balancing act almost all of us face.
  5. Motivation alone is not going to cut it. You’re probably not trying to reach the goals you claim you have. People are notoriously bad at pushing themselves. If you can’t start today what makes you think you will start tomorrow? You have to fight for your dreams also on the days you won’t feel like it. There will be many days like that. If you don’t feel like going for your own dream consistently and with all you have got you will be unhappily employed working for someone else’s dream.
  6. Discipline will beat talent most of the time. You’re going to have to some serious hard work if you want to get anywhere in life. Talent alone is not going to do it for you.
  7. As long as you are selling your time you will never be rich. You can work for about 12 to 16 hours a day – if you really, really want to push it – even at a very decent rate selling your time like that will not make you rich. Maybe you love your job, maybe it’s not your goal to become rich, but if it is, realize this: selling your time is not going to get you rich. You need a product, you need to be making money while you are sleeping, you need the right investment, you need sources of passive income…
  8. Once you have been sexually abused it’s more likely to happen again. Predators can smell it on you. Victim agreeableness. There is also such a thing as trauma repetition. People have been victimized early in life may subconsciously be putting themselves in situations where it might happen again. This doesn’t make the abuse the fault of the victim, it’s just behaviour in response to trauma that predators capitalize on. All of us can benefit from understanding Freud’s concept of ‘trauma repetition.’ Humans have a tendency to attract the same things that hurt them in the past until they finally learn and move past it. Remember, the lesson repeats until the student learns.
  9. Nice people are potentially more dangerous than rude people. We can easily mistake friendliness for being the sign of a good person and abrasive behaviour as a sign that someone is evil. There need not be such a clear correlation.
  10. Nobody can keep a secret. That includes you and all of your friends. So if you really don’t want anyone to know what you are about to share then your only option is to not tell it to anyone. We are finding out in this information age that information is one of the most valuable assets a human can have. There is even a theory that the ability to gossip has let us jump to the top of the food chain. So naturally a secret feels like something of high value and we want to use that value to gain something. Humans will inevitably share secrets with other humans for the sake of creating bonds, because bonds still equal… survival. In the end our brains have only one goal: to survive and our brain makes its all its decisions based on that. Some people are more wired for personal survival and some are more wired for the survival of the tribe, of the human species. Bonding is such a powerful instrument in creating optimal circumstances for survival that people will eventually share them with those they want to bond with. Sharing a secret also makes us feel important – listen what I have just found out! – and we humans loooove to feel important.

Find the next ten life lessons in the next blog post.


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