Self Improvement


Laughing At Yourself

Laughing at yourself is a hard humor skill to develop, however there are some steps to follow to be able to strategically desensitize yourself:

  • Figure out what's funny for you and surround yourself with more of it
  • Liste down the things you don't like about yourself
  • Arrange the list from least sensitive to most, then read it to someone before cracking jokes
  • Come up with a few self-referential jokes from the least sensitive until you work yourself up to the most.



Self Improvement

If you do not have the right mindset to perform or develop this humor (laughing at yourself), then you will most likely only end up depressed, angry, and end up with lower self-esteem.

The underlying mindset to have should be playful and aim to make self-deprecating jokes instead of self-disparaging ones. Sometimes it also okay to keep the jokes for yourself, it doesn't always have to be performative.

Positivity for better health

Research suggests that happiness and optimism influence positive life outcomes as much as it is a byproduct.

In a study, enthusiastic, cheerful people experienced less memory decline with age. A positive outlook boosts immune responses while reducing the likelihood of heart attacks or other coronary problems.

Research shows that people typically use language to inject a positivity bias. They also found that people generally use more happy words than sad words.

Being around happy, enthusiastic people makes us happier and more enthusiastic ourselves, leading to less stress and increased energy.

Rather than asking how we can get happier, we should ask how we can make people around us happy. Positive changes in your life will have a ripple effect on others.

If emotions are contagious, so are positive social connections.

Researchers found that social relationships, social support, and social acceptance helped develop positive self-esteem throughout people's lives. A positive feedback loop accumulates over time.

We should not ignore life's difficulties or even view every rain cloud as a cotton-candy-laced fantasy. Without realism, positivity can become dangerous to our well-being.

One study found that participants who set realistic expectations had higher well-being than those who set unrealistic expectations based on overly positive attitudes. Being realistic about your future can bring a sense of well-being.

Leonardo da Vinci
"For once you have tasted flight you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skywards, for there you have been and there you will long to return."
"It had long since come to my attention that people of accomplishment rarely sat back and let things happen to them. They went out and happened to things."
"I have been impressed with the urgency of doing. Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Being willing is not enough; we must do."
"Learning never exhausts the mind."
"The acquisition of knowledge is always of use to the intellect, because it may thus drive out useless things and retain the good. For nothing can be loved or hated unless it is first known."
"Every now and then go away, have a little relaxation, for when you come back to your work your judgment will be surer. Go some distance away because then the work appears smaller and more of it can be taken in at a glance and a lack of harmony and proportion is more readily seen."
"Nature never breaks her own laws."
"Study without desire spoils the memory, and it retains nothing that it takes in."
"Patience serves as a protection against wrongs as clothes do against cold. For if you put on more clothes as the cold increases, it will have no power to hurt you. So in like manner you must grow in patience when you meet with great wrongs, and they will then be powerless to vex your mind."
Accountability works best when it comes from the outside

Accountability is an important tool for making and breaking habits.

You’re more likely to exercise if you’ve made a plan to walk with a friend or scheduled a workout with a personal trainer.

  • Choose a friend who wants to achieve a similar goal (an accountability buddy) and make a plan. Accountability might mean checking-in once or twice a week to see how you’re doing.
  • An app is a great way to add accountability to your day, because they send daily reminders and track your progress.
  • Hold yourself accountable by creating calendar reminders.
  • Create virtual accountability. When you declare your goals on social media, you’re likely to find a like-minded friend who will want to join your journey and offer words of support.
Gretchen Rubin
“We do better when someone’s watching. Even when we’re the ones doing the watching!”
How to make huge improvements

If you want to improve your life, you have to be committed and start from the right foundation.

The typical person could make considerable improvements in less than a year.

The productivity system is not just about getting more work done - it's about organising all of your goals and efforts.

When it comes to self-improvement, people can face two problems:

  • They don't feel they have enough time or energy.
  • They fail to follow through.

A productivity system, built correctly, solves both of these problems.

Exercise sharpens your mind and improves your mood. It is also entirely under your control.

It is recommended that you start with an exercise schedule that involves exercising at the same time every weekday so that it quickly becomes a habit. If you feel you are too busy, focus on high-intensity workouts for 20-30 minutes at a time.

Read 30 minutes, each day

Working towards any goal is the most important thing you can do. The second most important is to read books about how to do it better.

Every person can read thirty minutes per day during the in-between times in their schedule. You can commit more, but you shouldn't commit less.

Writing expands our memory by giving us a buffer to store thoughts before they fade from our memory. Writing also enables self-reflection. When you write down a long series of thoughts and then read it, you simultaneously articulate an idea and critique it.

Write weekly in your notebook about your current struggles, ambitions or plans.

Ensure that you speak with someone who is ahead of you in at least one dimension of their life, once per week. If you're working on your health, have a conversation with the person who is fit at the gym.

The biggest mistake we can make with self-improvement is to be too introverted.

Write down whenever you spend money on anything. A spreadsheet can be used to track your spending.

The good life is easier to attain if you're able to budget for it, such as using saved money to buy books.

For many, the major obstacles to the good life is the abundance of temptations keeping us in the same place:

  1. Put up barriers that constrain the activity within predetermined limits.
  2. Make a rule. "Only one episode of television per day."
  3. Use the power of consistent conditioning. "I only use social media on weekends." Now you won't think of checking it on a weekday.
  4. Set barriers that prevent you from engaging. Use an app to control social media websites.
  5. Set barriers you can't easily overcome. Give your friend the password to unblock your social media, so you can't disable it.

Set yourself a time for bed and a wake time. Then stick to it. A consistent sleeping schedule allows you to predictably plan all the other things you intend to do.

  • Don't hit the snooze button, but practice getting up immediately.
  • Set aside the hour before bed for reading, journaling or quiet hobbies. It will make falling asleep easier.
  • Keep the same wake time on weekends as it is much easier to maintain.

Having a big project you're always working on helps to keep all the other foundational practices together. A project that will last 1-2 years works best to maximize effort.

Four major kinds of projects that can be rotated are career projects, learning projects, fitness projects, and creating projects.

This could be a new restaurant, a new activity, event, or just walking in a part of town you've never been to before.

A problem of productivity is that we tend to stick to activities we know are rewarding and tend to avoid trying new things that may be a waste of time. Adding some randomness in your calendar may offer profound results.

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