A Few Rules For A Rich Life (with Caveats)

  1. Get a job. If you can’t find one, make one up and go for it. If you can’t do this, volunteer. Volunteering often leads to paid jobs.
  2. Work your butt off. That is, throw yourself completely and enthusiastically into whatever you are doing.
  3. Rest frequently. Even a 5 minute eyes-closed phone-turned-off door-locked DO NOT DISTURB rest can refresh and heal you like nobody’s business.
  4. Cultivate your friendships. Gardens and friendships both require feeding, watering, weeding, and (occasionally) hard pruning in order to stay healthy.
  5. Don’t blame others for your mistakes. On the other hand, don’t blame yourself for your mistakes, either. Simply accept that you are human, and have made a mistake, and resolve to learn from it so your pain is not repeated.
  6. Notice, and release, “us-them” thinking wherever possible. 
  7. Don’t despair. It’s the nature of reality to change frequently, and there are no last chances for happiness even on your deathbed.
  8. Cultivate gratitude. However resentfully and reluctantly, make a conscious daily effort to notice at least one blessing in your life.
  9. Make a sincere effort, then release the need to control the results.
  10. Ask for what you really want, not what you think you can get.
  11. Budget.
  12. Make the most of the opportunities you have instead of wasting energy wishing you had better ones.
  13. Keep looking for better ones.
  14. Don’t lie, even when they do.
  15. Don’t sign anything you don’t understand. Don’t be ashamed to ask for explanations.
  16. Try to do as good a job in the small things as you do in the large.
  17. Don’t criticize others behind their backs. If you can’t find something good to say, hum.
  18. If in doubt about what decision to make, consider putting off the decision for 3 minutes, 3 hours, 3 days, 3 weeks, 3 months, or 3 years. By that time either the situation will have resolved itself, another opportunity will have arisen, or you will have been shown what to do.
  19. Keep your numbers. That is, keep track of how much money you earn and how much money you spend from day to day, so that at the end of the month you have a better idea of your spending patterns, and how to revise your budget in light of those patterns.
  20. Encourage the young, but don’t preach to them.
  21. When you make a mistake, ask, “What can I do differently next time?” The only failures are those who refuse to learn from failure.
  22. Exercise, however feebly. It soothes depression and sharpens the mind.
  23. Drink lots of water.
  24. Trust yourself.
  25. Don’t say “Yes” when you want to say “No”, and vice versa.
  26. Ask for help. Keep on asking as many sources as you can until you get that help you need.
  27. Don’t waste time worrying about your enemies. Divine Love and Truth will handle them if you let It, either by turning them into your friends or making their influence on your life irrelevant.
  28. Respect good teachers, but eschew guru-worship. No teacher or authority figure embodies Divine Love and Truth perfectly or completely.
  29. Relax. Tense muscles bruise easily, and so do tense minds and hearts.

 

The Ruling Passion Exercise

ImageThe Ruling Passion Exercise is designed to help you clarify what it is you really want in a life, date, relationship, career, job, vacation, pet, community, home, religion, garden—anything you can imagine. My clients and I have found it useful because like many folks, we often confuse what we really, truly want deep down with what we think we really want, what peers, bosses, coworkers, family, life-partner and society tell us we should want, and what we think we can get.

The Ruling Passion Exercise is based on the idea that we all come into physical reality to create certain experiences for ourselves, experiences which, if left unfulfilled, may cause us to feel that we have wasted our lives. This exercise is also based on the idea that we each have a Greater Self who knows what we really want, and is constantly seeking to nudge us toward the experiences that will give us the greatest joy and satisfaction.

It’s not enough to have a dream. We must also know what experiences we wish that dream to give us. Armed with such knowledge, we can work out a practical strategy for translating our dream into physical reality without having to waste years of effort following false trails.

The Ruling Passion Exercise

Copy the following form onto your desktop or onto a sheet of paper.

WHAT I REALLY WANT IN MY IDEAL_____________________________________________

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Instructions:

  1. Set a timer for 5-10 minutes.
  2. At the top of the form fill in the blank following the title phrase WHAT I REALLY WANT IN MY IDEAL (career, life-partner, vacation, etc). I.e., write down the general category of dream you would like to clarify in this exercise.
  3. Start the timer.
  4. Beginning with line 1 above, list all the physical, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual pleasures, benefits, experiences, or qualities you would like from your exercise’s chosen topic in an ideal world. This last is very important. Forget about past failures or successes. Set aside just for the 5-10 minutes of the exercise all the reasons why you imagine you cannot have what you really want: your age (“I’m too old!”), looks (“I’m too fat!”), money (“I’m too poor!”), status (“I have too many people depending on me”), level of ability (“I flunked out”), character shortcomings (“I’m too lazy”), fears (“What if I fail? I’ll be a laughing stock”), and self-condemnations (“I’m too much of a screw-up; nothing like this could ever happen to me”).
  5. Write as quickly as you can, with as little self-editing as possible. Don’t be alarmed if some of the things you write down are “politically incorrect”, shocking, or unexpected. When you run out of ideas, stop.
  6. If you have not listed twenty-one, ask yourself, “Am I really being honest with myself?” If you can’t think of anything to list at all, ask yourself, “Whom do I know or have read about who has the successes, qualities, or experiences I would like to incorporate into my dream?” If you still can’t think of twenty-one things you want our of your ideal dream, try turning the exercise on its head: try listing twenty-one things you would hate your dream to bring you. Then write down next to these hates their opposites. (You may also set aside the exercise for a day or so and return to it.)

Next: Evaluating Your Ruling Passion List