Life Lessons I Learned in 2021

What a year 2021 has been.

At the end of each year, I try to slow down and reflect on what went well and what didn’t, and what I need to improve the next year. 

Here are a few lessons I learned in 2021.

Developing self-discipline takes time and it consists of thousands of small decisions made every day. Whether you choose to take stairs instead of the elevator, you develop discipline, whether you choose water instead of soda, that too is discipline. Doing your work is discipline. Choosing healthy food instead of fast food is a discipline too.

Having time for yourself is crucial. For me it’s mornings. For you might be evenings. Having a scheduled block of uninterrupted “me time” will do wonders for your life.

Hardships contain lessons. Struggles and challenges that seem to reappear in your life have one objective – to teach you a lesson, and they will keep repeating until that lesson is learned.

We are all lost sometimes. Trust me, no one knows what they are doing. If you find yourself overwhelmed with choices, don’t overthink. Choose a direction and keep moving forward. Actions bring clarity.

Sometimes life sucks. Let it be. It has a lesson. No need to be artificially happy about it. If it sucks it sucks.

Only invest in the fields you know something about. Otherwise your investment could turn into a very expensive lesson.

Don’t be serious all the time. You’re dying. Sooner or later. Have fun. Act like a child sometimes. Life is too short to be taken seriously all the time.

Your path will change. If you are not completely happy, you have the right to leave the path you’re on and go forward a new direction. The clock is ticking and time is against you. Something that doesn’t serve you must be removed or changed.

Nothing is permanent. The only constant is change. Your job is to adapt and respond in a way that does not compromise your core values and philosophy of life.

You are not entitled to anything. What was given to you can be taken away at any time. Money, job, health, love, etc. If you lose something stop asking why it happened to you and start asking what’s next.

Surrender and accept. The easiest way to improve your life is to give up expectations.

5-5-5. What are the consequences of my decision in the next 5 minutes? In 5 months? And in 5 years?

When someone enters the room, put the phone down. It may be just a small gesture (which may go unnoticed), but it shows that people are more important than technology.

Simplify. It’s always easy to add something. Another color to your website, a new shirt to your wardrobe, an app to your smartphone, another gadget, book, feature, subscription, etc. But all this creates mental fog and adds complexity to your life. Complexity you don’t need because your life is already too busy. Simplify. Your decisions, stuff, environment, work, and relationships. It’s about taking things away that creates beauty.

Accept the world as it is or suffer internal resistance. You are not in control. Me neither. Economy, politics, weather, people, and many other things are outside of your control and you have to accept that in order to live peacefully.

Questions > answers. The questions you ask are more important than the answers you get. Stay curious. Ask the right questions.

You get what you ask for. If you want to apply for that high-paying job you need to ask for it. If you want to date a beautiful girl who’s stopping you? (Answer: you).

Exhaustion isn’t a badge of honor, it’s a badge of stupidity. Having an empty calendar, plenty of time for yourself and your loved ones is the ultimate achievement in life.

What you surround yourself with matters. You are only as strong as the environment around you. Surround yourself with better people, food, information, energy, and ideals. If you surround yourself with champions, winners, healthy, hardworking, honest, and knowledgeable people, you’ll become one too.

Challenge yourself daily. Death is coming for you, sooner or later. Don’t die before you’re dead. Take chances. Challenge yourself. Make something beautiful.

The world is an amazing and horrible place. It depends on how you look at it.

Take extreme ownership. There will always be things that are not under your control. Weather, economy, other people, natural disasters. Bad things will happen, you can’t control that. What you can control is your attitude. Take full responsibility, suck it up, and do the right thing.

Your future depends on your ability to learn fast. Don’t just focus on learning a specific thing, most likely it will be irrelevant soon. Instead, focus on learning how to learn things fast, and you’ll own your future.

Productivity boils down to two things: clarity (knowing what to work on) and focus (working on it). Everything else is just a distraction. You don’t need the best pen, a podcast on productivity, perfect notes app, etc. What you do need is action.

A great partner makes everything else easier. In business, gym, and life. You’ll be more inspired and motivated with someone similar to support you and pick you up when you’re down.

Cherish every moment. Life can end any second. Tomorrow you might not be around.

Take care of your body every day. You only have one body and you will have to spend the rest of your life in it. Eat more vegetables and fruits. Drink more water. Make regular exercise a priority. Sleep at least 7 hours per night. Choose healthy habits.

Books are the ultimate mentors in life. It’s foolish not to read. To change and improve your life, start with those.

Learn to breathe. Breath is the only thing that stays with you from the moment you’re born until the moment you die. You may think you know how to breathe, but you would be wrong. Breath is powerful, don’t believe me? When you get stressed, what is the first thing that changes? Your breath. When you get angry – what changes? Your breath. 

We experience every emotion with the change of our breath. When you learn to navigate and manage your breath, you can navigate any situation life presents to you.

Life doesn’t change overnight. Think of small daily actions you can take that will eventually compound and lead to significant changes.

Appreciate what you have today. Think of your health, relationships, experiences, memories, and achievements. Is it something you dreamed of once?

Always believe in yourself. If you don’t, who will?

 

How was 2021 for you? I’m curious to find out what did you learn this year?

Let me know in the comments below.

 

Happy New Year!

 

Cheers!

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