What Advice Would You Give Your Past Self?

Imagine you could communicate with a younger version of yourself. What age would you choose, and what advice would you give you past self?

After dealing with the pandemic for nearly a year, it might be tempting to give a little heads up to yourself as you are going in to lockdown. Would you suggest stocking up on toilet paper? Get used to wearing a mask? Hug your loved ones while you can?

On the other hand, an older, and presumably wiser, you might talk to  a teenage version of yourself. Would you suggest learning a particular skill? Maybe having a certain experience? Or perhaps avoiding a certain experience?

Alternately, you might have something to say to you as you enter the workforce. Or some advice on your wedding day. Or when your child is about to be born.

What age would you choose, and what would you say?

Finally, is there anything that your present self can learn from what you would like to tell your younger self?

Related questions: What was the best time in your life? What’s the most useful thing you’ve ever learned? Past, present, or future? What is the worst job you’ve ever had?

What Are The Best Things That Happened To You In 2020?

Can you recognize the good things that happened to you in a bad year? Being grateful for what you have can save you from despair.

The year 2020 has been bad in a number of ways. Our natural world was devastated by disasters like wildfires or hurricanes. Racial unrest led to protests, which spawned riots. A contentious political season saw election results questioned, and as a result our very democracy trembled.

Oh yes, and a pandemic swept across the globe, infecting tens of millions and killing well over a million people worldwide. Reactions to this ravaged our economy and changed life as we know it.

And yet, even in the worst circumstances, good things happen. They may be small, or fleeting, or personal. But these good things happen, and recognizing the good things that occur can give us hope in a seemingly hopeless situation.

So at the end of the year, what are some of the good things that happened to you? It is likely that you can point out dozens of ways that your life has been impacted for the worse. But can you think of ways it has gotten better?

What is the best thing that happened to you in 2020?

Related questions: Are there unexpected benefits to what we are going through? What are you grateful for? What are you optimistic about? Why should we be hopeful?

 

Is Life Today Better Than In The Past?

If you were able to accurately evaluate life today against life one hundred years ago, one thousand years ago, or even 10 thousand years ago, would we be able to determine which is better?

Humans have a tendency to overvalue what they know. We find it easy to believe that our country is the best. Or that our mother’s cooking can’t be beat. The neighborhood we grew up in was better than any other.

Similarly, we may believe that life today is better than the way people lived in centuries past. But is that actually true?

It is certainly true that our mastery of travel makes just about every corner of the globe is accessible. I can pack a bag, catch a flight, and be halfway around the world within 24 hours. (Assuming, of course, no travel restrictions.)

A trip to an average grocery store yields a remarkable variety of produce, and an almost dizzying array of processed food. The internet makes access to information nearly ubiquitous, and allows us to communicate with people without thought to geographical limitations. Lifespans are longer, literacy rates are higher, some previously deadly diseases have been all but eliminated.

However, each of these things have downsides. Easy travel is at the expense of burning fossil fuels, which is contributing to climate change. The same can be said about produce that travels thousands of miles to those well-stocked grocery stores. And all that processed food has brought about a crisis in obesity.

While communication is easier with the internet, social media apps are making us more polarized and as such we hear each other less. What good is a longer lifespan if we use those extra hours sitting in traffic jams and overall leading more stressed lifestyles?

Are the negatives worth the positives? Is life today better than in the past?

Related questions: How have we changed? Past, present, or future? Is it fair to judge the past with morals of today? Are we too busy?

 

Perfect Or Good Enough?

As the old adage goes, “Don’t make the perfect the enemy of the good.” Are you a perfectionist, or can you move on once something is good enough?

Share why if you wish.

Perfect Or Good Enough?

What Is Greatness?

We all know people who exhibit greatness. Maybe someone you know personally, through their work, or from history. But what makes them great?

There are many ways to achieve greatness as an individual. Someone might be a leader, or an innovative scientist. It might manifest as an influential artist, or an accomplished athlete. Or even a person who does just one thing, but does it extremely well.

Is there something these individuals have in common? Is there a trait that you recognize as being great in another person? Do you try to develop that trait, or something similar, in yourself?

What is greatness?

Related questions: What is important? How do you judge yourself? Which historical figure would you like to meet? What gives a person value? What makes a good leader?