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Book Review

7 Great Lessons From Byways to Blessedness By James Allen

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Although Byways to Blessedness was written in 1904, the book is still useful today. In the book, James Allen provides advice that enables readers to live a wonderful life. He encourages readers to find happiness by avoiding negative states of mind as they lead to suffering. Also, he enlightens readers on the importance of difficulties and solitude.

Anyway, there are many lessons James Allen provides in the book, but here are the lessons I loved the most.

  1. How You Begin Your Day Matters

How you begin your day matters because it determines how your day will be. Your day will be filled with joy if you begin it wisely and joyfully, and you might have a bad day if you start it with a poor attitude.

  1. How to be Great

If you want to be great, you must sacrifice pride because it prevents you from doing the things that will make you great. Besides this, you must be willing to dedicate all your mind and energy on one thing, and you must avoid focusing on the outcome.

  1. The True Nature of Difficulty

According to James Allen, difficulty exists in the mind, and that’s why a difficult experience for a child might be easy for an adult.

He also teaches that difficulty fosters growth and development because it forces us to exercise our intelligence and awaken our hidden powers.

  1. The Negative Effects of Resentfulness

Resentfulness causes suffering because it prevents you from attaining true enlightenment. Moreover, it hardens your heart and prevents you from receiving the blessings meant for you.

Furthermore, it makes you suffer because it causes a troubled mind and makes you remember the bad things some people did to you.

  1. See No Evil And You’ll Free Yourself From Suffering and Sorrow

According to James Allen, you free yourself from suffering and sorrow when you stop judging people from your viewpoint of what’s right and wrong; when you realize that people have their personal viewpoints which make them do certain things, and that everybody thinks that whatever he or she is doing is necessary for them.

  1. The Secret to Joy

James Allen believes it’s possible to find abiding joy while here on earth because you are responsible for creating joy in your life. He believes you can find joy by being selfless because selfishness results in suffering. He also teaches that you can find joy by avoiding the attachment to things and loving everyone.

  1. The Importance of Solitude

Solitude is necessary for your spiritual life as sleep is necessary for your body. Solitude is so important that lacking it can result in a spiritual break down. It enables you to find the strength, wisdom, and knowledge needed to overcome life’s hardships. Moreover, it enables you to realize your true self and the hidden powers or possibilities within you.

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Book Review

10 Main Lessons from Ego is the Enemy by Ryan Holiday

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Ego is the Enemy, by Ryan Holiday, explains how the Ego leads to failure and how it makes it difficult for individuals to maintain success. Last week, I shared 40 Amazing quotes from the book. Today, I’ll share the main lessons from Ryan Holiday’s amazing book.

1.Too Much Talk About Your Work Depletes You

People love talking too much about their work because they are unaware of the negative effect of excessive talk.

Excessive talking decreases insights and provides a false sense of achievement. It also makes you think you’ve worked hard towards your goals.

2.You Must Adopt a Student Mindset

You must adopt a student’s mindset because there’s so much to learn in your career. You adopt a student mindset by striving to learn from everyone and looking for areas to improve on a daily basis. The student mindset allows you to quickly improve your skills and find better methods of working.

3.Attach Yourself to People Who Achieved Success in Your Field

Associating with people that have succeeded in your field helps to eradicate your ego because it enlightens you that some people are more skilled than you. Besides, you learn a lot from these individuals and quickly achieve success when you work with them. 

4.Practice Self-Control on Your Journey to Success

You must practice self-control when pursuing success because bad things will happen on your journey. For instance, many people will treat you poorly regardless of your socio-economic status, and you’ll be forced to work behind the scenes.

5.The Dangers of Pride

Pride makes you miss opportunities because it prevents you from establishing reliable relationships. Besides, it awakens your negative aspects and eradicates the desire to learn from others.

6.Know What You Want In Life

It’s easier to succeed if you know what you want because this knowledge enables you to avoid distractions. Furthermore, knowing what you want prevents you from desiring what successful people own because you’ll realize that your goal is more important than their possessions.

7.Maintain Your Sobriety When Things Get Better

Maintain sobriety when success starts approaching by avoiding behavior that reinforces the ego. This behavior includes obsessing with your self-image, despising people, desiring better treatment, and over-focusing on your self-anointed importance.

8.Ego Betrays You When Things Get Difficult

Ego prevents you from overcoming difficulty because it focuses on the negative side of difficulties. It also discourages you and provides sensible excuses that prevent you from overcoming difficulty.  As Ryan Holiday puts it, ‘ego says; I knew you couldn’t do it. Why did you ever try? It claims: This isn’t worth. This isn’t fair. This is somebody’s else’s problem. Why don’t you come up with a good excuse and wash your hands of this? It tells us we shouldn’t have to put up with this. It tells us that we’re not the problem.’

9.Choose Alive Time during Failure

During failure, you must choose ‘alive time’ by dedicating every second to improving your skills and using your surroundings to create a better situation.

10.Always Love

Avoid hate because, as Ryan Holiday puts it, ‘it is a cancer that gnaws away at the very vital center of your life and existence.’ Embrace love because it enables you to quickly move on and avoid the distractions associated with investigating the wrongs committed against you.

There are many great lessons from Ego is the Enemy, you must read the book to access them all. Anyway, thanks for reading.

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Book Review

8 Nuggets of Wisdom from the Four Agreements by Don Ruiz

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In his book, The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom, Don Ruiz, provides wonderful pieces of advice that will help you find freedom. The book is enlightening, and all individuals in search of true happiness should read it.

Here are seven nuggets of wisdom I learned from the book.

  1. We Always Domesticate Our Children

According to Don Ruiz, children are domesticated the same way animals are domesticated. We domesticate them by punishing them when they go against our rules and rewarding them when they obey us. They then grow up with a certain belief and behavioral system that is forced upon them.

  1. Our Belief System Guides Our Thoughts And Actions

We all have a set of beliefs that guide our thoughts and actions. These beliefs determine whether we’ll be positive or negative thinkers, and where we’ll end up in life.

  1. Why Your Beliefs Have the Power to Guide You

Your beliefs have the power to guide you because you believe they are true. You completely trust them hence allowing them to determine your thoughts, decisions, and actions.

  1. Our Biggest Fear is to Be Authentic

We avoid showing the world our true nature because our biggest fear is to be ourselves. Little do we know that most people who achieve personal freedom and true success are authentic. They never fear expressing who they truly are.

  1. Be Careful With Your Word

You must be careful with your word because it influences other people’s actions and attitudes. Your friend can start loving herself passionately if you constantly tell her that she is a wonderful being. Conversely, the same friend can dislike herself if you constantly tell her that she’s an ugly loser.

  1. Don’t Take Things Personally

Taking things people say personally shows that you agree with what they say. Stop agreeing with everything people say about you because whatever people say comes from their personal viewpoint. It’s all about them, and not you.

Taking things personally will waste your time and energy because you’ll keep thinking why some people said some things about you, and how you’ll get back at them.

  1. Stop Making Assumptions

Most of us make assumptions that eventually hurt us. For instance, we love making assumptions about our friends, spouses, and relatives. We assume they know what hurts and what doesn’t hurt us, and we get offended when they do something that hurts us.

  1. Always Do Your Best

Do your best because by doing so you’ll avoid guilt and regret as you’ll love yourself, and you’ll be more fruitful. Don Ruiz defines doing your best as enjoying the action you take without expecting rewards. You, therefore, know you are doing your best when you are working while not thinking about payday.

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