Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Don't Sweat the Small Stuff

Following is only the contents list from Richard Carlson's 'Don't sweat the small stuff', but I believe the chapter titles are enough reminders in themselves!

Don’t sweat the small stuff
Make peace with imperfection
Let go of the idea that gentle, relaxed people can’t be superachievers
Be aware of the snowball effect of your thinking
Develop your compassion
Remind yourself that when you die, your “in basket” won’t be empty
Don’t interrupt others or finish their sentences
Do something nice for someone else—and don’t tell anyone about it
Let others have the glory
Learn to live in the present moment
Imagine that everyone is enlightened except you
Let others be “right” most of the time
Become more patient
Create “patience practice periods”
Be the first one to act loving or reach out
Ask yourself the question, “will this matter a year from now?”
Surrender to the fact that life isn’t fair
Allow yourself to be bored
Lower your tolerance to stress
Once a week, write a heartfelt letter
Imagine yourself at your own funeral
Repeat to yourself, “life isn’t an emergency”
Experiment with your back burner
Spend a moment every day thinking of someone to thank
Smile at strangers, look into their eyes, and say hello
Set aside quiet time, every day
Imagine the people in your life as tiny infants and as one-hundred-year-old adults
Seek first to understand
Become a better listener
Choose your battles wisely
Become aware of your moods and don’t allow yourself to be fooled by the low ones
Life is a test it is only a test
Praise and blame are all the same
Practice random acts of kindness
Look beyond behavior
See the innocence
Choose being kind over being right
Tell three people (today) how much you love them
Practice humility
When in doubt about whose turn it is to take out the trash go ahead and take it out
Avoid weatherproofing
Spend a moment, every day, thinking of someone to love
Become an anthropologist
Understand separate realities
Develop your own helping rituals
Every day, tell at least one person something you like, admire, or appreciate about them
Argue for your limitations, and they’re yours
Remember that everything has God’s fingerprints on it
Resist the urge to criticize
Write down your five most stubborn positions and see if you can soften them
Just for fun, agree with criticism directed toward you (then watch it go away)
Search for the grain of truth in other opinions
See the glass as already broken (and everything else too)
Understand the statement, “wherever you go, there you are”
Breathe before you speak
Be grateful when you’re feeling good and graceful when you’re feeling bad
Become a less aggressive driver
Adopt a child through the mail
Turn your melodrama into a mellow-drama
Read articles and books with entirely different points of view from your own and try to learn something
Do one thing at a time
Count to ten
Practice being in the “eye of the storm”
Be flexible with changes in your plans
Think of what you have instead of what you want
Practice ignoring your negative thoughts
Be willing to learn from friends and family
Be happy where you are
Remember that you become what you practice most
Quiet the mind
Take up yoga
Make service an integral part of your life
Do a favour and don’t ask for, or expect, one in return
Think of your problems as potential teachers
Get comfortable not knowing
Acknowledge the totality of your being
Cut yourself some slack
Stop blaming others
Become an early riser
When trying to be helpful, focus on little things
Remember, one hundred years from now, all new people
Lighten up
Nurture a plant
Transform your relationship to your problems
The next time you find yourself in an argument, rather than defend your position, see if you can see the other point of view first
Redefine a “meaningful accomplishment”
Listen to your feelings (they are trying to tell you something)
If someone throws you the ball, you don’t have to catch it
One more passing show
Fill your life with love
Realize the power of your own thoughts
Give up on the idea that “more is better”
Keep asking yourself, “what’s really important?"
Trust your intuitive heart
Be open to “what is”
Mind your own business
Look for the extraordinary in the ordinary
Schedule time for your inner work
Live this day as if it were your last – it might be!
Treasure yourself

The ones in bold are thoughts that I've mulled and chewed over and haven't yet digested, and possibly the topics of future blogposts.


  1. The last line should be the first on which you should blog.. 'Treasure Yourself'...
    Once we know ourselves.. we know God.. we know everything then.. and we are generally are in peace with everything after that..

  2. I've blogged something around that: http://spill-beans.blogspot.com/2011/06/must-we-love-ourselves.html

  3. When in doubt about whose turn it is to take out the trash go ahead and take it out

    ^ One of my favorites, actually :)

    This list was very comprehensive and deep. The keys to happiness are so easy...if we could only put aside our pride :)

    Thanks, jnana :D I needed this <3

  4. I should have read this at the start of my week shouldn't I? x

  5. Little Auntie, I especially like that one too, but I need to work alot on myself in this area. You're right- most of the problems that happen in life are usually a result of pride/arrogance/ego

    Sarah, never too late!


Contact Form


Email *

Message *