All in moderation.
It’s a good motto to have to guide you through life. It helps to keep you balanced, it helps to ward off things like addiction or obsession. It allows you to enjoy yourself without going overboard. It keeps your focused without grinding you too hard.
It helps you maintain healthy levels of … just about everything.
It’s an important thing to keep in mind when you’re enjoying things, to remind you not to overdo the things that are indulgences and forget to take care of your less fun responsibilities.
It’s an even more important thing to keep in mind when you’re taking on the more difficult and unpleasant things that life throws at you. It reminds you that they’re only temporary and eventually you’ll be able to just go back to having fun and give yourself a reward for getting through it.
It’s the kind of advice that can be applied to practically any situation and still be appropriate.
While moderation breaks its own rule in that you can never have too much of it, there are few other things that only enrich your life no matter how much you get.
Read everything you can, talk to strangers on the bus, learn things, explore new worlds, see things from any other eyes you can get behind. Empathise with other people’s experiences. Walk in other people’s shoes. See if you can figure out what it’s like not to be a person at all. Stories help to shape you. Stories help you grow without you having to go through that experience yourself. You can spend your whole life learning and never know a fraction of what there is to know. Soak up as much of everyone else’s stories – true, fiction and fantasy – as you possibly can.
Dancing is an expression of pure joy. If you want to get up and dance in a public place, then you should absolutely do it and no one has the right to tell you not to. If you’re lucky enough that your life has a music all its own, then you should indulge it at every possible opportunity. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.
Perhaps not the kind of engineered music that comes from the bigger, more corporate labels, but the majority of music genuinely comes from the heart. It’s a finely honed craft that takes a hell of a lot of talent to do consistently well. That, combined with the heartfelt, beautiful things that connect to so many listeners, make music such an incredible thing for humanity to have accomplished. Explore it as much as you can. Hear what other people create, connect to other people through it, feel it strike you in the deepest, most personal parts of your psyche and revel in the things that all people sometimes seem to have in common.
There is never a situation when compassion will not make the right decision for you. There is never a time when someone else’s compassion won’t be a great help to you. Sometimes the world can be cruel and horrible and it can make you wonder why it’s worth bothering to be compassionate at all when everything seems so bleak. But it is true that you should be the change you wish to see if you’re ever going to change the world. Bring compassion to everything you do – into every decision, every interaction, every moment.
Author Bio – Kirstie Summers is journalist whose day job takes her to all the most interesting places and events in South London. She also freelances for a number of sites and publications, from gaming and literature reviews to creative fiction. She lives in London and spends as much of her free time as possible making the most of being in such a diverse city. She keeps one day a week to herself to swim, relax and keep the stress of the world at bay.