Are you coming off a disappointment or finding it difficult to get excited about life? Then this may be just the medicine you need. In his book, ‘Let’s Talk’, author Art Rios describes his keys to an exceptional life. In a series of talks he shows us how to take a simpler approach, generate excitement and dramatically improve our lives as a result.
The book in a nutshell
Are you working towards a goal but haven’t yet achieved it? Do you have a dream that’s yet to be realised? Are you delaying happiness and fun until they happen? The author in a series of conversations urges us to work on creating an exciting life right now. He gives a number of ideas on how to grab the bull by the horns and make life more thrilling today.
Make the pursuit of pleasure a priority
This is a reminder that now is the time. It’s a call to live each day to the fullest as long as you do it with moderation, discretion, and a care for others.
So what are pleasures? They can be anything from creating a happy home to travelling the world, making new friends to reading and learning. Anything that makes you joyful or relaxed counts and YOU get to decide what they are.
Even so, pursuing pleasures isn’t just about consuming but extends to giving as well. That could be sharing your time, skills and resources or showing kindness and caring to others. There’s just one caveat, pursue pleasures but not at the expense of or by harming others.
If you think you’re not good enough you sabotage your ability to go for and achieve your dreams. This talk is a reminder to accept yourself and realise that you have everything you need to succeed. When you embrace your unique gifts and talents and go for what truly matters to you, you are on the path to an exceptional life.
Find opportunity in crisis
Going through a crisis can be scary and difficult but it also presents opportunities. This talk highlights that when you face adversity it is possible to shift your perspective, to see it as a chance to learn new ways of coping and even thriving.
A crisis can force you to focus on what truly matters and to put aside the trivial. It’s also a reminder that no matter how bad things are for you, there’s someone out there who’s going through worse.
The more freedom you have the easier life becomes and that hinges on eliminating the unessential. If you think about it, few things are true necessities. This talk encourages you to embrace living with less and to let go of a lot of what we all tend to accumulate. It’s about (in the author’s words) decluttering, simplifying, and minimizing.
Freedom has wonderful side benefits: fewer things to fix, maintain, pay for or worry about. That can only move you closer to a happier life. It isn’t a call to stop acquiring anything but a reminder not to want and acquire everything.
A few times a year set aside a hundred hours (roughly four days) to ‘check out of life’ and check in with yourself. You have nothing to fear except your own company and it’s a chance for introspection, reflection and self-evaluation.
It’s an opportunity to regain or change perspective and reassess your goals and plans. It’s also an ideal time to read, meditate and even come up with new ideas. The author put it best when he said: ‘It will ultimately make you more grounded and in touch with what matters both during your hundred hours of solitude and beyond.’
Cultivate gratitude and kindness
Gratitude is the cornerstone, the practice of being thankful for what you have and not stressing about what you don’t. It’s about enjoying what you have accomplished instead of worrying about what you’ve missed out on or what someone else has. Kindness is its complement. It costs nothing yet has the power to transform a life. It can fill you with a positive energy that inspires hope, love and caring.
Kindness and gratitude, according to the author are foundational to an exceptional life.
This is a quick read and somewhat repetitive in parts but easy to digest. It gives some simple, fun and easy-to-apply nuggets on how to start living a more simple and joyous life.
Are you feeling stuck, dissatisfied and need some ideas on how to get moving again? Engage in Art Rios’ conversations, it may provide the spark you need in your life right now.