30 Lessons for Living by Karl Pillemer

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  • Lessons for a happy marriage
    • Marry someone a lot like you (particularly when it comes to core values).
    • Friendship is as important as romantic love.
    • Don't keep score.
    • Talk to each other.
    1. If you are having trouble discussing something, get out of the house.
    2. Find a way to blow off steam, and then engage with your partner.
    3. Watch out for teasing.
    4. Let your partner have his or her say.
    5. Don't just commit to your partner—commit to marriage itself.
    • Postscript: Don't go to bed angry.
  • Lessons for a successful and fulfilling career
    • Choose a career for the intrinsic rewards, not the financial ones.
    • Don't give up on looking for a job that makes you happy.
    • Make the most of a bad job.
    • Emotional intelligence trumps every other kind.
    • Everyone needs autonomy.
  • Lessons for a lifetime of parenting
    • It's all about time. Life really is short.
    • It's normal to have favorites, but never show it.
    • Don't hit your kids.
    • Avoid a rift at all costs.
    1. See the potential rift early and defuse it.
    2. Act immediately after the rift occurs.
    3. When all else fails, it's the parent who usually needs to compromise.
    4. Take a lifelong view of relationships with children.
    • Postscript: Abandon looking for perfection—in your children and in your parenting.
  • Lessons for aging fearlessly and well
    • Being old is much better than you think.
    • Act now like you will need your body for a hundred years.
    • Don't worry about dying—the "experts" don't.
    • Stay connected to people.
    1. Take advantage of learning opportunities.
    2. Make a conscious goal of staying connected.
    3. Plan ahead about where you will live (and your parents, too).
    • Postscript: Abandon the fight against aging. Denial is our own worst enemy.
  • Lessons for living a life without regrets
    • Always be honest.
    • Say yes to opportunities.
    • Travel more.
    • Choose a mate with extreme care.
    • Say it now. If you have something to say to someone, do it before it's too late.
  • Lessons for living like an expert (Choose happiness)
    • Time is of the essence.
    • Happiness is a choice, not a condition.
    • Time spent worrying is time wasted.
    1. Focus on the short term rather than the long term.
    2. Instead of worrying, prepare.
    3. Acceptance is an antidote to worry.
    4. Think small. Focus on the joys of everyday life.
    5. Have faith. If only because it's good for you.
    • Postscript: Follow the Golden Rule—treat people the way you want to be treated.

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