I always have a problem with self-help books. According to me they are an oxymoron. If you can help yourself, why would we need a book? Self help truly works when you make up rules as you go along, willing to change them when the equations change, because there’s no you set in stone inside you, there’s just possibilities of different yous. Yet, it often helps to note down the rules you came across or made in the course of a year, for your own reference. I’ve chosen the number 36 for this year. The rules are utterly random and purely mine, but they have been derived by osmosis and then changed to suit my agenda. One of my ancestors must have been a sponge, because I take in everything, the good, the bad, the mean and the charming but a sponge becomes heavy with osmosis. Once a year, one should wring it out by writing.

36 rules for better living in 2017.

Rule No. 1 – The world is divided into the truly extraordinary and the blah. If you aren’t truly extraordinary, it doesn’t matter what degree of blah you are. In essence, it frees you to be and do whatever you want to, because you cannot be anything else even if you tried. You can be totally free if you get this one insight.

Rule 2: The world isn’t going to change for the better if you let everything that is fucked up about it get under your skin. If you can’t do anything about it, it isn’t really your problem to begin with.

Rule 3: The book secret got it wrong though it had the right idea. You do not get what you want if you wish for it with all your will and intent and heart and belief. The only way to get what you want is to live as if you already have it, like a king. You may not get it still but you will notice that it does not matter.

Rule 4: Be attentive. Be observant. Be where you are totally, be there. You’ll soon notice that people are attracted to you like a magnet, because they can instantly know you listen. This is one of the most important rules if you actually get the insight.

Rule 5: If you do not wear the right shoes with your attire, it will ALWAYS ruin the look.

Rule 6: A laugh should sound like a laugh and not a smile. Laugh really loudly when you laugh for pleasure. Like HAHAHA.

Rule 7: Do not go searching for quixotic possibilities. Striving and struggling towards reaching quixotic windmills isnt hard work, its laziness. But if opportunities pop up, grab them by the scruff of the neck without dilly dallying.

Rule 8: Do not get into the habit of sex only at night or only in a fixed routine pattern like most married couples. You will notice moods and opportunities you never would otherwise.

Rule 9: Always try to finish a holiday and return on Saturday night or Sunday morning so that you have time to recuperate before Monday steps on your door.

Rule 10: Keep your hands and feet always clean and presentable. Those who are well groomed never look ugly.

Rule 11: If you find a particular trait in a loved one annoying but it can’t be changed, do not nag them about it.

Rule 12: Keep some mystery about yourself. If you speak every thought aloud, you will end up swimming in cesspools. Besides, not every silence needs to be filled all the time.

Rule 13: Have strong opinions about things. Those who do not have any end up being second hand opinionaors. But feel free to change your mind. Your opinions aren’t set in stone.

Rule 14: Compartmentalize your relationships. Keep them utterly separate. Know how much to give in each one and when to stop going overboard.

Rule 15: Always, always trust your instinct.

Rule 16: Always give people the benefit of doubt. But know when to cut your losses. People may disappoint you in the long run but know that it’s them and not you.

Rule 17: If you decide something on someone else’s advice, the decision is still yours. Own it.

Rule 18: Do not get overawed by people. Those who get overawed do not have a clear sense of self worth and classify people into those above them or below them. Only those who believe everyone is truly equal do not get overawed.