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Saturday, August 20, 2011

Words of Wisdom ~ Robert Louis Stevenson

As a young reader I discovered the
work of Robert Louis Stevenson.
I loved Treasure Island, Kidnapped
and the Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll
and Mr. Hyde.  I also was influenced
by his biography.  I loved the stories
of his travels and always dreamed that
one day I would be able to travel the
world.  Luckily, for me those dreams
 have come true.

12 Rules to Live By
                                                  ~Robert Louis Stevenson

Make up your mind to be happy.  Learn to
find pleasure in simple things.

Make the best of circumstances.  No one has
everything and everyone has something of sorrow.

Don't take yourself too seriously.

Don't let criticism worry you.  You can't
please everybody.

Don't let your neighbors set your standards,
be yourself.

Do things you enjoy doing but stay out of debt.

Don't borrow trouble.  Imaginary things are
harder to bear than actual ones.

Since hate poisons the soul, do not cherish
enmities and grudges.  Avoid people who
make you unhappy.

Have many interests.  If you can't travel,
read about places.

Don't hold post-mortems or spend time
brooding over sorrows and mistakes.

Do what you can for those less fortunate
than yourself.

Keep busy at something.  A very busy person
never has time to be unhappy.

I think the world could be a better place
if we were to live by these rules.


  1. 12 VERY good rules to live by.... thanks for sharing these!

  2. Ellen,

    You'll enjoy this essay about RLS, "A Head Full of Swirling Dreams," by Brian Doyle: http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2001/11/a-head-full-of-swirling-dreams/2325/

    It also appears in this book, which I edited several years ago: