The other day I watched a wild dog dart in front of my vehicle. I wasn’t moving too fast and so was able to avoid it. But I wondered what would have befallen the poor dog, if it had crossed the path of another driver moving at a faster pace. Many live that way; running fast along the road of life, oblivious of danger or peril.

There are many lessons life can teach us, if we would be observant. There are principles we can learn daily. Here are a few of mine:

1. Never toy with lives or treat serious matters with levity. There is a man King Solomon once described. He plays with fire and after he has burned the house down, he sputters, “But…I didn’t mean it”!

2. Never take “Panadol” for another man’s headache. Let adults figure out their own issues. It is patronizing to assume you know better.

3. Like the adage states, “When hunters learn to shoot without missing, birds learn to fly without perching.” Adapt to changes in your relationships, especially business relationships. Re-assess your value from time to time.

4. Never use your values to judge another man’s capacity for good or evil. If you do so, you will be perpetually surprised by other people’s actions.

5. As your prosperity increases, so will those who want to spend it with you. Avoid devourers. Learn the art of saying no and of being unavailable. Screen your calls.

6. Do not expose your friends, spouse or those you value to abuse. Protect those you love.

7. You don’t have to answer every call.

8. You don’t have to attend every event.

9. You don’t have to grant every favour. When you’re unavailable, people tend to find other options.

10. You don’t have to be there for everyone, all the time. If your emotional tank becomes empty, you’ll have nothing left to give.

11. You have siblings and colleagues. Let them carry some of the load. You are not Superman.

12. As you prosper, give commensurately. It enlarges your heart and keeps you grounded.

13. Never spiritualize another man’s pain. Don’t dismiss people’s troubles with religious platitudes.

14. Never use the speed with which you bounced back, to measure another person’s pace of recovery.

15. To identify true friends, watch how the people around you respond to the things that are important to you. Especially when you’ve been there for those people in the past.

16. Some friends will cause you to develop a philosophy of hardness in life. Don’t give in to the temptation to change who you are. Simply cut them off and focus on those that are worthy of you.

17. When you get to the point where you begin to think of “friends” in terms of waste – waste of time, waste of resources, waste of life, waste of self – they are no longer your friends.

18. Never let the people who care about you regret the sacrifices they have made for you. Do not be ungrateful and forgetful of their help.

19. You cannot lead, or project manage the unwilling.

20. Do not put your future on hold to avoid offending people. People will always choose what is in their interest. If they don’t put you into consideration when making their decisions, should you particularly consider them when making yours?

Never spiritualize pain. Don't dismiss people's troubles with religious platitudes. Click To Tweet Avoid devourers. Learn the art of saying no and of being unavailable. Click To Tweet You cannot lead or project manage the unwilling. Click To Tweet

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