Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Tolstoy’s Daily Schedule

I was reading a National Geographic article on Leo Tolstoy(from our collection of magazines from the 1970-80’s. In it, the author spoke about his daily schedule. Supposedly, every day was broken up into four parts.

Here’s his schedule:
  •          Waking until Breakfast: Physical Activity
  •          Breakfast until Lunch: Mental activity(in his case, reading and writing etc)
  •          Lunch until Dinner: Artistic and creative activities
  •          After Dinner: Time spent with his family and loved ones.

Obviously, he had the advantage of being an author and not having to “work” during the day, but I think we can all do a better job of balancing our lives. I know some very good athletes who provide themselves very little intellectual stimulus and some very cerebral individuals who are one milk shake from death. And there are others who neglect their family for one of these other endeavors. It’s the balance of these activities (you don’t have to knit, just find something that brings out some creativity), that allow us to have full life experiences and enjoy all aspects of our life.

Tolstoy is actually a pretty amazing person. Supposedly it was him who convinced Gandhi to utilize non-violence to elicit change in India. And I believe two of his books are listed as numbers 1 and 3 on the all time best book list. Not too shabby. 

I guess it's probably time that I suck it up and read his books.

Speaking of avoiding reading by paying attention to other mediums, I'm taking a Coursera course right now on leadership and it was talking about happiness. There is a lot of evidence that about 50% of our happiness is genetic and fairly rigid(meaning that it's our base line and doesn't change with events). 10%  of our happiness depends on life circumstances(like employment, relationship status etc), and the remaining 40% is internal. And it's in this 40% that we can make our own happiness. People who exercise, help others, adapt positive attributes, have positive social interactions are happier. Amazingly, they also get sick less frequently and live longer!

Note:How is it possible to know whether happy people live longer as opposed to people who live longer are happier(maybe because they have less things making them sick)?
The answer came in a longitudinal study on nuns which looked at their affect when they were in their 20's and then they were followed through their years(and years) in the convent. Those who had expressed higher levels of happiness lived longer!

Take away from today's blog. Set a schedule and dedicate yourself to all elements of your life, help others, be positive and stay active! Happiness will follow.

Until next time,


No comments:

Post a Comment