7 Life Lessons from the Legendary Bruce Lee
By Chris Cains / Source: Pelmanism Powers
Bruce Lee is an iconic figure who should need no introduction. He helped to popularize martial arts in western society and impressed on the big screen with his amazing action movies.
From Bruce Lee's iconic role as Kato in The Green Hornet television series to his remarkable starring roles in films like Enter the Dragon, Bruce Lee was a thoroughly entertaining man. The screen presence that the man possessed was undeniable. Lee influenced the generations after him in multiple ways. Many modern mixed martial artists site Bruce Lee's martial arts techniques and overall philosophy to the art of hand-to-hand combat as a huge inspiration for their becoming martial artists.
Though he is probably most famous as an action movie star and creator of the Jeet Kune Do martial arts style, Lee also had an incredible outlook on life. Many of his quotes and overall philosophy on how to live life are still inspiring people today. In this article we will take a look at some of the advice Lee had to give.
1. Get up and do it.
"Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Willing is not enough; we must do."
This is solid advice. Possessing the knowledge of something is a good starting point, but in order to actually achieve anything in this world you must apply that knowledge to your actions. Even if you want to do something it isn't enough to simply wish it was so. Life is about having the courage to actually do the things you conjure in your head. There are those who dream and then there are those who make dreams reality. When you commit to taking action in your life you can do great things. The first step to greatness may be just putting one foot in front of the other.
2. Thoughts are important.
"As you think, so shall you become."
A person's thoughts determine so much about them. What you go around thinking about others, the world around you and especially about yourself helps to mold your perception of the world. The way you perceive things affects you in such a way so as to guide your actions. As such a confident individual who believes in his abilities and has thoughts in his head that affirm his capability is more likely to succeed in life. Do not mistake confidence with overconfidence though. A man who also thinks clearly enough to understand his own faults and wish to better them over time is truly wise.
3. Blind anger will get you nowhere.
"A quick temper will make a fool of you soon enough."
Being quick to anger is not a good trait to possess. When you let your temper control who you are, you become a reckless person who doesn't think straight and winds up making many mistakes. It is true when they say that cooler heads prevail. When you look at something from a calm standpoint and try to think in terms of logic and what is best for you, the results you get will be better. Even when there are those who seek to anger you out of spite or hatred you should not them play you for a fool. Being in control of your emotions will allow you to come out the better man or woman.
4. Live for yourself.
"I'm not in this world to live up to your expectations and you're not in this world to live up to mine."
In life you should strive to live by your own standards. There are so many people in the world that worry about what others think of them and the legacy they will leave behind. Whether it is something simple like wishing to please one's parents, or if it is to impress a certain social group, what purpose does that really serve? If you live your life just to impress others or try to meet their expectations of what you should be then you are ignoring your own individuality. Humans are individual creatures. We possess unique abilities, thoughts and feelings. Life should be explored thoroughly in the pursuit of happiness for the self. Oftentimes personal happiness includes the happiness of those close to you, but ultimately you should be your biggest critic and judge, not others.
5. Time is finite.
"If you love life, don't waste time, for time is what life is made up of."
Time moves forward at the same pace for all. It will slow down for no man, and no man can truly know how much time he has. Because of this time is a very precious thing, just like life itself. Life is an incredible experience full of emotions, perceptions and wonders of all kinds. Live in the moment and don't take things for granted. Everything that you do should be enjoyed, because you never when your time is up. When you waste time doing nothing or pleasing others when you really want to do other things, you are cheating yourself out of precious time. Make sure that your time is being spent wisely towards your own ends.
6. Be flexible in life.
"Notice that the stiffest tree is most easily cracked, while the bamboo or willow survives by bending in the wind."
When you hold fast to certain plans or old ways, you can be doing yourself a disservice. The world is ever changing and presents many new challenges that you will have to face in a lifetime. When these challenges present themselves, sometimes being rigid and sticking to your old ways will not allow you to come through unscathed. If you can be flexible like the bamboo bending in the wind, you will not crack from all of the pressure. Your mind needs to be able to adapt in life. When new problems arise be ready to meet them. This is a great quote to think about for business strategy as well, because as has been shown in recent years, rigid business models are the most susceptible to sudden failure. Flexibility is formidability.
7. Simplify your life.
"It's not the daily increase but the daily decrease. Hack away at the unessential."
In life it can be easy to get wrapped up in so many different things. When you take a step back and truly look at your life, you might be surprised to find that there are many unessential elements that could be cut out so as to save time for that which is truly important to you. By streamlining your life in ways you can increase your quality of life. This is an incredible thing and should be undertaken by everyone. When you can live your life with a conviction to focus on the things that matter to you, you can get so much accomplished. Cut the frivolous out of your life if at all possible.
There we have it. As you can see Bruce Lee was quite the philosopher. He had many great ideas for how to better live life, and through the examination of some of his theories people can be inspired to make changes in their own lives. A lot of this advice is so effective because at its core it is very practical. The best advice often is. Take heed to these words if the meaning behind them touches you. You might find that you can glean some new happiness in life because of it.
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