Julia’s Rules to Live By

Last Updated on October 27, 2023

I’ve seen versions of this done by others and always wanted to build my own. I like the lighthearted lists that mix serious with seemingly trivial advice. A lists of things I believe to be true. I always liked The Sunscreen Song (and the column it was based on). Particularly this line about my “own meandering experience”.

If I could offer you only one tip for the future, sunscreen would be it. The long-term benefits of sunscreen have been proved by scientists, whereas the rest of my advice has no basis more reliable than my own meandering experience. I will dispense this advice now.

Life is a set of meandering experiences, some leaps forward, some zig zags, and some slow circling. I like how this points to the random nature of life that is sometimes not front of mind.

Here is a brain dump of my meandering experience, it’s totally unpolished, I’ll hopefully refine this over time.

  • Choose a home with good natural light ahead of other features.
  • Grow your own herbs to use in your own cooking.
  • And put the fresh mint in your water.
  • Choose a home with good people even ahead of the natural light.
  • Eat meals not snacks. This is true for kids too, but harder to implement.
  • Try not to eat too early in the morning, or after sunset at night.
  • When you are eating food, put away your phone and taste your food.
  • You only get one body so take care of it, prioritize time to get it moving.
  • Sometimes when you’re under pressure, you might think the end justifies the means. I’ve never found that to be true in hindsight.
  • Relationships matter more than anything else, treasure and protect them at home and at work.
  • Money matters, but disposable time matters at least as much, if not more.
  • Seek out new experiences, try nearly anything once.
  • Understand the different kinds of luck, and that you’re much more likely to have serendipitous encounters out and about that on your sofa.
  • Read often, and read widely.
  • Seek out opposing views and read those too.
  • Life is full of randomness, recognize this and the effect it has on your failures, but also your successes.