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James Donaldson’s Book Review – Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff, and It’s All Small Stuff by Richard Carlson


dont-sweat-the-small-stuffThis was a wonderful book, and a great way to look at life, and learn to take it in stride, and also as the title states, “Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff, It’s All Small Stuff”. Oh, if only we can keep that in mind as we continue down our journey called life.

How many times do we get caught up in worrying about things that we have absolutely no control over, or things that are perpetuated by the people, or things that are not our fault, yet we take it personally?

We human beings are wired in such a way, that with the emotions that we’ve developed throughout our existence, those same emotions, which can be lifesaving and life enhancing most of the time, can also put us in a box, and keep us right there.

I wrote down several notes while reading through this book as the author gives us a lot of tips on how to “Not Sweat the Small Stuff”.

– Two rules of harmony in life are; (1) don’t sweat the small stuff, (2) it’s all small stuff.

– Make peace with imperfection

– Let go of the ideal that gentle, relaxed people cannot be super achievers

– Be aware of the “snowball” effect of your thinking

– Develop your compassion

– Remind yourself that when you die, your “in” basket won’t be empty

– Don’t interrupt people, and/or finish their sentences

– Do something nice for someone else, and don’t tell anyone about it

– Learn to live in the present moment

– Become more patient

– Ask yourself the question, will this matter a year from now?

– Surrendered to the fact that “life isn’t fair”

– Allow yourself to be bored once in a while

– Once a week, write a heartfelt letter

– Imagine yourself at your own funeral

– Spend a moment every day thinking of someone to thank

– Set aside quiet time every day

– Seek first to understand

– Become a better listener

– Choose your battles wisely

– Practice random acts of kindness, and senseless acts of duty

– Choose being kind over being right

– Understand separate realities

– Take a moment to say how much you like, admire, or respect about another person.
Make sure  you tell that to them.

– Search for a grain of truth in others opinions

– Understand the statement, “wherever you go, there you are”

– Breathe before you speak

– Adopt a child through the mail

– Read articles and books entirely different than a point of view from your own, and try to
learn something different

– Do one thing at a time

– Be willing to learn from friends and family

– Be happy where you are

– Do a favor and don’t ask for, or expect one in return

– Stop blaming others

– Become an early riser

– Trust your intuition

– Be open to what is “is”

– Live this day as if it was your last, it just might be


These tips, and so many more throughout this wonderful book, are things to keep in mind, and you realize how much more pleasant, relaxing, and easy flowing your life can be. Sometimes, we “subconsciously” get into these internal battles with people who cross our path throughout our day, and if we “let it go” and realize it’s just “small stuff anyway”, we won’t get ourselves ruffled, our blood pressure will stay nice and level, our adrenaline will stay within the normal range, and we ourselves will be much more pleasant people to be around.

Sometimes we’re all wound up, and we don’t realize why.

So, enjoy this wonderful book. It’s a short read for the most part, and something that you can refer back to time and time again. It’s one of those books, as I done with a handful of books throughout my life, that I choose to implement as many of the words of advice and beneficial points as I can into my own life.

I think, and pray, it makes me a better person as well!


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