How to Know If You’re Living a Good Life

There are many ways of measuring the quality of your life. Wealth, status, health, knowledge, relationships, accomplishments, or the vague notion of ‘happiness’, are some of the qualities that people throw around to state how well they’re living. But aside from those trite measurements, I propose a new way of determining the quality of your life—through how much excitement you experience and how often.

Think about the last time you were so excited that you were unable to contain yourself. Perhaps you were jumping in joy and shouting without care. Perhaps for that moment you felt free from the flow of time or lost sense of your self as your ego melted away into a collective identity. Perhaps you experienced having your entire mind and body flowing with energy with pure focus and full confidence.

The key, however, is to find the right type of excitement among the many and to be aware of your own limits.

There are many types of excitement and even more ways to achieve them. But as a general rule, you want to keep three things in mind:

  1. Ensure that your source of excitement is physically engaging and visceral. You need to engage in your experience physically and be one with it. Watching movies, sports, or playing video games may bring great excitement too (I know, I’ve been there), but nothing can replace the actual reality of being there yourself and creating your own adventure.
  2. Engage excitement both as an individual and as a group. While not all activities are practical as a group, you will gain better experience as a team as excitement is what bonds men together (think of tribal hunting, sports teams, and brothers in arms).
  3. Enjoy every step of the way. Everything exciting follows through the same stages that have been programmed into our brains: desire stage where you start to fantasize about what you want, the planning stage where you build up the anticipation, the process stage where you exert and fight to obtain what you desire, the climax where your excitement peaks as you celebrate your triumph, and the resolution where you cool down and relish in your victory. Instead of just seeking the climax, you must try to enjoy every step of the way.

You will know when you’re experiencing the right type of excitement by the way you raise your arms and shout in pride for something you have accomplished. That memory of glory will stay with you for life.

Create excitements in your life, for life is not worth it without them. Live the life of danger. Of course, this is not to say that you should be reckless and disregard all other pursuits in life such as learning. Rather, this is a call to create your own adventures in a world that has forsaken them so that we be who we are and honour our primal nature. We are not mere drones that keep the System running, we are men.

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