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Thanks for signing up! We've emailed you instructions for claiming your free e-book. Tell us more about what you like to read so we can send you the best offers and opportunities. Skip to content. Specialty Booksellers Interest-specific online venues will often provide a book buying opportunity. International Customers If you are located outside the U. But books can help us survive Marino has produced an honest and moving book of self-help for readers generally disposed to loathe the genre.

The prose is electric, illustrating the point that existentialism is also literary. His disarming honesty and sense of humor make the book easy to read despite its heavy subject matter.

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Recommended for you. AvoCuddle by. You Are 24 Carrot Gold by. The Art of Loving by Erich Fromm. Take Control by J. Jump by Steve Harvey.

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Year Year Sign up Now. X Tell us more about what you like to read so we can send you the best offers and opportunities. For more ideas, advice and detail on many of the points mentioned in this booklet, visit www. Then why not check out our other free publications on this site? Have a browse now! Thank you! Skip to main content. Search form. Join Us! It's a great introduction to some of our work at Life Squared. How to live with greater self-determination The first item in our survival kit for modern life is one of the most important, and influences how we approach all the other elements.

Here are some basic ideas on how to protect your identity: Know yourself — try to develop an honest sense of what you are really about, including what makes you happy and fulfilled, what makes you unhappy or uncomfortable, what your priorities are in life and how you really want to live. Be happy with yourself — an important ingredient in your flourishing is learning to be happy with yourself or at least accepting who you are.

This includes accepting our natural tendencies, qualities and physical features and realising that we are neither perfect nor imperfect — we are just ourselves.

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It also means seeing the best in ourselves and making the best of ourselves. Be kind to yourself — you have enough to deal with in life, and the last thing you need is to attack yourself with self-doubt, negative thoughts, or other self-destructive thinking, such as dwelling too much on what people think of you. If you find these self-defeating thoughts emerging, remind yourself to be a friend to yourself! Be yourself - trust yourself and be comfortable with your judgements unless you have good reason not to — stay open minded but resist attacks to your identity.

This will help you to live on your own terms, rather than feeling you have to follow others, for example in deciding the pace you want to live your life at.

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Also, start to see any adversity you encounter or major challenges you meet in a wider context. Involve yourself in your community — as the Young Foundation says, we take our cues from the society around us and learn by mimicry. So, if we are involved in a community that is resilient, trusting and supportive, this will help us to be so too.

Find a pillar of support — find a person or organisation that believes in you, makes you feel stronger, and can be responsive and reliable if you need them.

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  6. This pillar could take many forms — it could per a person such as a mentor, partner, colleague or friend, or an institution or group of people — such as a group of friends, club or a church. Live a simpler life - reduce your radius of impact on the world.

    The Existentialist's Survival Guide - Gordon Marino - Hardcover

    For example, buying your food locally and buying local produce where possible will reduce the range of processes, transactions and people involved in supplying your food. In general, the simpler and more local you can make your life, the smaller your radius of impact is likely to be and therefore the less complexity you will find.

    Consuming less will also reduce your radius of impact. Find some trusted sources of information - No source of information is completely unbiased, but it is possible to build a selection of trusted sources that can summarise and filter some of the complexity in the world for you. By finding these sources and understanding their biases, you can build a useful resource to help you deal with the complexity of the world on an ongoing basis.

    These may include newspapers, websites and other information resources. Have some daily reflection time - allow yourself some time as little as ten minutes each day to sit quietly without disturbance, close your eyes, relax and remove yourself from the rush and complexity of modern life. Activities such as meditation, yoga or walking in the countryside can help this process, but choose the way that suits you best.

    For example, you might regard your family as a big priority, but you might be spending a lot of time working, including travelling to and from work. If this leaves you with little time for your family, it may be worth exploring the possibilities of working fewer hours or working more locally, so that you can give more time to your family. Money management — money can be an uncomfortable topic for many people. So, learn how to manage your money better and reduce your debt.

    How to live as an effective moral agent Each of us affects the world and people around us in various ways. How to find sources of well-being and meaning Find your own pace of life Modern life takes place at a frenetic pace. Here are a couple of things you can do: Realise you have a choice — ignore the influences from friends, the media and wider society telling you how you should run your relationship with time. It is up to you, and the first thing to do is realise this and take control of this relationship.

    Give people more time — our relationships with other people are some of the most important things in our lives. Allow yourself the time to chat with your neighbours, call your family or stay on the phone a bit longer with your friends. Shop locally — one of the reasons people shop in huge out-of-town supermarkets is to save time, but if you allow yourself the time to visit your local shops instead, this can be a far more sociable and relaxed experience. Remember to appreciate life — never lose your appreciation of the amazing fact that you exist in the first place, and savour the experience of being alive, as well as the individual experiences you have.

    Research has shown that practising awareness of sensations, thoughts and feelings can improve both the knowledge we have about ourselves and our well-being.

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    Be thankful for being alive, and this will give you a positive outlook on life. Give yourself the time to think it through as you want. Here are just a few ways you can connect further with other people: Give people time — making time to engage properly with people is the first step to connecting with them better. Allow yourself the time to chat with the local shopkeeper, call your family or to stay on the phone a bit longer with your friends. Meet your neighbours — go round and introduce yourself. Invite them round. Organise a get-together for the residents of your street.

    Shop locally — visiting the shops in your local high street can be a far more sociable and relaxed affair than visiting a huge out-of-town supermarket. Offer help and ask for help — both of these are useful ways of strengthening ties with people. Be curious — being interested in the people and world around you should not be a trait that is confined to children. Try to rediscover your sense of interest and curiosity in the people and the world around you. If none of it interests you, then why not set up a social group yourself?

    Despite the lack of appropriate institutions and language to help us explore our inner lives, we can each start exploring them now, for example: Think about the big questions — find some quiet time to think about issues such as the meaning of life, what it feels like to exist and your place in the universe.

    The perspective you gain from this may well make you feel calmer in everyday life. Talk to your friends about these questions and get a discussion going. Learn — read some books on philosophy, the history of thought and religion. Learn how to think in a clear way about philosophical matters. Learn about some of the issues that thinkers have grappled with over the centuries, think about them for yourself and come to your own conclusions. Each of us may find them in different activities — from lying in the grass on a summer day to getting absorbed in a great piece of music.

    Put your life into context — look beyond the rush of daily life and start to see your life in a broader context - as part of a world population, a species, a natural world, a planet and a universe — and see if this changes the way you see your life. Below are some initial ways you can start to participate more in the world: Volunteer — offer your time to help other people or groups — locally, nationally or internationally. Learn about politics — find out how your local and national political systems work so that you can find the most effective ways of taking part in them.

    Get involved in your community — the vibrancy of your local community depends on your contribution, so get involved. Keep up with local issues and join groups, attend meetings and contact people to make your contribution. Have your say — get involved in the issues you care about — whether local or international. If something bothers you, find out who to contact about it and make your case.

    Take part in campaigns, actions and petitions and contact your MP. Pick the important battles that you care most about. Final thoughts We hope that this guide has provided you with some useful ideas on how to live a happier, wiser and more meaningful life within the pressures and complexity of the modern world. The Modern Life Survival Guide. Join Life Squared today!