Mark Twain was a prolific writer, satirist, humorist and lecturer, and he always had some sort of quirky, sometimes ironic, wisdom on just about everything.  As the author of books like The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, his prominent place in literature has been forever cemented in history.

Here are five Mark Twain inspired tips for living a better life:

1. You only need your own approval

“A man cannot be comfortable without his own approval.”

I like to believe that, unless you’re a sociopath, acting in ways that contradict your natural moral compass cause a certain uneasiness within us because we know what we should be doing. If you don’t approve of the life you’re living and the things you’re doing, you’ll never be free to do the things you really want to do.

Give yourself permission to be the person you truly want to be.

2. Perceived difficulty or lack of ability is often all in your head

“Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.”

Much of the anxiety and stress in our lives is due to perceptions that exist only in our minds, not in reality.  These things usually only matter when we start being overly self conscious about them, and others pick up on this.

But, if you can switch gears, and choose not to care too much about these little stressors and insecurities, the world will open up to you like it never has before.

3. Never take things too seriously, have fun with it

“Humor is mankind’s greatest blessing.”

It’s because they recognize that humor and laughter are tools; tools we use to promote positivity and solidarity.

4. Rid yourself of angry thoughts

“Anger is an acid that can do more harm to the vessel in which it is stored than to anything on which it is poured.”

I recently came to the conclusion that any energy spent on negative or unhappy thoughts is wasted, because I could be thinking literally anything else.  Having feelings like anger, jealousy, and envy, serve you in no other way but to harm you.  Let yourself be happy; choose to let go of all negativity that comes your way.

5. Recognize that the world doesn’t owe you anything

“Don’t go around saying the world owes you a living. The world owes you nothing. It was here first.”

One of the best truths you can accept in this life is that no one owes you anything.  If you’re not willing to put yourself out into the world, don’t expect the world to come looking for you.  You get back 100 percent of what you put in.  But, that’s also what is so great about this type of liberation: you can literally do whatever you want.  

So be willing to step outside of your comfort zone in order to pursue what you want most in life. There comes a time in everyone’s life when people stop giving you handouts; don’t get upset, embrace it and make a life for yourself.

This article was reprinted with permission from Expanded Consciousness

h/t Positivity Blog