My Life Philosophy

Rachel Lee
5 min readAug 5, 2023


  • Spend time in nature every day. Appreciate the beauty of everything nature has to offer. Bask in the sunshine, take in stunning views and smell the fresh air!
  • Do hard things. Always. “If you don’t have any discomfort in your life, how do you know when you feel good?” — Lazarus Lake.
  • “Everything around you that you call life was made up by people who were no smarter than you. And you can change it. You can influence it. You can build your own things that other people can use.” Steve Jobs. Spend your life working towards crazy ambitious goals that everyone says are impossible. The status quo can be changed, problems that anger you can be solved, diseases can be cured, so why aren’t you dedicating your life to doing these things?
  • Smile. Life is amazing.
  • Thank the people who influenced you. Parents, teachers, professors, coaches, mentors. The people who have changed your life deserve a thank you.
  • Love yourself unconditionally. Give yourself the gift of self love.
  • Be generous with those you care about. Show don’t tell. Treat those closest to you well — take them to nice places, buy them yummy food.
  • Do not lower your ambition to the environment you are in.
  • Be happy. What is there not to be happy about?
  • Never say no to an opportunity because of money. Opportunities are once in a lifetime — don’t let money be the reason you say no to a potentially life changing opportunity. Take out a loan, borrow from a family member, work another job, look for grants + scholarships, use your savings. Money can be made back, but you never get a second chance to say yes to an opportunity.
  • Always apologize, even if you didn’t do anything wrong. A stupid argument is not worth a broken relationship. Be the bigger person.
  • Verbalize your love for people often. Don’t wait until writing their eulogy to say how much someone means to you. Say it often to their face.
  • Don’t take no for an answer. There is always a third door.
  • Always spend the $400 on the plane ticket. You will never regret it. The experience you’ll have and memories you will make are worth $400.
  • Never engage in or encourage gossip, or the spreading of rumors.
  • Make time for your health (mental and physical). You only have one body.
  • Reply to messages within 48 hours. No one deserves to be left hanging.
  • Know what is going on in the world. Take interest in something bigger than yourself. Being oblivious about the world is one of the most careless actions you can take.
  • Always hold the door for others.
  • Don’t buy anything (material object) unless you need it. Essentially, live minimally. Ask yourself “do I need this?”, “what value will this add to my life?” before every purchase. Place your value on meaningful experiences over meaningless possessions. Don’t spend your money, time and energy consuming and maintaining stuff that you don’t need, use or want
  • Savor the little joys in life and treasure every moment. Don’t live your life on autopilot — get out of your own head and look at the love and beauty around you. Do not let any little joy slip by without appreciation.
  • Let others rant about things they’re passionate about (even if you’re not). Be interested and ask questions about things that others are interested in.
  • Don’t care what other people might think. The only opinion that matters is your own.
  • Never change who you are for someone else, or to “fit into the crowd”. Stay true to your values. Never compromise your values to please someone else or be accepted.
  • What does not kill you, makes you stronger. You can always do more.
  • Wake up at 6am every day.
  • Move your body every day, no matter what.
  • Treat everyone with the same amount of respect. People on the streets are still humans, and deserve to be treated with the same respect you would give to Bill Gates or Elon Musk, who are also humans.
  • Choose the top things you are willing to spend a lot of money on. With everything else, be frugal. This is a matter of deciding what you value in life. Do you want to spend your money on nice clothes, high quality food, travel, donations, friends, health, sports? Be generous in your two or three top values, and be frugal in all other areas. Save your money for what you value most.
  • Surround yourself with people who push you to become better.
  • Always say yes to ice cream. You’ll remember the memories.
  • Remember that your normal is someone else’s best case scenario. Appreciate your normal.
  • Share your resources and experience with others. Don’t gatekeep.
  • Don’t spend your energy worrying about tiny things — it’s not worth it.
  • Never let money come in between people you care about. Money comes and goes, people do not.
  • “Global progress is limited by the ambition of the most ambitious.” Be the most ambitious.
  • Don’t spend money on things, spend money on experiences.
  • Never take anything or anyone for granted.
  • Spend time every day alone by yourself. No music, podcast, stimulation or other people to distract you. Learn to love the silence, and become okay with having only your thoughts to keep you company.
  • Instead of looking for validation from others, find validation within yourself.
  • Avoid buying brand name clothes. Thrift everything (clothes and objects) you can.
  • Drop what you’re doing to help a friend/family member or take a phone call from a loved one.
  • Always bring something when going to someone’s house. A note, flowers, chocolate, wine, food, handmade (or bought) gift, piece of art. Show appreciation for the hospitality of others.
  • Give genuine compliments to strangers.
  • Be there for your friends when they need you, even if it’s inconvenient for you.
  • Don’t listen to pessimism. There is so much negativity in the world, why let this consume you? Do you view the glass as 90% empty or 10% full? Always view the glass as 10% full.
  • Be enthusiastic and excited. Life is absolutely amazing. What is there not to be enthusiastic and excited about?
  • Be your #1 supporter. Can you look in the mirror and admire the person you see? Can you believe in yourself even if no one else does?
  • Change “no, not, can’t”, to “yes, can, do”.
  • Be grateful for what you have. Material things, opportunities and people.
  • Reflect on yourself and your life often. Self awareness is the basis of all other skills.

I had a lot of fun reflecting on the principles and values that I live my life by, and condensing them down into these short bullet points. If you want to become more self aware of how you live your life, I would suggest grabbing a notebook + pen, and taking an afternoon to sit in nature and journal/reflect.

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A pic I took on the shores of Lake Ontario during a recent camping trip.



Rachel Lee

Building the skills to one day build solutions to some of the biggest problems in the world |