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12 Jordan B. Peterson Quotes To Help You Feel Less Lost In Life

So, you’re finally in your twenties. That means late nights out on the town, more independence and a whole whirlwind of fun and adventure, right? Well, although that may reign true, and should definitely be experienced, for many twenty-year-olds it means quite the opposite. With an overabundance of different paths to embark on and goals to achieve, twenty-year-olds are increasingly feeling lost and confused in the complexity of life. I would know -- I changed my major and minor collectively 5 times and already hit a quarter-life crisis of questioning what I want to do with my life at the mere age of 21. It was at this very moment, where I discovered “12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos” written by Dr. Jordan B. Peterson, undeniably the greatest intellectual phenomenon of our generation. 

After reading “12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos” by Dr. Jordan B. Peterson and making a habit of listening to Jordan B. Peterson podcast on daily walks outside. I gleaned an immense amount of knowledge on how to foster meaning and control the chaos of life. It’s the exact knowledge that young twenty-year-olds may find quite useful as they continue to grow personally and professionally -- exploring all the many things life has to offer. Through the depths of chaos, twenty-year-olds, or anyone for that matter, can begin to handle the confusion and the complexity of life by putting the things they can control in order and adopting responsibility.

Here are a few brilliant and remarkably helpful Dr. Jordan B. Peterson quotes from his book, “12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos” to guide you in moments of confusion and complexity: 

“Sometimes, when things are not going well, it’s not the world that’s the cause. The cause is instead that which is currently most valued, subjectively and personally...If the world you are seeing is not the world you want, therefore, it’s time to examine your values. It’s time to rid yourself of your current presuppositions. It’s time to let go. It might even be time to sacrifice what you love best, so that you can become who you might become, instead of staying who you are.”
   “You must determine where you are going in your life, because you cannot get there unless you move in that direction. Random wandering will not move you forward. It will instead disappoint and frustrate you and make you anxious and unhappy and hard to get along with (and then resentful, and then vengeful, and then worse).”
“You no longer have to be envious, because you no longer know that someone else truly has it better. You no longer have to be frustrated, because you have learned to aim low, and to be patient. You are discovering who you are, and what you want, and what you are willing to do. You are finding that the solutions to your particular problems have to be tailored to you, personally and precisely. You are less concerned with the actions of other people, because you have plenty to do yourself...Compare yourself to who you were yesterday, not to who someone else is today.”
“Pay attention. Focus on your surroundings, physical and psychological. Notice something that bothers you, that concerns you, that will not let you be, which you could fix, that you would fix. You can find such somethings by asking yourself (as if you genuinely want to know) three questions: What is it that is bothering me? Is that something I could fix? and ‘Would I be willing to fix it?’ If you find the answer is ‘no,’ to any or all of the questions, then look elsewhere. Aim lower. Search until you find something that bothers you, that you could fix, that you would fix, and then fix it. That might be enough for the day.”
“The world allows for many ways of Being. If you don’t succeed at one, you can try another. You can pick something better matched to your unique mix of strengths, weaknesses, and situation. Furthermore, if changing games does not work, you can invent a new one.”
“You are important to other people, as much as to yourself. You have some vital role to play in the unfolding of the destiny of the world. You are, therefore, morally obligated to take care of yourself. You should take care of, help and be good to yourself the same way you would take care of, help and be good to someone you loved and valued.”
“You need to consider the future and think, ‘What might my life look like if I were caring for myself properly? What career would challenge me and render me productive and helpful, so that I could shoulder my share of the load, and enjoy the consequences? What should I be doing, when I have some freedom, to improve my health, expand my knowledge, and strengthen my body?’ You need to know where you are, so you can start to chart your course. You need to know who you are, so that you understand your armament and bolster yourself in respect to your limitations. You need to know where you are going, so that you can limit the extent of chaos in your life, restructure order, and bring the divine force of Hope to bear on the world.”
“Don’t underestimate the power of vision and direction. These are irresistible forces, able to transform what might appear to be unconquerable obstacles into transversable pathways and expanding opportunities. Strengthen the individual. Start with yourself. Take care with yourself. Define who you are. Refine your personality. Choose your destination and articulate your Being. As the great nineteenth century philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche so brilliantly noted, ‘He whose life has a why can bear almost any how.’”
“Memory is a tool. Memory is the past’s guide to the future. If you remember that something bad happened, and you can figure out why, then you can try to avoid that bad thing happening again. That’s the purpose of memory. It’s not ‘to remember the past.’ It’s to stop the same damn thing from happening over and over.”
“Wish upon a star, and then act properly, in accordance with that aim. Once you are aligned with the heavens, you can concentrate on the day. Be careful. Put the things you can control in order. Repair what is in disorder, and make what is already good better. It is possible that you can manage, if you are careful.  People are very tough. People can survive through much pain and loss. But to persevere they must see the good in Being. If they lose that, they are truly lost.”
“To stand up straight with your shoulders back is to accept the terrible responsibility of life, with eyes wide open. It means deciding to voluntarily transform the chaos of potential into the realities of habitable order. It means adopting the burden of self-conscious vulnerability and accepting the end of the unconscious paradise of childhood, where finitude and mortality are only dimly comprehended. It means willingly undertaking the sacrifices necessary to generate a productive and meaningful reality.”
“Order is not enough. You can’t just be stable, and secure, and unchanging, because there are still vital and important new things to be learned. Nonetheless, chaos can be too much. You can’t long tolerate being swamped and overwhelmed beyond your capacity to cope while you are learning what you still need to know. Thus, you need to place one foot in what you have mastered and understood and the other in what you are currently exploring and mastering. Then you have positioned yourself where the terror of existence is under control and you are secure, but where you are also alert and engaged. That is where there is something new to master and some way that you can be improved. That is where meaning is to be found.”
An accomplished undergraduate student at Montclair State University pursuing a B.A. in Public Relations with a minor in Business Administration. Inspired by the world around me, I cover topics such as: politics, travel, and communication tips.
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