As we all know, the truest life theories are the ones which can withstand the test of time.
And so I am going to be re-exploring “happiness tips” from famous, cool, dead people…to see if their theories are indeed timeless.
First of all, you pronounce her name “Ayn” so it rhymes with “mine” – which is apropos.
Because Ayn Rand’s famed life philosophy of “objectivism” is all about going for the “mine, mine, mine.”
Ayn pushes living your individualistic destiny to its fullest potential.
“I swear, by my life and my love of it,” said Ayn Rand, “I will never live for the sake of another man, nor ask another man to live for mine. ”
In her famous novels “The Fountainhead” and “Atlas Shrugged,” Ayn Rand dramatized this “rational individualist” – this “ideal human” – this “heroic being” – as someone who lived by their own effort.
She honored self-achievement.
And she rejected envy of others.
As a self-help author I’ve read many modern day research studies which support this Ayn Rand’s philosophy as a timeless one.
Plus the happiest people are the ones who don’t step foot onto what psychologists call the “hedonic treadmill” – enviously wanting more, because their neighbors have more.
She believed people can only achieve things by putting in the effort of a feisty one-pointedness.
“The question isn’t who is going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me,” said Ayn Rand.
This particular one-pointedness theory is also timelessly proven to work. Especially in today’s world – which is a hugely competitive marketplace.
This is why there’s a slew of best selling books about focusing on your “signature strengths” – and warning you not to raise your kids with lazy entitlement issues.
I tell my clients all the time that …
“The purpose of your life is to find and do the purpose of your life.”
Ayn Rand described the timeless power of making your purpose a “must” everlastingly well when she said:
“Every man builds his world in his own image. He has the power to choose, but no power to escape the necessity of choice.”
Another of Ayn Rand’s famed ideas asserts how the individual should NEVER feel guilty about having it all – if the individual can snag it all!
Unfortunately, far too many people also timelessly self-sabotage if they start to amass too much success and joy.
Basically, people wind up creating negative monetary beliefs about how much they “deserve.”
They create negative monetary habits – which then create negative monetary results.
Although I jest, the timeless truth within still twinkles rightly and brightly.
Ayn Rand offers many timeless ideas on this subject of breaking free from the shackles of limited thinking about wealth.
“Run for your life from any man who tells you that money is evil,” said Ayn Rand. “That sentence is the leper’s bell of an approaching looter. ”
With all this said, I do find that although Ayn Rand is a great encourager of folks going for the big cash prizes, sometimes she takes her espousing of materialism a bit too far.
”If any civilization is to survive, it is the morality of altruism that men have to reject. ” – Ayn Rand
She writes a lot about the negatives of altruism versus the benefits of materialism in her famed book of essays “The Virtues of Selfishness.”
Frankly, I found this book both fascinating and downright offensive.
Personally, I am a big supporter in taking time to give back to our world through charity and service.
Infinite research studies prove the benefits of doing altruistic acts. Not only for the world at large. But for the altruistic individual’s personal happiness.
According to Martin Seligman, the famed positive psychology author and professor at the University of Pennsylvania, one of the most effective techniques for creating personal happiness is to lead “a meaningful life.”
In an experiment called “Philanthropy versus Fun,” Seligman divided his psychology students so some engaged in pleasurable activities (going to the movies, eating yummy ice cream) and the others did philanthropic activities (volunteering at a soup kitchen, reading to the blind).
Plus giving to others gets you outside yourself and thereby distracts you from your problems.
With all this said, I’m betting that even if Ayn Rand and I started off a conversation disagreeing on this topic of altruism, she would nonetheless be open to hearing about these modern day research studies and theories.
“When I disagree with a rational man, I let reality be our final arbiter; if I am right, he will learn; if I am wrong, I will; one of us will win, but both will profit. ” – Ayn Rand
This Ayn Rand philosophy brings to mind the non-monetary definition of the word “profit.” In other words, profit can also mean to gain in one’s spirit and mind from hearing new, exciting ideas.
I love how Ayn consistently promotes this kind of profiting. And I will timelessly appreciate Ayn for this reminder to prioritize profiting in spirit and mind!