Robin Sharma

10 essential life lessons from bestselling author Robin Sharma

Bestselling author Robin Sharma offers simple solutions to the most difficult challenges in life.

You probably know him as the man behind the international bestseller, The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari. But Robin Sharma’s repertoire goes beyond that. In addition to being one of the most widely-read authors in the world, Sharma is also one of the premier thought leaders on leadership and personal mastery. Through his books, lectures and seminars, he has inspired millions of people and helped them learn invaluable life lessons.

As a speaker, Sharma possesses the rare ability to get messages through to his audience with great passion and conviction. He does so by providing original, simple and useful insights that lead to individuals becoming more productive, teams providing excellent results, and organisations becoming unstoppable in their pursuit of success.

By offering simple and effective solutions to the most difficult challenges in life, Sharma has inspired countless individuals across the world to take charge of their actions and lead a life that is relentless in its search for purpose, success and happiness. Here are 10 life lessons from the acclaimed author that can provide you with an impetus to succeed in life.

Forgiveness can boost productivity

Life is unpredictable and you are bound to get hurt at some point or the other, perhaps by someone close to you. But if you can’t find the willingness to forgive them, you may end up carrying the burden of hatred, negativity and resentment for the rest of your life. This can cause serious damage to your mental wellbeing and stifle your productivity and creativity. The more you repress your anger and pain, the more you operate under stress and start perceiving the world through a filter that is created by that pain.

Therefore, instead of repressing your emotions, learn to embrace forgiveness. Write what you feel in your journal or open up to someone close to you. The idea is to let go of the feeling that is holding you back from performing at your best. Once you do that, you will be clear emotionally, internally and intellectually, which will then give you the freedom to do amazing things. Sharma tweets, “Forgiveness isn’t just a blessing you deliver to another human being. Forgiveness is also a gift you give yourself.”

Practice gratitude for a better life

Practising gratitude can help you experience more positive emotions, feel lively, and get better sleep, research shows. You don’t need to express gratitude only for the bigger things in life, but be thankful for the simpler things such as good health, a loving family, and friends. Discover the innate joy by developing gratitude for such things. This practice can significantly improve your wellbeing and satisfaction. Sharma says in another tweet, “Gratitude is the antidote to fear and thankfulness is the cure for worry. On this day, rise to grateful and thankful.”

Tough times pave way for better days

It is important to see difficult circumstances as a turn-around platform for growth and betterment. There is always a chance of a curveball stalling your progress, but it is up to you to turn the situation around in your favour, and make the best out of it. For example, if you are applying for a new job or ending a relationship, it is exactly what you need to start a new chapter in your life, no matter how tough these decisions are. Letting go of a negative situation can pave the way for introspection and make you a better person. Remember, tough times always pave the way for better days. “Each day, life will send you little windows of opportunity. Your destiny will ultimately be defined by how you respond to these windows of opportunity,” Sharma says in his book The Greatness Guide: Powerful Secrets for Getting to World Class.

Talk less, do more

Another important life lesson you can learn from the bestselling author is to talk less and do more. Words are powerful tools, but actions send a message that is louder and clearer. Your smallest of actions is much better and more effective than your biggest of intentions. If your actions don’t match your words and promises, people can eventually start to lose trust in you. Whether you are fulfilling a promise or trying to reach an ambitious goal, your actions, no matter how insignificant, add up to the bigger scheme of things and show your real attitude towards life. Sharma tweets, “No one cares about your elegantly expressed intentions. Only your brilliantly executed results.”

Drink more water

According to research, even mild dehydration can impair memory and mood. Hydration impacts the brain, as well as the body. Drinking the right amount of water is essential for proper hydration and productivity. In his book The Greatness Guide: One of the World’s Most Successful Coaches Shares His Secrets for Personal and Business Mastery: The 10 Best Lessons Life Has Taught Me, Sharma says that drinking water “prevents dehydration, keeps me energized and maintains sharpness of mind.” So, drink more water every day to stay healthy and productive.

Laugh and smile more often

Smiling is so much more than just an expression. It helps break the ice in an awkward situation, forge friendships, trust, and can even make someone’s day better. When you smile more often, the brain releases endorphins, which lower your stress and boost your overall mood. So, when you feel bored or are upset about something, take a deep breath, and put out that magical smile. In his book, The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari: A Fable About Fulfilling Your Dreams and Reaching Your Destiny, Sharma writes, “Laughter opens your heart and soothes your soul. No one should ever take life so seriously that they forget to laugh at themselves.”

Do not forget to have fun

Most of the time, people become so engrossed in their pursuit of success that they forget there is more to life than just work. If you forget to celebrate the small victories in your life or revel in pleasant moments, you lose your drive and eventually fail to reach your goals. Moreover, celebrating small wins can help you monitor and track your accomplishments. You will know how far you have come and how much farther you have to go.

“The moment I stopped spending so much time chasing the big pleasure of life. I began to enjoy the little ones, like watching the stars dancing in moonlit sky or soaking in the sunbeams of a glorious summer morning,” says Sharma in his book The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari: A Remarkable Story About Living Your Dreams.

Learn to love yourself

You can never be truly happy if you don’t love yourself because no matter how pleasant everything else in your life is, there will be difficult moments where you may harbour feelings of self-doubt. But when you love and care about yourself, you experience happiness like nothing else. You become confident and better prepared for future challenges. You can develop this habit by casting out the idea that you have to be perfect, meet others’ expectations, and by embracing the fact that you can’t control everything. In The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari: A Fable About Fulfilling Your Dreams and Reaching Your Destiny, he wrote, “It is only when you have mastered the art of loving yourself that you can truly love others. It’s only when you have opened your own heart that you can touch the hearts of others. When you feel centred and alive, you are in a much better position to be a better person.”

You are stronger than you know

You should never let the weight of life’s challenges sink all your hopes and dreams. You are stronger than you think and have the ability to overcome the obstacles that life throws your way. Most people underestimate their strengths and give up when they hit rock bottom. They limit their abilities based on self-framed constraints of their capabilities. If you want to know what you are capable of, you need to push your limits. When you find out your strengths, you may even surprise yourself. In The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari: A Fable About Fulfilling Your Dreams and Reaching Your Destiny, Sharma says, “Don’t accept a life of mediocrity when you hold such infinite potential within the fortress of your mind. Dare to tap into your greatness.”

Failure is the price of greatness

To be great at what you do, you need to embrace failures because you are bound to suffer setbacks along the way. You can either let failures deter you from your path or you can use them to motivate yourself to keep trying until you succeed. For example, if you want to be a great footballer, it would take years of dedication and training, with no guarantee of success. Yet, this shouldn’t hinder your growth or pull you back from committing yourself to your target. So, you need to be prepared to take the risks and see mistakes as stepping stones to your goals. In his book, The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari: A Fable About Fulfilling Your Dreams and Reaching Your Destiny, Sharma says, “Failure is not having the courage to try, nothing more and nothing less.”


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