1. I declare that I shall release the vice-grip of urgency and let go of Must Do, Must Get, Must Have, and Must Be. Compulsion doesn’t increase the quality of life.
2. I declare that the grass is not greener on the other side of the fence – it’s greenest where it’s watered – so when climbing daily fences, I will carry water. Or save the next fence for another day and just lie down on the grass I’ve got.
3. I declare that speed does not improve the quality of life, and the Way On is not the Interstate Highway but the inner-state of being present one day at a time.
4. I declare that it is true that life turns out best for the one who makes the best of the way life turns out. The key is improvisation in the face of the unexpected, which is always to be expected. A better name for that is surprise.
5. I declare that not knowing is the doorway into surprise and amazement. Ignorance is not a failing, it’s a ticket to ride.
6. I declare the truth that if there’s no rain, there’s no rainbows – that the lotus blossom only grows out of the mud – and that if there’s no shit, there’s no shinola.
7. I declare that what I have and what I am is what I would have wanted if I had thought this was possible long ago when I didn’t know what I wanted or who I was. Now I know what has become of me. I can laugh and keep going.
8. I declare a moratorium on worrying about how things will finally turn out – soon enough I will be what I once was – no one and nowhere – and I have been there before. No problem.
9. I declare the truth of the contradiction that I am forever alone and also forever as much a part of the universe as the most distant star. And I am not alone alone.
10. I declare that I finally accept the reality that the universe is working itself out as it should, and even if I never can comprehend that, it’s ok.
A Declaration by Robert Fulghum @ 80
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