I’ve been told that some of “the unwritten rules I live by” are weird. This may be true but they work for me. Some of them I got from my father and others I developed over time based on life experiences. These are a few I got from my dad which he may have gotten from his dad are; “Leasing a car is a rip-off, you should buy a car don’t rent it”. “Employment agencies don’t care if you get a job you’re good at or enjoy, they just want to get paid”. “It’s better to have more insurance than not enough”. And one I know isn’t original but the first time I heard it was from my dad; “If you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all”.
I don’t necessarily agree with all of my dad’s “rules” but they are always in the back of my mind when relative situations arise. I think that’s the purpose of these. Whether they are things I’ve heard, or my own, they affect decisions I make. I’m a creature of routine and these rules play a part in that. I’ve never been diagnosed with OCD but my family may think I suffer from some form of it. I like to think I’m just consistent.
Here are some of mine. “It’s better to be 15 minutes early than 15 minutes late”. “Don’t ever buy cheap tires”. “Cheap shoes suck”. “Don’t work for someone you don’t respect”. “Don’t eat anything bigger than your head”. “Being honest is always the right thing to do”. “Helping others will make a bad day great”. “Walk through your fears, otherwise they own you”. Lastly, here is one that was said to my kids so often when they were growing up, they often use it as a parting statement. “Make good choices”. This is just a sampling of how I try to live. I’m pretty sure my wife and kids could double this list.
I recently discovered a rule that I share with some of my friends that was never talked about but came up when I was defending it. As you may have guessed I have pretty strong opinions which I try not to share unless I’m asked. Sometimes this is difficult for me. The unwritten rule that was discussed was; “Always stop on the right for fuel or food when travelling by car or motorcycle”. This is something I do, mainly because I’m impatient and if I stop on the right I get to resume in the direction I’m heading quicker than if I stop on the left. I’m convinced left turns take longer.
Now, the way I defend this belief when talking about it is to claim that right turns are safer. That’s why a GPS will try to take you somewhere with as few left turns as possible. I believe this to be true but it’s not the reason I stop on the right. Recognizing the real reason why I do things takes my ego out of the situation and helps me do them differently.
When it comes to riding a motorcycle my ego and impatience can get me injured or killed. My ego, for a number of years, kept me from wearing proper riding gear. It’s hard to be a badass biker when you’re wearing a helmet. Any close calls and speeding tickets I’ve had on a bike were a direct result of my impatience. Currently, I wear proper gear every time I ride and I’m really trying to be more patient. In recent years, I’ve taken an advanced rider course and plan on taking more. I want to be teachable. I’ve been riding for over 30 years and fortunately, I’ve never had a serious accident or injury. A new rule I’m adding to the list; “You have no control over someone else’s stupidity, but you have complete control over your own”.