32 Years of Experience. 32 Maxims to Live by.

List of Maxims | 32 Years of Experience. 32 Maxims to Live by.


Today is my birthday.


Every year, on my birthday, I endeavor to continue a tradition I started two years ago where I offer you a number of maxims that correlates to my physical age.


This year, the number turns 32.


It is a significant number in the aging sequence since it illustrates the beginning of my immersion in the fourth decade of my life.


The following maxims illuminate the feelings that grow inside me during that period.




List of Maxims




Age doesn’t lead to wisdom. Awareness does. Awareness of yourself, of your environment, of the world as a whole. All people age. Very few age wisely.




You are the conglomeration of your biggest influencers. Ergo, pick the people you admire with extreme scrutiny and diligence. They will shape your persona and mold your future self.




The complexity and abstraction of this world will inevitably frustrate you. It is your duty to ameliorate these two forces through a lifestyle devoted to perpetual self-exploration, self-scrutiny, and self-evolution.




The propensity of social agents to demonstrate ballsy attitude is deemed way more important by the rest of society than the ability of the same agents to showcase actual prowess in a specific skill. Emotionality plays a role in this, for it is through emotional influence that a person can tantalize interest and appeal to others.




Leaders usually take more credit than they actually deserve, for people seek a representation of themselves more in individuals and less in groups.




Diversity can be both impactful and destructive. Diversity can indeed offer fresh perspectives on stagnating worldviews, but if it surpasses the need for homogeneity it can easily convulse the substrate of our social edifice.




When it comes to knowledge and wisdom acquisition, compounding is the most pertinent term that comes to mind.




Anyone that believes that intelligence is just a manifestation of IQ does not understand intelligence. Intelligence is the ability of humans to push the envelope of conventional wisdom and push back against everything that impedes their progress. Any action that gravitates towards this mindset is an act of intelligence.




Writing is not just a skill. I dare to say that writing is a form of catharsis. For it is through writing that the mind empties and the psyche heals itself.




Nietzsche said that “we have art in order not to die from the truth.” The truth is, oftentimes, so painful that people will prefer to cling to a delusional reality than the truth itself. Art can present truth in a symbolic way and it is through this interplay between art and truth that we can stay alive in the sight of its magnitude.




Open-mindedness serves as a rapture in being through which the individual finds realization and reconciliation with truth.




The only way to enact control over the processes that we decide to internalize is to slow down and take our time, even if the whole world tells us otherwise.




Neuroticism is nothing more than manifested scream from your deep self that seeks to escape the confines of a limited mode of being.




A painful battle with the shadow can lead to a peaceful coexistence with the soul.




You are a marvel in the making. An anthropomorphic manifestation of the cosmos expressing itself in a poetic way. Do justice to your future self and embrace the miracle of your being.




Accept both the good and the bad with equanimity, for this symbiosis constitutes a significant parameter in the pursuit of unity with the cosmos.




The deleterious effects of stress on the body will become more apparent to you with age. You think you have time, but at some point, you will realize that you don’t have the luxury to allow stress to poison you more. Savor yourself. Savor your body. Harbor your psyche.




Reject clichés and mundane topics. Be innovative and daring. Allow style and panache to ooze out of your every creation.




When you talk about yourself to others be there with them. Share your story for them. Detail them an unabashedly psychedelic voyage through your own mind.




Some people will make your highs higher but also your lows more frequent. Be grateful for that. For your highest highs will allow you to come closer to your dream for self-transcendence and your frequent lows will teach you the fundamentals of anti-fragility.




The expedient might be convenient but convenience will never teach you how to chart a course out of the mangrove swamp of your inner world.




We all have a cross to bear. The cross will never disappear, same as Sisyphus will never stop rolling the boulder up the hill. It’s not the cross that counts. It’s our ability to make the bearing easier than it appears.




Spirituality is the yeast of the relationship, dialogue is the flour and indulgence is the sugar. Spirituality helps the relationship grow, dialogue helps it stick together, indulgence helps it become more tasteful.




The level of your likeability and influence is inversely proportional to the level of your involvement in trivial matters. Likable people are considered leadership archetypes. Leaders rarely deal with trivial matters.




There are a handful of catalytic moments in one’s life. One of these is without a doubt the moment the individual realizes the insignificance of external comparison with other social agents. Comparison can offer some cues with regards to the course one could chart but perennial comparison is to a person as destructive as water is to dust.




It is easier and more fruitful to aim for something specific than for something abstract. Your vision should act as a compass for that. When you focus on something, everything else blurs out. This isn’t by accident; it is by design.




A theory you adhere to will gain instant currency the moment you manage to build with it explanatory bridges from the subjective and phenomenal to the objective and measurable.




A theme central to the evolution of your persona is a theme that favors sagacious re-invention to ill-formed stagnation.




There are only two truths. The moral truth and the scientific truth. The moral truth is based on common sense. The scientific truth is constantly re-evaluated.




When you marginalize and pathologize ecstasy, you end up with a reality so dull that the motivation to embrace a more joyful attitude dissipates in a vertigo of enforced misery.




Criticism should serve a purpose. Abortive criticism that serves just the need of the critic to let off steam is just a form of noise in an already too noisy world.




Openness, agreeableness, neuroticism, conscientiousness, extraversion. These are the five most significant personality traits. Understanding their significance is tantamount to solving the riddle of who you really are.


Closing Remarks


I will try to keep writing maxims because they constitute a convenient way for me to express ideas central to my being.


Most of you embrace them with enormous excitement and anticipation, so I feel grateful for that.


Thank you for your support.


If you enjoyed these maxims, you will definitely enjoy 30 Challenges-30 Days-Zero Excuses. This a book that aims to re-engineer your reality in an unprecedented way. It will help you internalize the majority of the ideas I just discussed and it will bring an extreme level of clarity to your life.


Also, don’t forget to subscribe to my newsletter to get my articles in your inbox on a weekly basis. It is awe-inspiring, free, easy to unsubscribe and some great resources will wait for you once you confirm your subscription


I am off to celebrate. Have a good one.

Adrian Iliopoulos

I am the founder and main contributor at "The Quintessential Mind" - A unique personal blog that offers a holistic approach to self-development. I am striving to create high-quality content by investing in a reality-based form of self-help, informed by a deep understanding of psychology, philosophy and my own personal experiences and social adventures.
Adrian Iliopoulos