Mazin Qumsiyeh: “Life’s Little Instruction Book”

Posted on Apr 16, 2020

Mazin Qumsiyeh writes from Beit Sahour.

There is a little book I have had for twelve years called “Life’s little instruction book: 511 suggestions, observations, and reminders on how to live a happy and rewarding life”. I was browsing through it again last night. Obviously many things I may not agree with…like “once in your life own a convertible (car)”. But there are many good ones. Here is a selection I share with those on [my Palestinian Christians emailing list]:

1-Admit your mistakes.

2-Be forgiving of yourself and others.

3-Say thank you a lot.

4-Never give-up on anybody. Miracles happen everyday.

5-Never deprive someone of hope. It might be all they have.

6-Teach some kind of class or workshop.

7-Show respect for teachers.

8-Praise in public, criticize in private.9-Stop blaming others. Take responsibility for every area of your life.

10-Clean and floss your teeth.

11-Think big thoughts but relish small pleasures.

12-Learn to listen, opportunity sometimes knocks very softly.

13-Have some knowledge (and respect) for three religions other than your own.

14-Be enthusiastic about the success of others.

15-Don’t be afraid to say these things: “I don’t know”, “I made a mistake”, “I need help”. “I am sorry”.

16-Don’t use time or words carelessly-neither can be retrieved.

17-Don’t trust politicians.

18-Do plant trees.

19-Do wash your hands.

20-Do more than is expected.

21-Keep good company.

22-Keep a daily journal.

23-Keep your promises.

24-Keep secrets.

25-Have impeccable manners.

26-Be original.

27-Be neat.

28-Be kinder than necessary.

29-Be best friend to your wife/husband/partner.

30-Be courteous to everyone.

31-Be a self-starter.

32-Be loyal.

33-Look for opportunities to make people feel important.

34-Focus on making things better, not bigger.

35-Seek opportunities, not security. Remember that a boat in harbor is safe but in time its bottom will rot.

36-Take charge of your attitude. Don’t let someone else choose it for you.

37-Take care f your reputation- it is your most valuable asset.

38-Know when to keep silent, know when to speak out-Live your life as an exclamation, not an explanation.

39-reduce, reuse, recycle.

40-Show respect for all living things.

41-Commit yourself to constant self-improvement.

42-Become the most positive and enthusiastic person you know.

43-Never underestimate the power of a kind word or deed.

44-Never ever give up.

45-Watch for big problems, they disguise big opportunities.

Stay Human, stay safe, stay positive

Mazin Qumsiyeh
A bedouin in cyberspace, a villager at home
Professor, Founder, and (volunteer) Director
Palestine Museum of Natural History
Palestine Institute of Biodiversity and Sustainability
Bethlehem University
Occupied Palestine
facebook pages