ZEN+ : Helping you Stay Young and Age Well

Where does wisdom come from? And 3 questions to help you find it…

By Marcus Santer


Here’s my favourite quote from this week:

“Wisdom comes from real life experiences. We live in a world that’s full of information but it’s starving for wisdom.”
Inky Johnson

This week I truly experienced that doing the right thing doesn’t always feel good.

Let me explain…

So three years ago I managed to get on the waiting list of one of the hottest knife makers in the world.

Just before he stopped taking orders for good.

I was really lucky.

And earlier this week I got an email from him saying he was getting close to my name and was I still interested in him making a knife for me?

Now you’ve got to know we’re talking $1,200 just for the basic knife before you get into decorative options.

And I was sorely tempted.

I mean, I was at the top of the list, a list most collectors will never even be able to get on.

​​​​​​​It was my turn to get something really unique.

For real…

This guys knives are in such demand they sell for two or three times as much on the second hand market.

But there was a problem.

Because like many people, cash is kinda tight right now.

So eventually after much squirming and soul searching I replied back to him and said: “Thanks for the opportunity but I’m going to have to say no.”

Now then, even though I knew it was the right thing to do…

It still burned.

And I felt confused, because how can doing the right thing feel so crappy?

Truth is, three years ago I’d have sold a load of gear, lied to Clarabella to get access to some of my savings and pretty much done whatever I needed to to get the cash.

And then when the knife finally arrived…

I’d feel good for a day or two and then I’d feel guilty.

And a week or so later, it would sit in a draw, gathering dust and forever be stained with negative emotion whenever I looked at it.

At least this has been my previous experience on how such events turn out.

Let’s just say there’s a reason it took me five years to pay off my credit card debt.


Later when I explained all this to Clarabella over a cup of green tea, I realised that even though I know I’d done the right thing, it still hurt. But now I owned this wisdom from my own direct experience. It wasn’t something I’d read about or some cool line in a film.

I’d lived it.

But I also realised that by the end of the week I’ll have forgotten all about it.


If I’d gone through with the purchase, it would have hurt forever.

So how can you benefit from this post?

Keep reading and I promise I’ll make it worth your while.

You see, as a writer I like to spend a few moments each morning reflecting back on the previous day, all the while looking for answers to these questions:

  1. What did I notice?
  2. What stood out?
  3. What did I learn?

And I consider if I’m able to take my thoughts and use them to say one new thing I’m prepared to stand behind.

And then I write.

That’s exactly how this post you’re reading today came about.

So what about you?

When you review your yesterday…

  1. What did you notice?
  2. What stood out?
  3. What private lesson did you learn?

You don’t have to write your discoveries down, but you’ll find these three simple questions asked on a regular basis can help you to increase your wisdom.


Because contrary to popular belief, you don’t always get wiser as you get older.

Ugh, ugh.

It’s what you deliberately notice and what you actively learn from your own life experiences… That’s how you get wiser.

And there’s true value in that.

Right, back to work, because the HAP book ain’t gonna write itself =)

Bye for now


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