35 Tiny Rules I Use In My Happy Quiet Life

Rules make life easier.

Chase Arbeiter
4 min readSep 18, 2021


Photo by Mark Duffel on Unsplash

When you’re younger, you despise routine, efficiency, and worst of all, rules. It feels too structured and mundane.

However, as you get older, make more extensive plans for your future, set goals, and have responsibilities and people who rely on you, rules become incredibly important. Developing your personal practices provides freedom in life. As Jocko Willink so famously says, “Discipline equals freedom.”

Rules or codes, or practices that you live by can bring more success, joy, and happiness. Finding the right ones takes time. But, once you do, they make life easier and eliminate so many decisions, leaving more headspace for more important things like creativity, production, and presence.

When it comes to rules, I think of that line from Nick Carraway in Great Gatsby, “I am slow-thinking and full of interior rules that act as brakes on my desires.”

Here are some rules I use in my life:

— Never check my phone for the first 60–90 minutes of the day.

— Sit in silence or read at lunch. This is a great time to steal some silence.

— Drive in the right lane on the highway unless you are passing someone. If you don’t think you are driving this way, please move over. I need to pass you.

— Eat the same 2–3 things at breakfast and lunch. It’s one less thing to spend your mental energy. Our lives are a series of decisions, and decision fatigue is very real.

— Always have 2 or 3 options for shirts that don’t need ironing and that can go with any color pants.

— Park in the back of a parking lot. It’s an opportunity to get a few more steps in each day.

— Dress comfortably without embarrassing your spouse. Dressing like a “grown-up” is ridiculous, outdated, and a rule made up by people who don’t smile.

— Let the other person get off the elevator before you go barreling in. It’s rude, clogs up space, and forces you to enter other’s personal bubbles.

— Round your ticket up and tip 20%. Judging their performance is one less thing I want to spend time on.



Chase Arbeiter

Building a 7-figure one-person writing business | Articles about the process, challenges, and insights | More long walks & pool days with family—less meetings.