What a man is contributes much more to his happiness than what he has, or how he is regarded by others. What a man is, and so what he has in his own person, is always the chief thing to consider; for his individuality accompanies him always and everywhere, and gives its color to all his experiences …

From Arthur Schopenhauer in The Wisdom of Life:

…what a man is contributes much more to his happiness than what he has, or how he is regarded by others. What a man is, and so what he has in his own person, is always the chief thing to consider; for his individuality accompanies him always and everywhere, and gives its color to all his experiences. In every kind of enjoyment, for instance, the pleasure depends principally upon the man himself. Every one admits this in regard to physical, and how much truer it is of intellectual, pleasure. When we use that English expression, “to enjoy one’s self,” we are employing a very striking and appropriate phrase; for observe — one says, not “he enjoys Paris,” but “he enjoys himself in Paris.” To a man possessed of an ill-conditioned individuality, all pleasure is like delicate wine in a mouth made bitter with gall. Therefore, in the blessings as well as in the ills of life, less depends upon what befalls us than upon the way in which it is met, that is, upon the kind and degree of our general susceptibility. What a man is and has in himself — in a word personality, with all it entails, is the only immediate and direct factor in his happiness and welfare. All else is mediate and indirect, and its influence can be neutralized and frustrated; but the influence of personality never.

“It’s very important,” said Mr. Buffett, “always to live your life by an inner scorecard, not an outer scorecard.”

In 2008, Mohnish Pabrai and Guy Spier paid $650,100 for a charity lunch with Buffett. Spier, a hedge fund manager based in Zurich, later recalled the meal in his 2014 memoir, The Education of a Value Investor, which I helped him write.

What stood out most for him from this three-hour masterclass with Mr. Buffett was one life-changing piece of advice.

“It’s very important,” said Mr. Buffett, “always to live your life by an inner scorecard, not an outer scorecard.”

Mr. Buffett illustrated this by asking: “Would you prefer to be considered the best lover in the world and know privately that you’re the worst—or would you prefer to know privately that you’re the best lover in the world, but be considered the worst?”

A man who becomes conscious of the responsibility he bears towards a human being who affectionately waits for him, or to an unfinished work, will never be able to throw away his life

Viktor E. Frankl in Man’s Search for Meaning p. 88

[The] uniqueness and singleness which distinguishes each individual and gives a meaning to his existence has a bearing on creative work as much as it does on human love. When the impossibility of replacing a person is realized, it allows the responsibility which a man has for his existence and its continuance to appear in all its magnitude. A man who becomes conscious of the responsibility he bears towards a human being who affectionately waits for him, or to an unfinished work, will never be able to throw away his life. He knows the ‘why’ for his existence and will be able to bear almost any ‘how’”