Life is one big classroom. Pass or fail.
These are some things I’ve learned, or know, or think I know…
Most people don’t take your advice. Wherever you are, you’re making an impression, good or bad. The experiences you’ve had in life shape the kind of advice you offer. Remember that everyone’s experiences are different and you’re advice may not be the best for everyone, so try not to be too offended if someone doesn’t take it.
“You’re only as good as your word.”
We have all heard that, but what does it mean? It’s who you are. It’s your integrity. People don’t pass through your life, they usually spiral through your life, so the same people pass through over and over. Be careful of how you treat them, because they will be back and they will remember you one way or the other. Think of others in your life who have let you down. Do you look forward to seeing them again? Be the person people look forward to meeting again by being true to your word!
“Kids grow up way too fast.”
I know we all hear that, but believe me, it’s true. Love them as much as you can at every stage. Appreciate the time you have with your children, and then with your grandchildren, should you be as blessed as I am! It’s gone in what feels like the blink of an eye.
Adversity Doesn’t Build Character, it Reveals it.
You’ve probably heard the saying, “Adversity builds character.” I disagree! Adversity doesn’t build character, it reveals it. Who are you when you are at your lowest point? That is your true character. Are you someone who never gives up and chooses to overcome challenges and grow from them, or someone who gives up and retreats into a safe space? This may not be an encouraging idea for some people! Many people go through life without really experiencing true adversity, and may never really know who they are. I say, put yourself in uncomfortable situations every day if you can! Find out what you’re made of! I’m betting the character that’s revealed is a lot stronger than you thought!
Adversity reveals who your true friends are.
Who stands with you through thick and thin? Who loves you at your worst? Those are your true friends. Sometimes friendships are unbalanced, one person gives more than the other. With true friends, that balance will shift as needed throughout your friendship. Be sure to nurture those true friendships the most!
How you see and judge others is not a reflection of them, it’s more a reflection of how you see and judge yourself.
Is there someone is your life that you just can’t stand? What about them drives you crazy? Why does it drive you crazy? In my experience, the things I don’t like about other people are things that remind me of the things I don’t like about myself. That’s hard to accept! Are you compassionate with yourself when that thing you don’t like about yourself rears its ugly head? Can you transfer that compassion to the person who drives you crazy? You probably won’t become the best of friends, but you might find it easier to be around them.
No matter where you go there you are.
Have you ever tried to find happiness by changing your surroundings? You don’t change just because you go somewhere new. You take all your personality traits (good and bad), beliefs, biases and preconceived notions with you. Do you ever think, “If I just lived in a different house, in a different town, in a different state or country, things would be different. I’d be different.” ? Think again! If you’re looking for your situation to solve your problems, it ain’t gonna happen! To see where the unhappiness lies, you have to look inward.
It’s not the circumstances it’s you.
Just like, “No matter where you go there you are,” you are the common element in everything you experience. If you find yourself blaming your circumstances for your failures and misfortunes, I hate to break it to you but, the circumstances don’t care whether you succeed or fail. It’s what you do with the circumstances that determine that!
Plant your flag somewhere.
Make your mark! Stand your ground. What is important to you? What are you willing to fight for? What can you offer the world that no one else can? If you can figure that out, you’ll find a life of purpose.
You’re either exercising your quit muscle, your grit muscle, or your success muscle.
Repeated behaviors are reinforced. It doesn’t matter if they are good or bad. Let’s say your arms are you resilience and success muscles and your legs are your quit muscles. If you go to the gym and only work on your arms, those muscles will strengthen and grow. Alternatively, if you choose to not exercise your legs, they will weaken and get smaller. You are the only one who can choose which muscles to focus on! I choose to focus on grit and success!
Forgiveness is the greatest gift of all that you can give somebody, including yourself.
Holding on to anger or resentment affects you, punishes you, tears at your soul and leaves a hole in your heart. The greatest gift you can give someone including yourself is FORGIVENESS. That doesn’t mean forgetting, however! Forgiveness does not mean you should allow that person to continue to treat you wrongly. Most importantly, forgive yourself! Did you live? Did you make mistakes? I hope so! Did you hurt yourself and people along the way, of course! But did you learn? Has it made you better, stronger, more understanding? Time to let go of what you can not change and forgive yourself! Do you feel it? It’s called acceptance, and self-love!
The things you think are important at each age, each decade, are really not important.
Think back to the things you thought were important when you were younger. Was it a job? A house or car? Negative people or associations? In hindsight, were they really so important? Did they give you happiness? Looking back, the only thing that matters is time. Did you waste it? Where did you spend it? Who did you spend it with? Things that really matter are the relationships I have, experiences I’ve had, and what I learned along the way.
How you treat your body is how your body will treat you, so be good to it, because you might need it a long time and it will reward you… or not.
I know, I know… we all have the best intentions of treating ourselves better. We start with lofty goals and then are disappointed and give up when we “fail” at our goals. First of all, I want to tell you that the only way you can fail is by giving up! Second, it’s the little daily decisions and actions you take that count and will make the difference in the long run. Your quality of life will depend on how you have treated your body, mind and soul, so treat them well!
The same is true of your mind. You’re never too old to start something new.
Start a new business, a new venture, learn a new language, or a new skill. It will keep you young and your mind engaged and sharp!
Don’t sacrifice what you want most, for what you want at the moment.
In self-help books, you’ll find this said in one way or another. There’s something to be said for delayed gratification! Keep your eyes focused on the prize and don’t let the little decisions take you further away from your goals and your dreams.