I want to share some life lessons that I learned along my path to perhaps help you on yours. Here are some of the simple reminders we can all use from time to time.
Life is full of choices. There are going to be times when you make the wrong choice. You have to learn from those times the most.
There will also be plenty of bumps in the road for everyone. No matter obstacle is in your way, always move forward. You will have days where you feel the weight of the world on your shoulders, take a breathe and keep moving forward.
Time never stops. It’s always ticking away. There is no extra time for feeling bad for yourself. Figure out what you need to figure out, but always focus on being present in the moment. Remember, there is no sense in wasting good day today due to a bad day or moment in the past. You can’t change the past but you can always live in the present and craft a better future.
I hate to tell you this but you’re going to mess up, so be ready to give yourself grace. We are often our own worst enemies. A lot of the time, we get in the way of our own happiness and success due to some guilt we feel.
When we mess it up, it’s not always easy to hold ourselves accountable. However, it’s usually necessary.
As human beings, messing up and making the wrong choices are just part of the learning process. If you’re aware of the things you could have done better and choose to hold yourself accountable, you can usually make amends, learn how to do better next time, and move forward guilt-free. Holding yourself accountable, while also giving yourself some grace, allows you to move forward in a positive direction.
You should always try to find reasons to smile, especially on the darkest of days. Smiles are contagious and yours may just light up someone else’s world. Smiling will also make you feel better.
Life will throw you some major curveballs. You may have a hard job that you don’t like. People you know will get sick and pass on. The list of traumas people face in their lives is unending. You never know what someone else is dealing with on your good days. Your smile may just give someone hope on their dark days. Smile often.
The small things that you do can literally change the world. That is why you should only try to share your positive vibes.
“Patience is a virtue” is an old saying for a reason. Patience is a skill that is often underrated. Like any skill, patience gets better with practice. All sorts of things will test your patience and you should be thankful about that.
Like most things, perception is everything. Try being thankful for the little things that test your patience. Acknowledge these little tests and pat yourself on the bat privately when you pass them.
The more we practice patience the less we will mess things up, especially in the heat of battle. One of the best things you can do is take a step back when things are testing your patience. Take a step back and breathe. We usually make better choices after taking that moment.
Don’t compare yourself to others, especially on social media. There is little value in comparing yourself to others in any way, shape, or form. You really shouldn’t care what the Jones are doing. Focus on what you’re doing and compete with the you from yesterday.
You can waste a lot of time and cause a lot of hurt by wondering what other people are doing or getting out of life. An easy way to avoid that trap is to focus on being present in the moment. Keep your mind going in a positive direction and positive things will come your way.
If you’re doing anything worth doing, there will be plenty of haters and critics. Ignore the haters and the critics. Only take advice from people you would trade positions with.
I’m not saying to go bankrupt following a pipe dream. My advice is to take criticism with a grain of salt and always consider the source. The reality is few people are going to see everything the way you see it. Half of the people in the world will tell you that you’re wrong no matter what you say or do. That is just the way that it is.
Be pragmatic, but only absorb positive vibes.
It’s very important that you don’t judge others for a variety of reasons. We all have our good days and bad ones. We all also have our regrettable moments. Taking time to judge others is not going to help you with your goals. It’s also hard to help someone or give them positive vibes if you’re judging them unfavorably.
Putting your critical cap on will hurt your creativity. It also hard to maintain a positive mind while thinking critically of others. Be helper, not a judge.
My dad used to tell me to breathe a lot, because I was a hyper kid, especially when I had something to say. A lot of people have had to remind me to stop and take a breath during my four plus decades walking the planet. My old chess coach said it best, “You make better moves when you stop to think and take a breath.”
In today’s high-tech instant gratification world, it’s really easy to respond in a second. It’s easy to tell a troll to go jump in a lake. It’s also easy to interpret meanings behind written text. We often read things out of context due to our mood of the moment.
Give people the benefit of the doubt. Take a second to breathe and reread or rethink about the words someone is sharing with you. Take a second to consider their perspective and ask follow up questions instead of making statements.
My old chess coach was right because we do make better moves when we stop and think first.
This is my least favorite tip, because it’s the hardest to do at times.
I grew up in a family that had many challenges like most of you reading this. Our family went through battles with addiction, alcoholism, and many different types of abuse.
People that abuse you are usually doing so because they have had their share of abuse. That doesn’t give them an excuse or free pass to abuse you. We all have had our problems, granted some are way worse than others, but we can’t continue the circle of abuse.
We have to break the chains that bind us and hold us back in all ways, shapes, and forms. This means, we have to set boundaries and establish ways to communicate with people in a productive and loving way.
It’s always important to let them know where your boundaries are. Boundaries become even more important when people are putting you down, hurting themselves, or making you feel negative feelings. People that can’t respect those boundaries are not really helping you. They’re not helping themselves either.
Therefore, you have to help them and yourself by moving on. We are what we eat and take in. Being in a toxic relationship really isn’t helpful to anyone.
If you truly want to help people grow while growing yourself, you need to be consistent with your boundaries and personal accountability. You also need to fill your cup first because you can’t fill from an empty cup.
We were born to help each other. It’s in our DNA. Don’t let society or negative experiences pushing you away from helping others.
Life lessons are often learned the hard way, so I hope you give these tips a little extra thought. I certainly wished that I listened to some of the old-school advice from my parents at a younger age.
Many people will tell you their definition of success. Personally, I feel like is too short for negative thoughts or feelings, so I define success with happiness. We all deserve a happy life. Help others live a happier life and you’re will always have a reason to smile.
Thanks for reading!
Please feel free to share this with anyone you think may be able to use it.
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