I’ve spent a solid two months avoiding wordpress. I’ve had ideas bounce around in my head, but I could not get the thoughts onto paper. For the last few days, I have tried to escape the nagging feeling inside of me to write. Eventually, like always, I get a subtle reminder that this is my process. So, although I struggled with the thought of people’s judgment, I remembered the reason I started to write in the first place: It’s my process. It allows me to breathe. It is for me.
The other day, I was thinking about things I wish I would have paid attention to… things I often find I have to remind myself of. So, I decided to make a list.
“No” is a complete sentence.
I have to remind myself every single day that “No” is a complete sentence. It is perfectly ok to say “No” without having to explain yourself. It is ok to say “No” to your best friend, your mother or your employer.
Tell your friends and family you love them. Every day.
We don’t know when anyone’s time here is up. Make sure the people you care about know it… even if you’re in a fight. My grandmother always said, “Never go to bed angry”. I still live by that today.
You can do things that are painful, with kindness.
Breaking up with someone doesn’t have to be mean. Provide love in your words and actions instead of hate. Remember that at one point, it meant everything to be in love with him/her. Just because it changed, doesn’t mean you have to be hurtful. It’s the same when leaving a job, firing someone or simply shifting friendships.
Eat the cake.
But go to the gym…
Create your own path.
Not everyone has the same design for life. Your journey isn’t going to look exactly like anyone else’s. Find what makes you happy and do that. Even if you’re doing it alone.
Listen to your parents.
They know what they’re talking about… they’ve lived longer. It may be hard to hear, but they generally want good things for you. They’ve spent a good portion of their lives molding you into the human being you are. It was done with love. And they won’t always be there to look to for guidance, so pay attention.
It is very rare for me to sit long enough to watch a movie or tv show, and for that I am grateful. Get outside. Get back to the basic art of “earthing”. Learn about your environment and become a part of it. TURN OFF THE TECHNOLOGY.
Pay attention in school.
Some day you will want to know who invented the cotton gin (Eli Whitney… I think). Your kids will ask you about the books, history and math. You will learn something without realizing it…. make sure it’s the right things.
Treat your body well.
Really. You only get one body… when it’s broken, it can be hard to fix. Listen to your doctor. Get sleep, eat right, exercise.
Find your own spirituality.
Whether it’s Buddha, God, Allah, Floyd… Just seek it. No one has the right to tell you which spiritual path to follow. You also don’t have the right to tell anyone which spiritual path to take. But whatever you do, find something to believe in.
Explore the world before you. You’re roots will always be waiting wherever you plant them… Get out and see the world… at least the parts you want to.
Learn to say “I’m sorry”.
And mean it. Change your actions while you use your words.
Being happy sometimes means taking the high road. You don’t always have to be right or think you are right in order to be happy.
Listen to music.
As much as you can, as often as you can. When you can’t find the words for your emotions, you can find the song. Music makes the world go round.
Do something new.
Frequently. Learn to water ski, kayak or climb a mountain. Do things that get you outside of your comfort zone… they will make you the most happy in the long run. Plus, you never know until you try.
Learn to forgive yourself and others. No one is perfect.
Accept people the way they are.
Everyone is different. People are who they are for a reason, and I can promise you, its got nothing to do with you. Accept them for who they are and appreciate the differences AND similarities.
When you don’t think you can… do it anyway. Tell that guy you like him. Run a marathon. Write the book.
AND MOST IMPORTANTLY
Be kind to yourself.
Look at yourself and see beauty. Learn to love your curves, your wrinkles and any other “flaws”… The scars on your body are reminders of the battles you’ve fought to stay alive. Embrace them. Know that our differences make us human, not good or bad… God doesn’t make junk.
There are so many more things that I hope to remember, but I can’t even remember them now… and that’s ok. What I know today is that reminders will come gently and with force, depending on what I need on any given day. Today, this was needed… to write my truth, to find my words, and to just see… to see the things before me, that are so incredibly important, yet often, so far away.