My Top 24 At 42- Lessons It's Taken Me A Lifetime To Master

I look at my life sometimes and wonder how I’ve been able to jam-pack so much into it.  My Type-A personality may have a little something to do with it but for as long as I can remember, I’ve always jumped into everything with both feet, rarely looking around to see if it was safe or not and I suppose that’s what makes me who I am.  It’s strange, I don’t feel 42. I don’t believe I look 42 (whatever that’s supposed to look like), and I certainly don’t act 42.   Yet, when sitting back and taking stock of my life as I did recently on a particularly and purposely quiet day which is rare, I decided to make a list of all of the significant things it took me so long to learn that now make things easier for me. Sometimes I fall back, there are times where I still have self-doubt on some of these or I have to work harder to maintain them but the fact remains that they’re all there.  They’re real. They’re mine, and possibly yours too, and I celebrate them every day. There’s still so much more to learn and I embrace the unknown, but still it feels damn good to have these under my belt. I hope they help in some way to remind you of all of the awesomeness and strength you have that makes you YOU.  The rest, my friends, is just bullshit getting in the way. And nobody’s got time for that…

 

  1. I don’t have to be the best, I just have to be the best ME.
  2. You need person in your life that you can tell everything to, and I mean everything. If you have more than that, well, you’re just a lucky mother fucker!
  3. On that note, I don’t know where I’d be without my friends. Likely nowhere.  As my best friend likes to tell me, “You’d be nothing without me”
  4. There is always going to be someone taller, faster, smarter, more accomplished, more attractive, more catching-someone’s-eye more than I do, and it’s ok because I’m happy with who I am and what I’ve got.
  5. My identity is not tied to my weight.  At least not any longer.
  6. I’ve spent far too much time in my life worrying about what I eat, what I look like, and wanting to be smaller than I am but I’ve arrived at a place where I am at peace. And I’m done obsessing.  Funny enough, that, plus a bit of a new fitness routine is changing things for me more than I thought possible, without me being obsessed with it. 
  7. Curves are in fact pretty damn gorgeous.
  8. Heartbreak is only temporary. Even when it feels like it will NEVER go away, it will.
  9. I’m good at a lot of things but I’m terrible at others. As long as the things I’m terrible at don’t get in the way, I’m ok with that.
  10. Return phone calls, emails and texts.  Think about how it feels to be on the other side of that when you don’t.
  11. When someone you love passes away, it just sucks. People will try to help, comfort you, distract you but it’s painful and it never goes away. We just have to find a way to deal with it and there’s no miracle cure.
  12. If you have a problem or issue, fix it.  Nothing goes away because you ignore it.  Not work stuff, not relationship stuff, not health stuff. Pretending it’s not there shouldn’t ever be the option.
  13. Be flexible. I used to be more “it’s my way or the highway” – I might always think it now but I’ve learned to be practical about it and compromise more. 
  14. If you get a vibe, it’s usually right. I know right away who I’m going to be lifelong friends with, within minutes of meeting them. I know who’s going to be a good person to work with and who’s rather going to cause me endless agita.  Whenever I’ve gone against that feeling in my stomach, something bad has transpired.  So I try not to do it anymore.
  15. I’m never embarrassed to try to speak a foreign language. When I was young, it was mortifying but if you just at least try, people are so appreciative. It doesn’t matter if you can’t do it perfectly.  The fact that you can even do it at all, in some way is impressive. Don’t hide behind it if you’re not fluent yet.
  16. Say everything. Get it all out, leave nothing out, no matter what it is.  Know that when you have to face something, that you gave it 110%. Nothing to me is worse than NOT saying something I feel, no matter what it brings.  Fight or argue if you have to if it comes to that and get through it.
  17. Never be afraid of confrontation.
  18. Some people, especially when it comes to work, will light imaginary fires just to stay relevant. They do that because they have nothing meaningful to contribute. Learn early to identify them and keep a distance. And don’t be afraid to call their shit out when you can with real life examples and solutions.
  19. Don’t chase way too hard. If it’s meant to happen, it will in some way. Gravitate to the good.
  20. Your truth is your truth. Embrace it. Whether it’s that you watch reality TV,  you enjoy an occasional taboo indulgence, you shop far too much online, if that’s what makes you OK then it’s fine. 
  21. Not everything is as it appears. Especially on Facebook =) Give yourself a break. Little secret- we ALL have weekends sometimes with no special plans or nothing amazing to do. It’s OK. It’s called real life.
  22. Everybody’s got “something”.  Even those you think have it perfect.
  23. Rediscover the power of a smile.  You’ll be surprised how differently people react around you when you walk around projecting an air of feeling good.
  24. Sometimes, though, I still am the girl with the hand on the hot stove, that needs to touch it 5 times before I learn something.  It happens, and it’s OK. As long as it’s learned in the end.