Moms love giving advice to children and passing on their worldly wisdom. Over the years, my mom probably suggested over 1000 solutions to my age-old questions regarding life. Here are 10 things I learned from my mother that actually stuck.
10 Things I learned from My Mother
1. Always say yes to an adventure
Every summer my parents would load up the family truckster, and we would drive to “some place”. Mom would keep a daily log of how many miles we had driven, where we ate breakfast, where we at lunch and dinner, which hotel we ended up at for the night and everything in between of substance. A few months after the trip we would sit around and reminisce and relive all the little details. Mom sent me off to Europe in 10th grade on a school trip and installed a love of travel that has stayed with me to this day.
2. Honor who you are and take care of you first
Mom instilled in us that we must believe in ourselves unapologetically. She would say. Believe in your decisions and those around you will believe in you too. Be an Individual. Remember to take care of yourself first before taking care of others. Put the “Oxygen Mask” on yourself first, so that you can help your neighbor. Get your ducks in a row so you can be ready for life as it comes to you. Keep your tank full so you can be present with the important people in your life.
Which brings me to:
3. Be careful who you let into your inner circle
People show you who they are. “Observe them,” she would say. Be clear on what attributes you value in others and keep firm boundaries with your closest confidantes. Do not divulge too much to those you do not hold in your inner circle and keep it positive, nurture those relationships like you would a little puppy. Recognize those that don’t hold your values. If someone shares gossip with you, consider that they could they be gossiping about you too. To attract good friends be one.
4. Stay Present
Remember to stay in the moment and enjoy the smallest and biggest blessings life offers you. Small blessings turn into bigger ones. You have to laugh at the absurdity of life. After every challenge, hurdle, or obstacle you will look back and see the ridiculousness life throws at you and gain a perspective to be better than you were before. Trust it and embrace it.
5. Always have clean nails
And clean behind your ears, your belly button…you get the picture? Cleanliness is next to Godliness and so on. As Muhammed Ali said, if you look good, you feel good, and if you feel good, you play good and when you play good they pay good. ‘Nuf said.
If you look good, you feel good, and if you feel good, you play good and when you play good they pay good.
6. Hard work always pays off
People see this and will know it about you. It helps to discover what you truly enjoy doing and do it passionately! That thing you love and enjoy doing will fulfill you immensely. When you get tired of it, go find the next thing you love to do and do it as long as it fires you up inside! Her best piece of business advice was “Son, even if you win the rat race, you are still a rat.”
7. Have fun
Have fun. Find friends who like to do things you like to do. Take that salsa class, go mountain climbing, run a marathon or learn to speak Greek.. and do it for yourself! Put yourself out there and try new things. When she was dropping me off at college she only said three things between the tears….study hard, laugh a lot and keep your honor.
8. Hobbies are the spice of life
Keep up with the fun stuff you like to do. My mom used to ask us at dinner if money was no object what would you do with yourself for the next five years? I would say things related to travel and speed. I would learn to sail a boat, and sail it from California to Florida, become a race car driver. She would always say something about learning Oceanography or learning sign language or learning to play the piano. She wanted to make sure that we always had a love of learning and growing intellectually.
9. You can do anything
Mom always told us that we could handle anything life throws at us. My mom encouraged me but didn’t fix my problems. She had faith in me that I could handle anything from friend drama to professional choices and education decisions. So far so good.
10. Get your rest so that you can rise early
I never feel as alive as I do when I get up early in the morning. I remember walks on the beach with my Mom early in the morning. Looking out over the vast ocean I felt like I could concur the world. She would often quote Twain and Emerson. One of my favorites is a quote by Emerson. “In the morning, a man walks with his whole body, in the evening, only with his legs.”
It was not until much later in life did I realize how great of an impact my Mom had on who I have grown up to be. I always thought I took after my Dad more but now realize my Mom shaped who my Dad was as well. The native Americans believe in Mother Earth and from that we all come. I tend to agree with them. Hug your mother, give her a kiss everyday not just Mother’s Day and always remember the little things she gave you.