Tag Archives: life

12 – 22 of #365LifeLessons – I missed a few

I never promised I’d keep ’em coming daily (did I?), just that I’d post at least 365 😉 So, to catch up, here’s 12-22.

12) Admit your mistakes – it’s the only way to truly improve from making them.

13) Don’t “Over-Google,” – some things in life are best learned from actual people – like your spouse, your Doctor, scientists, etc. Social insights only go so far.

14) If you keep people guessing, they’ll never be able to reproduce what you do. Stay the course, YOUR course. Even if others don’t quite get it, criticize it or wonder just what the hell you’re doing.

15) Believe in you. It’s the best investment you can make.

16) Know when to walk away. There are many times in life you’ll need to do so for your best interests.

17) Stop listening. Sometimes you have to ignore what the haters say and keep focused on the good things in your life.

18) Exercise. Always.

19)  Find champions. Not just those that you admire, but those that admire you and can inspire, lead and direct you as you navigate new challenges in life.

20) Be honest. It isn’t always easy, it’s often uncomfortable – but it’s always the best way (even if a little white lie right now seems the easiest way out).

21) Don’t underestimate yourself.  If you think you can’t, you can’t. But if you try, you’ll likely never regret it – and will always learn something new.

22) Turn the TV off. Or the computer, the iPod, iPad, whatever. Invest in people, books, music… learning – at least more than zoning out in front of the boob tube. You don’t want to be a boob, do you?

What I’ve Learned, What I’m Learning – #365LifeLessons

4 of #365LifeLessons – It’s Not Her Fault

Your spouse had an affair. Your boss stole your idea as her own. Your teacher gave you a failing grade. Guess what – it’s not her fault. Something else went wrong – take ownership for your part in any outcome, whether it was not heeding the signs, not speaking up, not studying or simply making the wrong choice. The sooner you start recognizing your role in outcomes, the sooner you start seeing better ones.

What I’ve Learned, What I’m Learning – #365LifeLessons

Do More of These While There’s Still Time

Today I read the eulogy of a woman who recently passed away at an age much too young. I didn’t know her, but who one of my good friends was lifelong buddies with her and had often described her with enthusiasm, laughter and admiration. The eulogy, written by one of the woman’s friends, was an amazing, heartfelt and descriptive narrative and it made me laugh, cry and of course, think about how short life is.

Why does it take death to remind us of things we should remember on a daily basis? It’s true – if you’re being honest and you’ve ever experienced the death of someone in your life, you know that you have a period of time after the funeral during which you think, “I’m going to be nicer. I won’t work so much. I’ll remember to be happy. I’ll spend more time with my spouse/kids/parents.”

And then life gets back in the way. And we get caught up in petty stresses and ridiculously long work days that pull us from the people that matter the most. Awards and accolades and corner offices become the priority. We forget to make the kid’s soccer games, or we get home too late to say good night… night after night after night until our kids are suddenly teenagers who don’t care to say goodnight to us anymore. Our egos take over and we forget that it’s time that really matters. Time with those who love us and those whom we love.

Don’t forget to take the time. It’s the one thing we’re guaranteed to run out of – and it’s up to you on how you spend it.

I’m not suggesting you throw caution to the wind, grab the sails and take off from your day job. As lovely an idea as it is, we do have to pay the bills and continue with the generally mundane tasks that life has in store for us. But we don’t have to let them take over all of our time. We don’t have to fall prey to letting what’s actually the least important things take over as most important. When someone reads your eulogy, will they talk about your work accolades or your personal relationships? Maybe both… .but you’ve heard before, you won’t be on that deathbed wishing you had worked more.

So today, I share with you some of the lessons I took from reading the eulogy of my friend’s friend. She sounded amazingly unique, but I think these are simple enough for any of us to remember and heed about life, and how we’re spending our time:

  • Laugh. Keep laughing.
  • Be adventurous.
  • Don’t conform. It’s so – boring.
  • Help others. Even when it’s “inconvenient” to you.
  • Don’t put yourself in a box – you don’t have to choose one thing to be or do for your entire life. You’re allowed to flip the script any time you want.
  • Love. Even when you’ve experienced the pain of losing it – love again.
  • Move on. Let go.
  • Keep the faith.
  • Keep going.
  • Give. More than you receive.
  • Surprise people with kindness. (Which reminds me of a sign I saw this weekend that made me laugh. It said, “Smile. It makes people nervous.” Why is that?!)
  • Take the time. Don’t just send a “hello” text. Write a letter. Send an unexpected gift. Make it clear how much people mean to you by giving them your time.
  • Say “Yes!” with gusto.

Thanks Sue, for sharing a little bit of Turquoise so her enthusiasm for life can keep going and touching others.

Dispensable Life Relationships

Relationships have been on my mind a lot lately. I’m reaching the time in life where a good deal of friends are getting divorced, middle age crisis’ are approaching and many people are seeking some new kind of inspiration. Some find this by taking up new hobbies, or running away from responsibilities, others by traveling and still others by buying things they don’t need or can’t afford.

The divorce thing is really tough to watch – in my most selfish moments it makes me wonder if sharing your most intimate thoughts and moments in life with another person is something that will come to haunt you. It is always in the back of my mind – is my “family” now always going to be so? Are these relationships worth emotional toil or are they dispensable? As relationships crumble – and mind you, divorce is not just about the man and wife – ever – I get so scared.

Then – I visit my folks’. But they are not the ones that give me faith (well…I shouldn’t say that – they give me some faith, having been married since they were 17- and 19-years-old – they are now in their 60s). I get to see my 84-year-old, sprite Grandfather, seen below (photo courtesy of one brilliant brother, Brian Dilg.) He has seen so much in life. His mother passed away when he was six, his step mother died when she was 13. He had another stepmother – the Nana that I knew – who embraced and loved him and he, her…. But…

2007-12-26-016

… the biggest, most wondrous thing about Papa is his love for his wife. He met her when he was 13. She passed away last November from Alzheimer’s. For the last 20 or so years of her life he stood by her side – in a nursing home for the most part – every single day. He stayed by her when she started to lose her memory. He stayed when she began getting lost, running away and throwing things at him. He stayed when she completely forgot him and couldn’t function anymore (although, she always kissed him back – the one human reaction she never lost) and he stayed when many, many people would not have. My Grandparents’ story around the theft that is Alzheimer’s is a post for another time. For today, I thank Papa for showing me that real love can last, that not all relationships are dispensable and that in the end – faith is a daily leap that is a reward in and of itself.

Thanks, Papa.

Lessons from my Sons

 

The image “https://i2.wp.com/images30.fotki.com/v470/photos/9/939539/5560790/IMG_2134-vi.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors. I’m a fairly Type-A person – always on the go, pretty intense and not one to sit down for long, if at all. It’s also quite possible that I possess a few obsessive- compulsive behaviors – if you count noticing any time a picture frame is moved as obsessive….

Many elements in my life have likely contributed to my constantly-racing heart and go-go-go mentality – a German-work ethic, a childhood full of yellow legal pad “to do lists” from my father, a Catholic upbringing…the list goes on. In some senses, my intensity has served me well – at work, for example, where clients appreciate my tireless work ethic and constantly spinning mind. In my personal life it has been called into question from time-to-time, such as when my husband is hoping I can just focus on him during a conversation – and not tidy the counter, open the mail or keep my fingers on the keyboard while he talks.

Like anyone, I was nervous to have children. I like everything in its place and I wondered how in the world I would possibly balance my career and motherhood. But I’ve found over the years that not only am I doing an acceptable job at juggling, but my sons (ages 5 and 2) are helping me to relax a bit – ironically, when I’m busier than ever – as they continue to teach me every day some very important lessons:

• Messes can be cleaned

• Relaxing is not a bad thing – especially on the hammock with a sippy cup

• Trains are cool – bugs are too

• Love with all your might

• I should have appreciated my parents more

• Some loud music, crazy dancing and beating a drum set does wonders for stress relief

• I can fish!

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