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17 Important Life Lessons I Wish My Daughters Knew Earlier

17 Important Life Lessons I Wish My Daughters Knew Earlier

As a mother of two girls, there are many things that keep me awake at night. Our world is becoming smaller and increasingly artificial, reducing the chances of children learning life lessons that are so vital to them. If children don’t learn these lessons on their own, I take it as my responsibility to impart as much wisdom while I still can. And, here are 17 life lessons that I want my daughters to know before it’s too late.

1. Be Content

We live in an age of instant gratification, with the latest mobile phones and clothes becoming a statement to the world. Learning to be content from early on will help as your daughters grow up. They won’t always get what they want, and that’s okay.

2. It’s Okay To Make Mistakes

Firstly, everyone, no matter how perfect, has made mistakes, even your mother. Mistakes are part of growing up. The important thing is to learn from them. The bigger the mistake, the more there is to learn.

3. Life Isn’t Easy

Anyone that has ever achieved anything in life has done it with steely determination and without expecting anything to come for free. The only way to get what you want is to go out there and take it.

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4. Your Opinions Matter The Most

What others think of you doesn’t matter as much as what you think of yourself. People may try to impose their ideas of perfection on you and try to get you to conform to their ideals. As long as you know who you are and what you stand for, it shouldn’t affect you.

5. You Look Great As You Are

There will be pressure on you to look a certain way. There will be people that judge you based on your body, on how fat or thin they think you are. As long as your healthy, what they think doesn’t matter. Everyone is made differently, your beautiful just as you are.

6. Food Is Your Friend

Being skinny is not the same as being healthy. You may feel pressure to stop eating, or only eat “diet” food. These bad eating habits that will only spoil your health. You don’t need to starve yourself to lose weight. A balanced diet and a little exercise will go a long way.

7. Cherish True Friends

You’ll have plenty of friends that will come and go. But, there are a few that will stay with you through all the ups and downs life throws at you. Never take them for granted, true friendship is a valuable commodity.

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8. Kindness Is Key

A little kindness goes a long way. Even in situations where you have every right to be rude, maintaining your attitude and being sensitive to the situation will help define who you are.

9. Learn To Accept Change

In life, there’s only one thing that’s constant, and that’s change. The sooner you accept that fact, that faster you will be happier. Change can be used as fuel, to grow and become who you always wanted to be.

10. Have Fun

Having fun is one of life’s greatest gifts. Don’t get too caught up in things that may seem like the world now. They will become inconsequential in a few years. No matter what the situation, or how dreary it may look, find a way to have a little fun.

11. Set Goals, Work Towards Them

If you don’t know where you’re going, any road will take you there. A personal or professional goal, don’t be afraid to set lofty aims. Once you’ve decided what you’re aiming for, make sure you work towards them, even if it’s one small step at a time.

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12. Keep Your Faith

When times get hard, get on your knees and pray. Your faith is like an anchor; it will keep you grounded and help you overcome difficult situations.

13. Family Is Everything

As you grow, you’ll feel the need to stand up on your own. Especially in your teens, your relationship with your family may strain. It may seem like a burden rather than a blessing. The truth is you won’t find the same level of acceptance and love anywhere else.

14. Your Possessions And Your Values Are Separate Things

Having expensive clothes, the latest electronics, and fancy cars isn’t the answer to life’s problems. Things you own or the money you earn are not what should define your value. Those are easy come easy go, what will last is your character, your relationships, and your self-worth.

15. Love Isn’t Like The Movies

Know all those fairy-tale relationships where the princess live happily ever after? It doesn’t always work that way. Relationships need to be cared for and nurtured. Compromise and understanding are the core of happy families.

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16. There Isn’t Much You Cant do

The sky WAS the limit. You define your limits, not your situation or your environment.  If your focused, and willing to put in the hard work, there’s nothing that can stop you.

17. I’ll Always Be There For You

Whether you live next door or in another country, if you feel like you’ve made a mistake or just want to talk, I’ll always be there for you. Daughters are a precious gift; they seem to grow up so much faster than little boys. Life can be full of ups and downs; there is no way you can foresee what it’s coming and try and prepare for it. That’s why I hope these life lessons will help them when they need it the most.

Featured photo credit: http://freephotostags.com/ via freephotostags.com

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Last Updated on May 28, 2020

10 Success Principles for Living Your Dream Life

10 Success Principles for Living Your Dream Life

Are you stressed out and overwhelmed, wishing you had more time to do the things that really matter? Are you ready to do something better, something special in your life or your career?

You were born with a gift that no one else in the world can express like you. When you dance to your own music, you naturally develop your innate abilities and excel in work and life. You are a total rock star. But when you live someone else’s idea of who you should be, it throws off your groove.

Many people—maybe you—stopped following their dreams way too early in life because their talents were ignored, minimized, or shamed. They didn’t have the chops to win an American Idol competition or nab an Olympic gold medal, so they stopped expressing their inborn gifts altogether.

You don’t need to be an award winner to rock your life. Living your dream life is about discovering your superpowers and feeling vibrant and joyful when you use them. It’s about owning what makes you unique and finding like-minded people to support you.

Here are 10 success principles to help you live a rich and rewarding life on your terms that have worked with thousands of people in my workshops and will work for you, too.

1. Get a Hobby to Move Closer to Your Dreams

If you never became a professional dancer or a world-renowned author, it does NOT mean you should stop dancing or writing! These activities make you come alive, even if you “only” do them as favorite pastimes.

Engaging in a hobby is one of the most important success principles you can follow to move closer to your dreams.

When you try something creative for the first time or in a long while, you begin to see opportunities at work and in life that you were unaware of before. You also feel happier and more energized, according to a recent study from New Zealand.[1]

Some of my most burned-out executive clients reinvigorated their careers by discovering a creative outlet that refueled them after the workday ended. Research at San Francisco State University shows that having a hobby lowers stress and helps you succeed at work.[2]

So, give yourself permission to try new things and revisit old passions you gave up long ago. Setting aside just one hour a week for personal exploration can significantly change your life.

Who knows? Your creative outlet could transform into a thriving business or lead to a new profession down the road.

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2. Focus on Your Strengths, Not Your Weaknesses

Did you know that you are more likely to succeed when you develop your natural strengths rather than work on your weaknesses? The problem is that you probably don’t know where your true talents lie.

Here are a few options to help you discover your unique strengths. You can:

  • Take the VIA Character Strengths Survey[3]
  • Try Gallup’s CliftonStrengths Assessment[4]
  • Answer a few Superpower Questions

Once you understand what makes you tick, you can use these skills at work and your personal life to get more done in less time. If you boost your unique abilities through practice and study, you can accelerate your career and become a leader in a field that matters to you. It’s worth investing in yourself this way.

3. Jumping off a Cliff is NOT Required

Here’s the deal: most people are too afraid to change. When participants first come to my workshops, they tell me they have mouths to feed, bills to pay, and fear that if they follow their dreams, someone will get hurt.

The old saying “leap and the net shall appear” does not comfort them. Because they are hesitant to plunge into the unknown, they believe their only option is to stay put where they are in life. Can you relate?

You do not have to sacrifice the life you have now to start a new one. I was a psychology professor by day and singer by night for years before I transitioned into a full-time music career.

Just take a little time out each week to do what enlivens you through a hobby, volunteer work, etc. Get a feel for it.

Is it what you really want? If so, increase the time you spend doing it and make the transition when the time feels right.

4. Give Your Inner Critic Some Love

The main culprit that keeps you from stepping outside your comfort zone and getting the life of your dreams is KCRP or K-CRAP – the radio station that plays 24/7 in your head. The moment you try to do something interesting with your life it slaps you down with such chart-topping killer hooks as “Who do you think you are?” and “You’ll never be good enough!”.

Have you ever noticed that KCRP’s mean-spirited DJ sounds like your parents, teachers, bosses, and other authority figures who shut you down creatively? These folks don’t need to stifle you any longer (although they often still do) because your inner critic does it for them. That keeps you stuck in a rut.

To break free, try thinking of this DJ as a gruff old grandfather who gives you crap to keep you safe. Remember, this grumpy grandpa is woefully out of touch with the times. So, his stern opinions don’t really matter much, do they? Give him a pat on the back for his good intentions, and put your focus back on what makes you come alive.

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This success principle will give you the courage to venture into the unknown where you can dance to the beat of your own drummer.

5. Embrace Your Inner Weirdo

Many of us don’t go after our dreams because we’re afraid folks will find out how odd or strange we are. But our little eccentricities often turn out to be our greatest strengths. Yes, it’s good to be quirky.

Odds are, you lost track of your true passions and talents before you were even old enough to know you were getting off-track. You became slowly “adulterated” by learning to:

  • Take on family roles that don’t match who you really are.
  • Spit back what teachers taught you in school rather than risk getting bad grades for being original.
  • Hide parts of yourself that don’t seem acceptable to certain social groups.

The price for fitting in is that you may wind up leading a life that doesn’t fit you all that well. Your true calling becomes clear when you embrace what makes you different from others and allow yourself to stand out from the crowd, even if it feels awkward.

Often, the very qualities you view as your flaws are your greatest gifts.

6. See the Bigger Picture to Find Your True Calling

I cannot stress the importance of this success principle enough. Your true calling is right in front of you. But you may miss it because you’re looking for it in the wrong place.

To “see” it clearly, try widening your point of view.

Case in point: Maria felt she needed to retire early from being a police detective, so she could travel abroad. I encouraged Maria to think of ways that she could continue to serve as a law enforcer (a career she loved) and travel overseas at the same time.

A few months later, Maria landed a job with the United Nations in Bosnia training the local police force to understand and embrace human rights procedures.

Like Maria, you are an everyday rock star capable of accomplishing greater things than you can imagine. Is what you’re looking for right in front of you, too? Do you have an inkling of what it may be?

Look beyond your day-to-day activities, your current job, and even the town you live in. View your life from an eagle’s perspective and be open to new possibilities.

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7. Try a Little Wish-List Magic

Pretend I’m your fairy godmother and I give you permission right now to be your most magnificent self. What kind of life would be music to your ears? It doesn’t matter whether it seems unattainable or even downright crazy. Write it down on a wish list.

Get quiet. Be honest. Think big.

What would you like your career, your relationships, your health, your finances, and your spiritual life to be like? Jot down enough details so that your wishes seem tangible to you. Then, look at this list every morning before you start your day and every night before you go to sleep.

Sounds silly? It’s not. It works! Permitting yourself to daydream about a rich and fulfilling life is the first step to manifesting it.

8. Take Breaks to Get Clues About Your Ideal Future

Did you know that working straight through to a deadline leads to diminishing returns? Research shows that taking a break for 15 minutes every 75 to 90 minutes can help you recharge, refresh your focus, and get more done in less time.[5]

Wait, it gets better! A Stanford study shows that walking increases your creative output increases by 60 percent. Doing repetitive activities such as walking, running, riding your bike, swimming, and sweeping allow solutions to problems to pop into your mind out of nowhere.[6]

What does this success principle have to do with creating your dream life?

These mini-breaks allow you to get vital clues for what to do next to attain your ideal future. Plus, you won’t waste precious time and energy getting lost in other people’s agendas.

9. Take Action on Your Inspired Ideas

Once an inspired thought pops into your mind, take action.

This is one of the most powerful success principles for turning your dreams into reality; the sooner the better. Whatever it is—from calling an old friend to taking a new route home—be sure to do it!

Pay attention to your oddball hunches. You need to go after what you want, not just dream about it. As comedian Jim Carrey warns,

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“You can’t just visualize and go eat a sandwich.”

10. Count Your Rockstar Moments

Still not sure you have what it takes to get your dream life? This final success principle is guaranteed to help.

Make a list of everything you’ve ever accomplished. As you read back through it, put a star next to each item, and let it sink in.

You’ll be pleasantly surprised by how good you’ll feel about yourself afterward. You’ll also see how effective you’ve been in the past at getting what you want. You’ve succeeded before, you can succeed again.

You already rock. You just need to own it. Trust me, you’ve got this!

Final Thoughts

Eleanor Roosevelt said,

“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.”

Following these success principles will help you find the time and energy to do the things that really matter and live with clear intention.

By spending just one hour a week doing something you love, focusing on your strengths and achievements, embracing what makes you different, and acting on inspired ideas, you can create a life that is a perfect fit for you, step-by-step.

If you don’t have a clue about what your dream life could look like yet, don’t worry. Your heart knows. It has been “talking” to you for a long time. It’s just being muffled by KCRP, buried under a lot of “shoulds” and fear.

This article can also help you figure out the life you truly want to live: How to Get Motivated and Be Happy Every Day When You Wake Up.

Stand still, get quiet, and listen. It’s constantly telling you what you need to do to realize your own rockstar potential. It may be just a whisper now, but the more you pay attention to it, the louder it will get, and the easier it will be to follow.

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Featured photo credit: Rahul Dey via unsplash.com

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