Everyone has a code or rules they live by, even if they aren’t written on a piece of paper.
When I decided to change my life, I wanted a set of guidelines to remind me of my long-term goals – things that would ground me if I started to drift, ideas I strive to meet, the actions needed to be the kind of person I want. I fall short sometimes, but this list helps me live the life I want.
The reflection you see in the mirror isn’t always going to be as physically attractive as you’d like. That’s okay. Be beautiful anyway.
Build character, humor, love, kindness, compassion, knowledge, experience, and patience into every cell of who you are. Not everyone will look past your physical appearance, but for those who make the effort, reward them…and be one of them.
Learn Something of Value Daily
- Something about a friend or loved one that makes you appreciate them more.
- A new word.
- Something that makes you better at your job.
- Something about a place you’ve never experienced before.
Switch it up as much as you want, but keep learning useful information.
Get Up Again
Life is going to knock you down, break your heart, leave you broken, and make you question things you once thought unquestionable.
Get up again. Love again. Heal or deal. Realize that nothing is unchangeable.
You’re capable of more than you realize. Make the best of whatever comes your way by helping yourself, and help other people as much as you can.
Life is going to give you opportunities, surround you with people who will help you and love you, give you gifts, give you natural skills, and reveal itself as more intricate and beautiful than you once thought possible.
Be grateful. Take the opportunities. Accept the help and love. Thank the people who teach you, love you, make you laugh, make you better, and help make you who you are. Look for and see the beauty that surrounds you.
Make the best of whatever comes your way by helping yourself, and help other people as much as you can.
If you’re going to judge, and you should, do it based on fact or statistics. Leave fear and ignorance out of it.
If you’re in a dark ally and a stranger pulls out a switchblade, statistics are on the side of them intending to harm you. In that case, being judgmental will most likely save your life.
If someone has a different religion, skin color, sexual preference, country, favorite team, hair color, diet, idea, etc., than you, statistics are on the side of them not wanting to harm you. Judging those people as dangerous is fear-based.
If you aren’t comfortable enough with your own religion, skin color, sexual preference, etc., etc. to remain unthreatened by someone making a different choice or being different, perhaps it isn’t the other person you need to question.
When It Comes To Love and Loving
Remember the truth of the following Alan Cohen quote and let it guide your behavior when others make mistakes or forget who they are:
“Those who love you are not fooled by mistakes you have made or dark images you hold about yourself. They remember your beauty when you feel ugly; your wholeness when you are broken; your innocence when you feel guilty, and your purpose when you are confused.”
Make Life Better
When everything seems to go wrong, when you don’t feel good, and when you’re tempted to think/hope that maybe tomorrow will be better, find a way to make life better right now.
Even in your darkest, most painful moment, there is something or someone that will make you smile. If you can’t find a way to make your own life better, there’s definitely someone else who a kind comment or light-hearted joke from you would help. It’s not easy, but focus on making life better right now.
Wonderful and terrible experiences fill your life. Share them with others when appropriate.
Maybe it will help them find a way through a tough time or realize that there is more good in their life than they’re seeing.
If it does nothing more than let a single person know they can survive, it is worth the vulnerability.
Your Best Is Enough
It doesn’t matter what you used to be able to do or what you will eventually be able to do.
Stick with what you can do, right now, today, and do it.
Do any of you have a set of guidelines you strive to live by?