Wednesday, August 12, 2009
27 Things I Learned Before I Turned 27 Today
I was inspired to make my own list after I recently read the blog post of a friend about the 29 lessons he learned before his 29th birthday. This list is not only a review on the things I have learned – and still learning – but a reminder during the times I forget.
1) Life is beautiful if you allow it to be.
2) Laughter may not always be the best medicine, but it certainly is one of the best.
3) Your mother was right when she said you have to sleep early and long to grow tall.
4) Family and friends are arguably the best gifts – and teachers (witting or unwitting) – the world can give you. =)
5) Vegetables are really good for you.
6) Chocolate can be good for a woman’s heart – especially if it’s dark chocolate. =)
7) Money is not the root of evil. The love of money – and the fear of losing or not having enough money – is.
8) Planning and preparing for the future is good, but don’t exchange the present moment for it.
9) Pleasure and excitement are not synonymous to joy. When choosing between what gives you pleasure and excitement and what gives you joy, choose the latter. Of course, having all would be nice. =)
10) Sometimes you have to choose between being right and being happy. The second choice is always more fun and easy on the mind. =)
11) In learning, give more importance to the principle over the method. Methods may change or become outdated, but principles are timeless.
12) The most dangerous obstacles to your dreams are not other people or circumstances but your own excuses or stories you believe as absolute truth.
13) Sometimes who you are is more important than what you do. Your very presence can touch people more than your actions.
14) Clarity equals power. The clearer you are, the more powerful your words and actions.
15) You can never change another person, well-meaning you may be. You can try anything from the sweetest suggestion to emotional blackmail or outright threat, all to no avail. The best you can do is show the possibilities to that person and then give him/her space and support. Trust in that person’s process.
16) The only person you can really save is yourself. But it’s funny and amazing that when you do, some people realize that they can save themselves too. (I still need to remind myself about this whenever my Messianic complex kicks in ^_^).
17) Suffering is an option. So is happiness.
18) Nothing or no one can truly hurt you unless you allow it. (A lesson I’m still having difficulty with many times).
19) When you stop worrying and controlling and just trust and let go, amazing things happen.
20) The line between opposites can be paper-thin. Be mindful whether you are loving or manipulating, being trusting or ignorant, acting from intuition or delusion.
21) Don’t be so hard on yourself when you find yourself backsliding on something you decided to change. Just keep trying. Sometimes it is more difficult to un-learn than to learn.
22) Actually, sometimes the lessons you need to learn – or un-learn – are a bit “advanced” for your present state of mind that it’s natural you don’t get them immediately. If you’re frustrated, you are like an elementary student frustrated he/she is not in college yet. ^_^ (Something I need to remind myself over and over again. Hehehe.)
23) All paths eventually lead to God / enlightenment / the divine / whatever you feel like calling it. Some paths may take longer, some may appear to lead to “destruction” at first, but they all lead to one destination.
24) Corollary to the above, to insist that your path is the only right or valid path can actually harm your own journey.
25) There can be many voices trying to tell you what to do and messages that look equally true. To know the truth, go into that deep, quiet part of you and listen.
26) Related to the above – ALL principles and wisdom are actually true, even when some appear to be conflicting. The trick is to know which wisdom to apply in a particular situation.
27) You are always being guided by a higher power. Always.
To the people and situations who taught me these sometimes painful and difficult lessons, I am forever grateful. =)