One of the most critical things I learned as a child was this: learning was not an option – it was a requirement. We were expected and encouraged to be curious, to wonder, to ask questions. Things like reading, taking classes, going to school, pursuing undergraduate degrees were non-negotiables.
This emphasis on learning yielded a lot of important life lessons, as well; lessons like learning to pursue subjects I was passionate about, appreciating when to push myself and when to be still; developing skills to recharge, trust my gut and stick with it.
Learning, and the life lessons that followed, engrained in me certain behaviors. These behaviors continue to serve as the foundation for my success – most especially in this new year.
With that said, these behaviors have become my secret sauce in all areas of life. They’re not complicated; they just require consistency, want to, and of course good ole sticktoitness – and no excuses.
Never stop learning
Educate yourself and educate yourself some more. Education goes far beyond the walls of a four-year institution or a higher-level degree. Those are wonderful and if they work to your benefit, go for it. Just know that the Internet offers a plethora of resources for learning. Books and podcasts make great educational tools, too.
I keep a business book and a personal growth in my path all the time. Additionally, I have spent countless hours reading and watching videos and enrolling in online training about how to write better, how to understand the beast that is social media, how to make great videos and so on. The world offers massive resources literally at our fingertips. Use these resources and challenge yourself to be a continual student of life.
Find a passion that’s true to you
It does not have to be conventional, but it does have to be true to you. (And only you know what this is.) And it can change and grow with you, too. A passion that’s true to your 22-year-old self might look and feel totally different that age 32, and so on. Here I am at 51 years old just finally waking up to how much I love writing and teaching.
So tune in to what excites you and motivates you. That won’t always be easy either. You might have to work two jobs – your day job to pay your bills and then leverage your free time as I have done for over four years now to make my dream of book and movie come to life. Don’t be afraid to do the work and follow your passions. It’s absolutely the most joyful path you will ever take. It’s not easy or for the faint of heart, but in the end, I can assure you, it is so worth the sweat, blood and tears. Go for it.
Trust your gut
Trusting and honoring your gut is everything. Literally. Because your gut is your truest self. Tune in, pay attention, listen and follow that teeny-tiny voice, because it knows. Mine has never failed me.
Regroup and recharge
We live in a fast-paced, constantly spinning world. We seem to albeit incorrectly believe that running until we are exhausted is admirable. It is not.
Take care of yourself. Be good to your body and mind; find the spaces and places and people with whom you recharge; be quiet and be still. For me, it’s spaces in my home, such as my back porch or my favorite orange chair. Sometimes it’s a weekend or a day trip to hike in the mountains alone or sometimes with friends or time on my yoga mat. Sometimes, it’s a spontaneous beach weekend or maybe just cranking my favorite tunes and dancing like a crazy gal alone in my kitchen or with my daughters. Whatever it is that allows you to be still, be quiet and recharge, make sure you make time to do so.
Never ever quit
At 51 years old, I’ve got this. I’ve put things aside temporarily, but I have always gotten back to them. Believe in yourself. I promise you, you are so much more than enough, you’ve got this – but never, ever quit.
That’s my not so sexy truth.
Happy 2019; wishing you the very best in this new year ahead.
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