Tuesday 1 April 2014

The rules I live by

During my past 34 years on this earth I have acquired some wisdom along the way. Or at least that's what I like to call it.
There are a few life lessons I have learned, advice I have been given, and wisdom I have read somewhere (most likely on Pinterest) that has formed a sort of guideline I live by. A code if you will.

Some of it has been gleamed from my wise husband, who has more life experience than I do.
Most of it is a combination of observing other people, reading stories, watching Biography on The Biography Channel, and reading motivational boards on Pinterest.
Solid sources if you ask me.  

I have been insecure, jealous, sad and lost many times in my life. I needed an army to help me combat these devils. My army is formed by these rules I have formed for myself - and I thought I would share them with you.

1. Don't take life and yourself too seriously.
Seriously, don't. You have to be able to laugh at yourself and at life's funny moments. Sometimes it's ridiculous. That's what makes it so enjoyable!

2. Be funny.
Humour is one of the greatest gifts on earth. Making others smile and laugh is priceless! It makes work, routine and everyday life special.

3. Don't count calories.
Trust me on that one. Don't spend your life restricting yourself. You will end up miserable, and ironically, not slimmer. Diets don't work. Listen to your body, make healthy choices, and eat the damn cake!

4. Don't listen to the opinion of others.
What a difficult lesson to learn that one was. It is good and important to ask for advice when you need it. But at the end of the day, make decisions based on what feels right to you. Nobody else is living your life but you. Listen to your instincts and your heart.

5. Don't hold grudges. 
They weigh you down. They make you unhappy. The person you hold that grudge against? They may not even know (or care) and go happily about their life. The only person who suffers is you. So drop it, and move on.

6. Don't have regrets. 
I don't believe in regrets. We all make mistakes, it's human nature. But each time we do, there is a lesson to be learnt. Even seemingly "wrong" turns in life can have positive outcomes. We just have to be willing to see it.

7. Be proud of your laugh lines, they tell a story of happiness and joy. 
Our youth- and smooth skin-obsessed culture is trying to tell us that lines and wrinkles are unattractive.
I say, to hell with that! Why should I be ashamed of my crow's feet? I have earned them. It took hours and hours of smiling and laughing to get them. They tell the story of a happy life. Wear them with pride.

8. Most problems solve themselves. 
That one is Richard's advice. I was sceptical at first, but have since learned that it is true! What a revelation! The next time you are worried about something, or wrestle with a problem, see what happens - most of the time it will sort itself out without any doing on your part. It's amazing. 

9. Find out what you love to do. Do it often.
Many people actually don't know what makes them happy. It's sad, isn't it? They get so caught up in life, work, family that they think they don't have time to ask themselves that question. And if you are busy enough it is easy to ignore it and just keep on going, trying to get through each day.
Stop that.
Look into your heart and soul, and figure out what makes you excited for life! What makes your heart beat faster! And once you know, do it as often as you can. I promise, it will change your life.

10. Be brave. Do things that scare you. If you adhere to rule #6, nothing bad can happen.
When have you felt proudest of yourself?
For me it is when I have done something that scares me. Public speaking. Saying yes to a new venture. Taking a chance. Moving to a new country.
If it doesn't work out? Well, then I tried and learned something. It is better to try and fail than never try in the first place, right?

11. Don't live in the past or future. Live in the present.
That one is a biggie! Don't wait for your life to start sometime in the future, live it now!
Also, don't wallow in the past. Whatever it may be - fond memories or regrets - don't do it. It is the past, you can't change it or re-live it. But you can make the best of today.

12. Make the best of every situation.
Life is full of little annoyances. But we have a choice: we can be annoyed by them, or we can search for the silver lining. Let's say you are stuck in traffic - instead of being frustrated and angry, turn up the radio and rock out. Or call a friend you haven't talked to in a while. Whatever it is, you always have a choice how to deal with a situation, it is in your power!

13. Don't be like the rest of them, darling!
Being different is good. Be quirky, don't care what others say (see #4), be the hero of your story.

14. Stay true to yourself.

You should always be able to look at yourself and be proud of who you are. Don't get caught in the trap of wanting to fit in: what's right for others may be wrong for you. 

15. The mind is everything. What you think, you become. (Buddha)
I truly believe that. It is a self-fulfilling prophecy: If you believe that something terrible is going to happen, it really will. But luckily, it also works the other way around: believe in your own success, and it will come true. Thoughts are very powerful: They dictate our words and actions, and our actions make us who we are. Choose wisely.

16. Be kind.
Always. Karma is powerful: What you do to others they will do to you.

17. If you are part of a team, refer to all of you as "we", not "I". 
Be a team player. You can't walk through life alone. Give credit where credit is due.

18. Admit if you made a mistake, and move on. Don't blame others.
"Yes, I did that. And I'm not afraid to admit it. Quite the opposite, I proudly lie on top of my work!"
We all make them. It is a sign of maturity to (wo)man up and admit it. Don't be that person who always tries to blame it on others. Just don't.  

19. Expect nothing and appreciate everything.
High expectations inevitably lead to disappointment. Trust me, I learned the hard way. I find that the best way is to see what happens, and go with the flow.

20. Choose happy. 

Do you have any "rules" you live by? I would love to hear!

Lots of love, Miriam

Linking up with Nicole
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  1. WOW Miriam these are great!!! Such a smart and insightful lady :) #3 Yes #4 Yes those are big ones on my list. I struggle with some of the other ones (19,15, and 12 particularly). Great post!

  2. wow, that's everything everyone should ever live by. i love them all :)

  3. Choose happy is one I am working on each and every day! Life is good!

  4. I love love LOVE these!!!!!!! All key to a good, HAPPY life! :)

  5. YES.
    16 - the most important. <3

  6. I think this is such a great post. I know these are such great rules to live by and this just gives me a little reminder to follow these myself! Such a good key to a happy life!


  7. I love, love, love this post! I just found your blog and this was a delightful first post to stumble upon. My rules are pretty similar to yours, and have developed more fully as I've gotten deeper into my 30s. I think the one that struck me the most was caring less about the opinions of others. Abiding by that rule has really helped me feel more confident and content. Can't wait to follow along (it can be hard to find other 30-something bloggers sometimes!) :).

  8. Very nice Miriam and very inspirational, love it :)

  9. such a nice list.
    I am sure anyone who follow these rules will live happily ever after (:


    1. They serve me well, even though I struggle with some of them from time to time.
      Thanks for stopping by Indigo!

  10. :) This list is excellent! I feel like I should print it out and review it daily.



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