I have learnt many valuable things. The lessons bleed into each other, and are multi-levelled. You know, I think I understood more when I was younger. I think kids naturally "get it." We then get dulled by the world, our perceptions tarnished. Breakthroughs happen after breakdowns, big and small, and we are washed clean. Rainbows appear as does the knowledge that was always ours. Here are some valuable things I have learnt, re-learnt or am still learning.
1.You are going to be okay.
I wish I could travel back in time and reassure the girl (who was always afraid), that the life she dreams of will be hers one day. I wish I hadn’t spent so much time worrying. Now I say to myself, in three months (or three years), will this still be problematic? Everything comes to a conclusion.
2. Your perceptions are right.
I listen to my instincts when meeting people now, as in hindsight its always been proven correct. If I want to teach my child to follow her gut, then I have got to do likewise!
3. Everybody needs quietude.
We cant be all things to all people. I have tried! We need a quiet moment to ourselves regularly, just to check in.
4. I need to approve of myself, and there needs to be self-love, rather than self-loathing.
Intent is everything. I can exercise to flog my body, or to release endorphins to make myself feel great. I can raise a toast in celebration at a friend’s occasion, or drink to obliterate myself.
5. Regret nothing, as time is never wasted.
A love affair gone sour? It was sweet for a while, and provided nourishment for a time. Now it’s gone, its time to release and go onto another adventure. I have had the privilege of being with many folks, young and old, whilst they were letting go of this life. Sometimes I wonder if its only at the end that we can fully grasp the bigger picture of our lives and what it all meant. The people and places suddenly make sense. Hindsight can be a wonderful thing.
6. If I feel lousy, I must do something for someone else.
Whether that be a simple text message, sending a card, making a meal…
7. When depressed, I have to do the opposite of what I am feeling compelled to do.
If I feel like having a glass of wine, I have to have water. If I feel like eating nothing but crap, I will make soup. If I feel like climbing into bed, I will go for a walk. It speaks to the rebel within to defy the black dog’s compulsions.
8. Listen to other people, only when what they are saying resonates with you.
If I had listened to other people and taken their simplistic advice throughout the years, Raphie would have been kaput a long time ago! Nothing wrong with listening to yourself first and foremost!
9. Stop and rest.
You cant notice majesty when rushing around. You were made to be in this world, not do in this world. When I make time to stop and have a cuppa with a friend, walk or play with my child, my day is so much more pleasant and my head contains more clarity.
10. Ask yourself what it is that you want to happen.
Sometimes, I feel shocked when I enquire this of myself. Without unrefined goals and purpose, we can float along in a sea of inertia, overflowing with everyone’s input but our own.
11. Life can be bloody hard and really silly at times.
Find people who make you laugh, and whom you adore. At the end of it all, love is what’s real.
12. It’s okay to be angry.
Use it as a mighty force for change. Righteous indignation is a great energy to unfurl when we witness injustice. There are things happening here on earth that just aren’t right. We are allowed to be peeved. I was pissed off every day during my stint in rehab to learn how to walk, and it helped!
13. Be kind to yourself.
I think we are both stronger and more fragile than we give ourselves credit for. No more negative self-talk!