Your life matters

Life is harsh.

It hurts to say that.

But it’s true — life is not a picnic.

Maybe you’re stuck in a rut, unable to move on.

Maybe life has come down harshly on you, and you feel embarrassed and powerless. Maybe you’re too hard on yourself.

1. There is no perfect moment to share your life story. Holding yourself to unrealistic standards creates frustration. Waiting until you are perfect to share your ideas, skills and talent is pointless — no one will ever hear them because you’ll never get perfect. Whatever you have to share, just do it now.

2. You will never be 100% ready to grab opportunities when they arise. “We often miss opportunity because it’s dressed in overalls and looks like work.” — Thomas A. Edison

Accept opportunities as they appear because they’ll help you grow as you learn how to handle them.

3. We can’t control the past, and wasting time to worry about it is lost time. The past is gone, so do more now and worry less. Train yourself to manage the time you have now.

4. Our words have the power to hurt, shame and oppress. Cruel remarks wound others for life. Our arguments with others are pointless. Choose peace over being right by declining battle. Use your words to inspire and to liberate instead.

5. Failure quickly gets to our hearts, but success goes to our heads. Our character is revealed at our highs and lows. Be humble at the top. Be faithful in the valleys.

6. The best life lessons come from the hardest experiences. How you react to circumstances is more important than what happens. Your most difficult moments are good lessons you couldn’t have learned any other way

7. Investing in yourself is the most rewarding thing you can do.You have the power and responsibility to choose what you do with the time you have. Put your oxygen mask on first before helping the person sitting next to you.

8. Our assumptions about what happiness should be are what make us unhappy. Let go of your expectations about what would make you happy and treasure your life for what it is.

9. Our devices often get in the way of our social interaction. We all need to be human again. Meet people. Don’t hide behind your gadgets. Listen to others’ stories face to face.

10. Outer beauty blinds society. What if we all suddenly went blind? How would beauty be judged then? Let us focus on inner beauty, and always do our best to see beauty in everyone.

11. We judge ourselves by our ideas, yet judge others by their actions. Let our words and values agree with one another. Be a person who others want to meet and be around.

12. Sadly, we don’t get what we give. Don’t expect people to always give back. Not everyone has as giving a heart as you. Avoid disappointment by not expecting anything in return when you give.

13. No one owes you anything. Stop blaming others. Take your power back. Free yourself by stepping forward and controlling your life. Stop looking for people to lean on. Own your journey.

14. It’s hard to let go of the things holding us back from growth. Moving forward means coming to a realization that growth involves letting go and making certain things part of your history — not a part of your destiny.

15. We all will die. No one will live forever. Some lives end young. Loved ones leave us with broken hearts. Start living a purposeful life and try to mend broken relationships, because you never know when life will end

16. Your achievements and successes won’t matter on your deathbed. A question to ask yourself everyday is this: “If today were the last day of my life, would I still do what I am about to do today?” As Steve Jobs said in response to this, whenever the answer was “no” too many days in a row, he always changed to doing something else

17. To experience the benefits of something in life, we have to accept the cost. Rewards and risks go hand in hand. Fortune and misfortune go hand in hand. Ask yourself, “What am I willing to give up to achieve what I want?”

18. We want quick and easy fixes without wanting to put in effort. Learn to have perseverance and patience. Create smart goals that will get you to where you want to be. If it’s a dream you want to achieve, put in the effort.

19. You are responsible for the problems you encounter, regardless of who caused them. Instead of worrying about who caused them, think about how you can get yourself out of the situation.

20. Complaining doesn’t get you anywhere except holding you back from reaching your goals and poisoning those around you with your whining. Stop complaining and work on your accomplishments. “What you’re supposed to do when you don’t like a thing is change it. If you can’t change it, change the way you think about it. Don’t complain.” — Maya Angelou

21. The worst addiction in the world is comfort. Take the road less traveled — one which is sometimes filled with barriers, detours, bumps and undiscovered territory. On that road is where your character will be tested.

22. Emotions exist for a reason. They either make us feel secure or biased against something. “To move on, you must understand why you felt what you did and why you no longer need to feel it.” — Mitch Albom

23. The desire for revenge has more to do with venting your frustrations than with correcting behavior. Never take your revenge, beloved, but leave room for the wrath of God, for it is written, vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord. Romans 12:17–19

24. Justice is a human invention which is, in reality, unachievable, and many destroy lives in demanding it. “If you spend your time hoping someone will suffer the consequences for what they did to your heart, then you’re allowing them to hurt you a second time in your mind.” — Shannon L. Alder

25. What children learn isn’t taught on purpose by their parents. “It’s the children the world almost breaks who grow up to save it.” — Frank Warren

26 . Hating oneself starts with breaking one’s promises. Once done, it feels terrible. When it becomes a habit, you hate yourself more. “Broken vows are like broken mirrors. They leave those who held to them bleeding and staring at fractured images of themselves.” — Richard Paul Evans

2 7 . Sometimes we have to ditch toxic friends from our lives and surroundings. “Some folks you just don’t need. You’re better off without ’em. Your life is just a little better because they ain’t in it.” — William Gay

28. Life is not fair. Life will hand you lemons, and the sooner you make lemonade out of them, the better life is for you. However, “[w]e need to defend the interests of those whom we’ve never met and never will.” — Jeffrey D. Sachs

29. Good things usually don’t come easily. And if you think about it, great accomplishments take time, too. Follow the psychological principle of delaying instant gratification, which means you don’t expect rewards instantly.

30. Not everyone will support your dream. Haters, doubters and pessimists will sabotage every move you make. To overcome this, follow your gut and forget those who don’t support your dreams or who hold you back.

I wish I could tell you that living your dream life is a piece of cake and that you will always control your direction.

Not so, but go for it anyway.

Every day you have to find your courage, no matter how harsh life gets.

Acknowledging and accepting these difficult truths will start you on the right path.

Pilgrim, travel well. Your life is waiting for you.

Originally published at on January 9, 2017.

Originally published at