30 LIFE LESSONS I’ve gained from living this crazy and unconventional life….

I have few regrets in life. But, I do have one that haunts me to this day.  I was invited to speak to Mt. Edgecumbe high school (MEHS) students, the high school I graduated from. I didn’t prepare for this.  I completely failed the kids and I regret it.  Oftentimes I think about that day, I wish I could have had a ‘do-over’ but more than anything, I am sorry I disappointed the students and Ms. Maysato, the wonderful woman who invited me to MEHS. And so, as I thought about if I ever had a second chance to speak to the students again, I would give them my life lessons and for-the-love-of-all-that-is-holy do NOT make my mistakes. Or do make them, fail, fail gloriously, but above all else, LEARN from your mistakes.  

Anyways, I have kept a running list of my learning lessons and I’m sharing it with you because we can all relate to them in one way or another.

My 30 Life Lessons:

  1. Adulting is paperwork.  Don’t put it off or ignore it.

  2. Don’t be an idiot online.  That shit lives and has the tendency to come back and bite you.
  3. Your 20s are lonely and it will go fast.  Be brave, remember who you are and where you come from, and always encourage others.
  4. Power back up everything always.  Always back up and charge the iPhone, and laptop, all to iCloud/external hard drive.  Charge all your devices. I do this at night before bed, so all is charged for the next day.  It’s an efficient habit that leaves no surprises. 
  5. Gain a skill that you like and that you can always fall back on.  I didn’t figure this out until later in life, the earlier you find your skill, it will always be there for you.
  6. DO THE WORK! You will only get anywhere in life by knowing what it took to get there.  Do the work and do it consistently.
  7. You are never too old to start.  I can attest to this.  I’m almost 50 and I’ve started and restarted.  Its never too late.
  8. Scared?  Do it anyway.  You don’t really know what you are capable of until you try and fear…just do it scared.

  9. If you don’t know: Ask.  Google it.  Find the answer!

  10. Be flexible.  It will give you more time to grow.

  11. Follow your curiosity, not your passions.  That can hold you back.
  12. Failure.  Did you fail?  Good, learn from it, and move on. 

  13. Trust your gut.  If it sounds too go then it probably is. Listen to your instincts.
  14. You will know someone that will make success seem easy, don’t compare. Comparison is a killjoy.

  15. You will not be liked by everyone and you have to be ok with it.
  16. Friends will come and go, but the ones you nurture and value will stay with you for a lifetime. 

  17. The only constant is changing technology.  I’m an Apple products gal, stick with what works for you.
  18. Get it in writing and/or write it down (for goodness’ sake!) because 9 times out of 10 you won’t remember it later.

  19. Don’t burn mini bridges. No one likes jerks. Just be kind.
  20. Don’t spend all your time with idiots and wonder why you make terrible choices. The people you spend time with matter.

  21. Spend time with loved ones.   It’s fleeting and sometimes, you don’t have time.
  22. Time doesn’t heal us, but healing takes time. Just take the time you need, because it will make all the difference.
  23. Develop and stick to habits that support your physical, mental, and emotional health. Be well for the long-term 

  24. Keep on learning.

    1. Learn how to take notes.  Always take notes.  It helps with memory and dates.

    2. Learn how to negotiate.  The stock market does it, job applicants do it, and learn it to stop selling yourself short.

    3. Learn the language. It will open up your world apparently.
    4. Learn about money. Your money matters- learn how to make it, save it, and grow it.

  25. Pay as little as possible for a college degree. No one cares where you got your degree from. Student loans are the devil and you don’t want to be paying for them for the rest of your life.  

  26. Pay your bills.  It’s emotional, consistent, and about discipline. Get and follow a budget so you can manage your money.

  27. Most of the work is paying attention in meetings. Show up on time, take notes, and be present. Don’t be a meeting extender.

  28. Have an exit strategy. Always have an exit strategy for a bad date, moving home, or how long to stay at a job.  Have a deadline and don’t be complacent. 

  29. Listen to hear, not respond (but still take notes;)

  30. Be a planner.  The planner is organized and puts the dates in the calendar and is flexible. If you can’t be a planner then marry one. Ask my music man, we swear by the calendar.  

No matter what path you take, there will always be a lesson to learn. Even the best failures are opportunities to learn. Learn from it, write it down, and pass it on. Life’s an audition. Have flexibility, super-serve people, and audition for the next thing.


What are your learning lessons?

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