Recently while perusing Facebook, I came across a friend’s post that really tugged at my heart strings. It was a snapshot of a letter that his mom had handwritten him years ago. It was a list of things that she felt like he needed to know for a successful life. I immediately knew that I had to create such a list for my girls. Listed below are 10 principles that they can carry throughout life. The great thing is that these are principles that we all can strive to live by.
(1) Ask God first.
If you ask Him first, you won’t have to seek Him as a last resort. Take every decision that you have to make to God in prayer. Doing so will help you alleviate acting based on how you feel or how things look.
(2) Keep a Journal.
There will be times when you need a release that only a good cathartic journal entry will offer. Furthermore, years from now you will appreciate reading through the pages of your old journals and seeing how much you’ve grown.
(3) Crying is not a sign of weakness.
Never apologize for the moments when you don’t know how to articulate your emotions with words. Those are liquid prayers & God hears you!
(4) Educate yourself!
As you grow older, I won’t tell you not to do something. If I tell you that then you’ll just be rebellious and go do it anyway. However, if I tell you to go to #1 (ask God), be careful and educate yourself about everything that you think you want to do, then I let you grow up into a responsible adult on your own. A part of that process is making good and bad decisions.
(5) It’s okay to make mistakes.
After you have prayed about it and educated yourself, you may still make the wrong decision because you didn’t understand the consequences or simply because you did what you wanted to do. Making mistakes is okay. Honestly, that’s the only way you’re going to learn certain things. Just don’t get stuck. Pick up the pieces and keep it moving. But remember, making the same mistake over and over again is doing what you want to do on purpose.
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(6) Always be nice to people.
Treat the janitor and the CEO with the same respect. My grandma always taught me that you get more bees with honey than you do with vinegar. So be sweet!
(7) Always look out for your siblings.
Stick together, no matter what! There will come a time when Mommy and Daddy leave this earth and you may only have each other to lean and depend on.
(8) Become an excellent listener.
God gave you two ears and one mouth for a reason. Almost everything you do in life is going to involve listening and following instructions. Learning, driving, working, keeping friends, etc. are all contingent upon your ability to listen. So learn to do it well.
(9) If you don’t like your situation, change it.
Wherever you are in life, if you feel that you should be somewhere else, then make it happen. If you don’t like your relationships, your money, your job or even your hair, then change it! It’s that simple. This doesn’t mean that the journey to changing will be easy though.
(10) The same rules that apply to you, apply to me.
For the rest of your life you can follow this model! Go through steps 1 through 10 and then repeat!
Which of these principles resonates with you the most? Which one was instilled in you by your parents which you plan to pass on?