This post offers 25 nuggets of motherly wisdom I want to pass along to my teen.
My son just turned 18. What’s particularly hard to swallow about this birthday is that he’s now considered an adult. What? How could that be?
Just the other day orange hot wheel track was draped all over my living room furniture as he pushed his cars along making swoosh noises and crashing cars into one another.
Just the other day I was a young mom walking around with stains on my shirt from a drippy sippy cup, circles under eyes from lack of sleep, (they’re still there, by the way), and a messy bun because why bother fixing your hair when you’re up at the crack of dawn and you haven’t showered in two days.
And here we are…
He’s on the cusp of college ready to jump into life with both feet… without me.
No more safety net. No more “me” to fix him dinner, help him solve his problems or give him an emotional boost (and a big hug) when life gets the best of him. Of course, I know we’ll still talk on the phone. But, every mom who’s sent a child off to college knows, it’s not the same.
Before he ventures off into the world on his own equipped with nothing more than a heap of hope, a dash of confidence and eager expectations of the crazy college life, I want to pass along a few nuggets of maternal advice to pave the way.
I mean, I know I can’t make it easy. I can’t catch him when he falls. I can’t live his life or dream his dream or choose his destiny. He needs to figure out a few things on his own. He needs to find out (even if it’s the hard way) that some lessons are learned quickly, while others take time – quite possibly a lifetime.
This journey – with all its lessons, both wonderful and agonizing, is his to travel on his own.
So, my son, here are 25 important life lessons I hope you’ll learn. Tuck these words of wisdom in your pocket and carry them with you as you make this journey through life. And, remember, every lesson you learn in life will unveil another layer of who you are and who you’re meant to be.
Here are 25 nuggets of motherly wisdom I want to pass along to my teen:
Your Struggles Will Make You Stronger
Regardless of the hurdles you face in this life (and you will), always remember to look in the mirror and be proud of how far you’ve come. Soon enough you will find that your struggles are the building blocks of your character.
Complaining is a Waste of Time
Nothing will steal your time, energy or outlook in life more than complaining. Fix it, change it or move on – don’t waste time complaining about it.
Working Hard and Laughter are Not Mutually Exclusive
You can work hard and still have fun. Don’t get so caught up in achieving that you forget to ease up and enjoy life.
Friendship is the Secret to a Lasting Romantic Relationship
Romantic relationships are, at their very core, wonderful friendships. Before you dive into a romantic relationship become friends first – it will serve as a buffer when your relationship hits bumps in the road.
Take Care of YOU
Nothing in life will ever matter if you don’t have your health. Start young, eat healthily, breathe fresh air and stay strong – you’ll thank yourself when you’re 60.
You Don’t Have to Figure It All Out Now
It’s okay not to have all the answers now, just keep moving forward. Tiptoe if you must, sometimes the smallest step can be the biggest step of your life.
Find Your Inner Hero
Learn to embrace and love yourself – your idiosyncrasies, your differences and even the little things you feel are faults. Find your inner “hero,” grab hold with a vice grip and never let go.
Your Emotions Take Practice
You can practice love, compassion, patience, and understanding just as easily as you can anger, frustration and intolerance. Practice who and what you aim to be.
You Will Never Please Everyone
You can lie down for some people and they will still complain you’re not flat enough. Your heart will tell you who you need to please. The rest really don’t matter.
Stay In Your Own Lane
Criticizing, judging and harshness won’t get you very far in life. Focus on you, your life and what’s best for you. Don’t worry about what everyone else is doing.
Kindness is the Answer
In a world filled with injustice, negativity, and intolerance, kindness is always the answer.
You Won’t Be Everyone’s Cup of Tea and That’s Okay
Not everyone is going to like you, want you, include you or choose you. That’s okay. Don’t try to be liked. Focus, instead, on liking yourself. That’s the real prize.
Your Past Mistakes Won’t Define You Unless You Let Them
Mistakes are part of life. We all make them. Don’t let your mistakes define you or hold you back. Let them guide you.
Forge Your Own Path, Even if You’re Alone
If you look around on your journey and find yourself alone, don’t be afraid. Ask yourself if this feels right for you. If it does, go for it. It takes a leader to forge a new path.
In Life, You Can Choose Bitter or Better
Life is filled with its share of ups and downs, triumphs and heartaches. You can either use those experiences to make you better or bitter. Choose better.
The Ability to Learn is a Gift
You’ve been given the most beautiful gift – the ability to learn. Never take it for granted. Strive to learn something new every single day of your life, no matter how small.
Think of Failures as Feedback in Disguise
Redefine the meaning of failure. There is no such thing as failure, only lessons, opportunities to try again, only a detour to success, only feedback in disguise.
Adventures Keep Life in Perspective
When life gets complicated and you need a break, go where you feel most alive. Seek adventure, breath fresh air, laugh and embrace this magical world. Remember though, sometimes life’s best adventures can be found right in your own backyard.
Who You Become Will Be a Reflection of What You Practice
Start every new day with a vision of who you want to be. Grab hold of that vision and fight to become the person YOU will be proud of.
If It’s Too Easy, It’s Probably Not Worth It
It’s not meant to be easy. It’s the “hard” that makes it so great. Don’t take the path of least resistance, it rarely pays off.
You Are What You Allow
You will teach others how to treat you by what you allow. Stand tall, be strong and never grant anyone permission to treat you poorly.
Be Grateful for Every New Sunrise
Wake up to the dawn of a new day with gratefulness in your heart. No matter how complicated life gets, there is always something to be grateful for.
You Will Always Gain More By Giving
Always give more than you receive and you will receive far more than you ever imagined – from life, from humanity, from God.
Some of God’s Greatest Gifts are Unanswered Prayers
When what you prayed for doesn’t come to fruition, always remember that God knows what is best for you. God’s “no” is never a rejection; it’s a redirection.
You are Capable
When you’re weary, confused or lack the confidence to take the next step always remember you are loved, you are strong, and you are capable of far more than you realize. Remember, doubt is never an excuse for deferring your dreams.