Age = wisdom. Right?
Maybe it’s because in just over 2 weeks I’ll be reaching a certain “milestone” age, or maybe it’s because I’ve been forced to do a lot of introspection about life, careers, people, love, etc. as of late. Whatever the reason, I’m feeling very old & wise at the moment.
So, I thought, what better way to dispense these completely unsolicited pieces of advice!
Kim’s 10 Selected Sagacious Snippets*
*Heed at your own risk—I assume ZERO responsibility for your life mistakes.
- Career-wise, if you’re not passionate about it, don’t do it.
For some people, the only passion they have is making money, no matter how it’s made. If that’s you, bravo! As long as you’re doing something that makes you money, you’re set. For others (like myself), I have to actually enjoy what I do every day. That includes the work I’m doing and the people I’m working with. I’ve been in my field for almost 14 years now, and if there’s one thing I’ve learned during that time, this would be the #1 lesson.The awesome thing about life is you can discover brand new passions at any stage. Rediscovering my love for design & creative media in several new ways, even 14 years into my career, is one of the greatest things that’s happened to me so far in 2015.
Truly, there aren’t enough words for me to express how important travel is in the development of a globally-minded, well-rounded individual. When I speak to people who not only haven’t gone more than 100-200 miles from where they were born, but have no desire to do so, my heart aches for them, and their children. If your entire world view is based on the people you grew up with, like if that’s really your whole world? Trust me. “You know nothing, Jon Snow.”
- It’s true what they say about insanity.
You’ve heard this before: Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. This can apply to almost anything—career, friendships, romance, health/wellness… it goes on and on. The point is, if you want something different to happen in your life, you have to DO something different. No more complaining that things aren’t the way you want them to be, and sitting there waiting for magic to happen. That’s crazy talk! So get up. Make a move. NOW!
- Reading really is fundamental.
I don’t care if it’s a magazine in the waiting room, or a nail/hair salon, or the back of a box of cereal, but please read things. Many things. Because we’re adults, and we should all know by now that a strong command of your native tongue is paramount. How are there so many “educated” people in our English-speaking country who can’t pronounce English words, spell them, or even properly punctuate a sentence?
This is a big lesson for me. Being “emotionally constipated” has been a weakness of mine for years. What I didn’t realize for the longest time, was that bottling things up inside was doing NOTHING for me except causing stress, illness, and sleepless nights. I’m not saying I’m fully reformed, because I still sometimes find myself remaining silent when I should speak up about my feelings. But even if the transition to a fully expressive Kim has been a sometimes awkward and ugly one, I’m increasingly more proud of the Kim I see in the mirror each day.
- More specifically, love more.
Love is something I used to pretend didn’t exist. When I didn’t have my “perfect” kind of love in my life, I found it easier to deny its existence than to face up to the fact that many people had the kind of love I wanted, and I didn’t. Then, last year, I found myself being inexplicably drawn to love. Even in small things like clothing, accessories, and home décor, if it said “Love” on it, I’d buy it. It was as if my acknowledgement of love somehow made my heart more receptive to the fact that it’s always here, all around me, everywhere I look. And when I recognized that, I learned there is more love available to me than I know what to do with.
- Animals = joy.
My dog Barney has opened up a place in my heart that I didn’t know I had. I’m almost 100% sure this is the same place that having a child would be a part of, but of course, that would be a larger, deeper, more permanent attachment. But the bond I have with my dog is nothing to “sniff” at (ba-dum-bum). Barney and I are besties. He’s my (sometimes) silent companion, my cuddle buddy, my playmate, and I’m convinced he knows my spirit better than a lot of people do.
Even if you don’t get it, you have to marvel at the awesomeness, and the power, of art. Appreciate what it means today, what it has meant in the past, and the incredible influence these artists and their creations have had, and continue to have in the ever-changing world we live in. Most people don’t even know how much today’s popular art/music/film/television professionals have borrowed from classical art masterpieces. It’s so ubiquitous, we’re so used to seeing it, we don’t even notice it when it’s right in front of us. I challenge you to research one piece of famous art you’ve heard of—learn about the reason behind its creation, the hidden symbols, the message the artist was trying to convey—you’ll undoubtedly see it in a new light.
- Don’t give power to foolishness.
Eyebrows on fleek. Beyonce always on beat. Kermit sipping tea. Calling your significant other “bae” (which makes my skin crawl, btw). The list of foolish memes, sayings, and phrases goes on and on… and YES I’m fully guilty of allowing myself to be sucked into the vortex every now and then. But I always, ALWAYS come back to myself. I don’t immediately start using the hot new slang just because everyone else is saying it. I don’t constantly share the countless idiotic video clips of foolishness on Instagram or FB that seem to spread like wildfire. When you perpetuate the mess, you give it power. Remember that even jokes come from a place of truth, and at some point, instead of spreading it, you need to rise above. At least, TRY to! 😉
- Recognize your place in this universe.
One small action can set off a series of events we can’t imagine, most of which we’ll never know anything about. If you stop and consider that, for even a second, your head might get all spinny and weird, like mine does. We all come from different socioeconomic backgrounds, have different beliefs, physical characteristics, and styles of dress. But you know what? We’re all here on the same planet, breathing the same air, under the same sun and moon and stars. Embrace that. Allow yourself to reflect on that, as often as you can. You might be surprised what you discover.
Life is an unforgettable and awesome journey. Make it an adventure!