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45 of my life learnings so far

As I turn 45, I wanted to think of 45 learnings I have and the idea of sharing them made me focus more than maybe I would have if I was just doing it on my own. There were some learnings that came to mind immediately and others that snuck through. So, I decided to do it over a few days, writing down anything that came to mind in different sessions and then to see which ones kept coming up and they would clearly make the top 45. These are in no particular order apart from maybe numbers 1 and 45. What would yours be?

  1. Be positive and recognise the good in people

2. Never stop learning – personally and professionally. Have a growth mindset to keep developing

3. Only compare yourself to what you want to achieve: I don’t do Facebook and perhaps thats why I don’t suffer from FOMO. I review my targets every birthday

4. Practise gratitude and pay it forward

5. Grief will get you when you least expect it so give in to it – it is not a weakness but a strength and you are simply honouring your connection and the love you had. Experience it, let it shake you to the core and cry all you need. Don’t let anyone tell you they ‘thought you were stronger than this’. You need to grieve, so grieve. Time is a great healer.

6. Open your heart up to joy and love

7. ‘When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time’ Maya Angelou If you sit back, watch and listen you will learn all you need to know about someone. People give away who they are in what they say so listen to their words, watch how they treat others as well as you and who they are when they don’t think you’re listening. Actions speak louder than words

8. Hurt people hurt people so when they lash out or insult it says more about them than it ever will about you

9. Meditate, journal or do whatever brings you to a relaxed state where you can hear and understand yourself better. sit quietly so you can listen to your body, and and soul

10. Sleep on it: it will always be better tomorrow and there is always a way forward even if you have to take a couple of steps back first

silhouette of man at daytime

Photo by Prasanth Inturi on

11. Travel, travel, travel – out of your own culture, religion, country and beliefs

12. Only share your story with those who want to hear it. Don’t give time to those who tell you who you are but you only need to share what you want to share. 

13. Some people will only ever see how something effects them and will only want what is best for them 

14. Fear breeds intolerance/ hate so have a variety of friends from different backgrounds so that you can learn about different aspects. If you don’t understand something then ask about it, don’t just make fun of it

15. If you wouldn’t let the person physically into your home, don’t take them home in your head – let them go or leave them in work or wherever they belong

16. Experience fully/ deeply – love, life, travel, others, yourself

17. Test people if you need to – make a mistake and see how they react or say something controversial and watch their response. It will tell you much more than they will ever say verbally.  

18. What you think of yourself is the only opinion you need to worry about

19. The struggles in life will provide many more learning opportunities than the easy times ever will. Sometimes parts of your life have to fall apart to get you to the next stage/ opportunity of your life

20. Set boundaries, keep them, let others know them and enforce them