1. Self-awareness doesn’t always translate to doing the right thing at all times. Improving one’s life requires hard work – and patience with the process.
2. Sometimes motivation comes right after gathering a little momentum from doing. In other words, you won’t always feel motivated to do something that’s important. However, working your way into feeling motivated is possible. Just do it.
3. Your temperament is never an excuse for being insufferable. You can do better. Better than you think.
4. Insecurities and doubts abound at any age. But you learn how to handle them better as you mature.
5. Parents are flawed human beings whose efforts at parenting might not be enough, but you can also choose to forgive them (they’re only human).
6. Practice doesn’t always make perfect, but it’ll possibly lead to the desired, good enough outcome if you persevere. And that’s enough.
7. Fear can wreak some serious havoc in your life if you let it. I learned this lesson the hard way.
8. Love is not finite.
9. Mistakes are one of life’s greatest teachers, so long as you don’t stay stuck making the same mistakes. Learning from other people’s mistakes is great (and convenient) too – you don’t always have to be the one making the mistakes.
10. Reading is one of the best ways to feed your soul, change your thinking, and improve your life.
11. Emotional and social intelligence are not basic, inherent traits. However, if you can learn to cultivate these traits, then your life, relationships, and even interaction with strangers will be better for it.
12. A scary, yet liberating fact is that every experience in life is transient. This too – good, bad, or ugly – shall pass. Trying to hold on to any of these experiences or thinking it’ll last forever is what creates suffering.
13. Life is messy – excruciatingly and beautifully so.
14. Happiness can be found in the little, everyday things, too.
15. The mind is like a double-edged sword. It’s always trying to keep you safe, but that can sometimes result in a paradoxical effect of having a less than fulfilling life. Learning to discern when to obey it and when to ignore it is key.
16. It is somewhat disrespectful to tell people how and what to feel. Learning to validate people’s emotions even if you don’t understand why they feel the way they do is a beautiful trait to develop.
17. Learning to forgive is sometimes hard but necessary for personal freedom and peace.
18. Restraint is classier.
19. Feelings are ephemeral. They are meant to be gauges, not guides. And so one can rarely bank on them.
20. You may not be the best at or famous for something you are passionate about, but you can have fun doing it, anyway.
21. “Comparison is the thief of joy.” No jokes.
22. While spending time with friends and family is good, learning to be alone and enjoying your own company is a necessary trait to develop.
23. With most things in life – simple and complex – balance is key. And learning to strike that balance is what keeps one sane.