1. Be respectful of other people’s time. This goes for things as seemingly insignificant as trying your hardest to never be late, to things like not allowing people to invest their time in you if you’re not willing to give them your 100%, complete best.
2. Be reliable and trustworthy. If somebody is willing to open up to you and expose some type of vulnerability, chances are they’ll be thankful if you keep things to yourself. Relative to this, doing what you say you’ll do goes a long way in making other people’s lives easier, even if it’s just as small as keeping a promise.
3. You are not (and never will be) above another person for as long as you live. Several of my family members have proven to be extremely successful and still, my father lives to say that the janitor, the stock boy, or the purchasing agent are all just as important as the guy (or girl) who’s the business’s CEO and oversees them all.
4. Always let somebody know if you appreciate something they have done for you. I’ve learned, first from observing them, and then from my own experiences, that it never hurts to allow another person to know that you’ve recognized their kindness and generosity.
5. Be honest. Always. I think that our world has become so fucked up — for lack of better words — that we trust one another so little. And for me, this has been one of the most difficult lessons. It’s so hard to be flawlessly honest and real and still have people assume that you must be making this up or trying to trick them in one way or another.
6. Chances are, whatever it is, you really will survive.
7. Sometimes it really is important to keep things to yourself. This goes for minor internal meltdowns to being humble about your successes. Unless they’re a best friend who obviously must be aware of everything that goes on in your life, chances are the person probably doesn’t need to know.
8. Don’t be cheap, stingy, or overly frugal. The extra couple of dollars probably will not matter in the big picture, no matter what it’s for.
9. Lastly, as all of this blends together, I realize that my parents have taught me how to show compassion for other people and how to let them know that I care about them. It’s rare that one learns how to be highly perceptive, and I’m thankful that my parents were able to instill this in me.