This post is mostly for me...a chance for me to document what I have learned in the past year. It has been the most challenging year of my life but when I look back I have learned more about myself and life in general then ever before. I would have to say in some respects it has been the most rewarding year of my life because Jess and I took a big leap of faith, struggled to make it, and now finally see a light at the end of the tunnel. I am a big believer that risk is required to achieve your dreams...we took big risks and we are stronger for it. We were forced to be resourceful, creative, and think outside the box. We had been through this type of situation when we first graduated college and moved to Colorado. After CO we moved back to CA and for years never had to worry about money, cars, insurance, etc. We left it all (well, Jess supported me as I chased my dreams and left corporate America)to go back to being financially broke but rich is passion, happiness and love. It has been hard but I have never regretted our decisions and I have never looked back..."Do not look back and ask why, look forward and ask, why not?"
Here is a list of what I have learned...
1. Chase your dreams with all of your heart and never look back
2. Shoot for the moon even when others think your crazy and your way out of your league (always have a lofty goal that seems a bit crazy...you never know)
3. Be true to yourself (even in the face of criticism)
4. Live your life without regret (never look back and wonder "what if?")
5. Always find the positive in situations (b/c there is always something positive)
6. Live in the moment
7. Stay humble
8. Be patient
9. Embrace your health b/c you never know when it can be taken away
10. No amount of money can bring about happiness...happiness is a state of mind
11. Sometimes you have to get knocked down to realize what really matters in life
12. If you wait to do everything until you're sure it's right, you'll probably never do much of anything
13. Don't pass judgement on people before you understand their situation and where they are coming from
14. There have been many days when I wake up in fear that I won't succeed but I have learned to turn that fear into motivation and to chase my dreams harder
15. Look well beyond what is practical and always think outside of the box
16. Never settle b/c when you do you stop dreaming and if you stop dreaming you might as well be dead
17. You only have one shot at this life so make it count
18. I would rather die poor and happy then rich and full of regret that I didn't follow my heart and true passions in life
19. Life is never easy but if you fight and you believe in yourself you will land on your feet
20. Treat EVERYONE with respect (until they do something to lose that respect)
21. Inspire others anyway you can
22. Give without expecting anything in return
23. Put a smile on your face and laugh at yourself as often as possible
24. ALWAYS find time for family and friends
25. Balance in life is the key to success and happiness
26. Don't fall victim to other peoples negativity
27. Be spontaneous...it keeps you young and laughing
28. Actions speak louder then words
29. Calm down and let things roll off your back
30. Be honest and genuine
31. A lot of people want to talk to you for the wrong reasons, very few for the right reasons. The very few are your true friends.
32. Dogs always make you happier!
33. Step back, take a deep breath and think about everything before you act/respond
34. Sometimes you just need to scream aloud or cry...do it b/c you will feel much better
35. Everyone has something to teach you whether it be positive or negative
These are all lessons I would like to share with my children, nieces, nephews someday but,on one hand, these are all lessons we probably have to learn on our own....life is a journey and all these ups and Downs in life that trigger these emotional responses carry more weight when your forced to do some soul searching and figure it all out on your own. I am sure when I was a kid (or even 30 years old for that matter) there have been times when my parents kept their mouths shut and just let me make my decisions, knowing full-well that I would fall on my face and not succeed. I wouldn't call this a bad thing b/c it forced me to be resilient, learn from my mistakes, and move on with life.
Here's to a successful 2010...dreams never die!