Wednesday, March 10, 2010

10 Truths You Wish You’d Known Sooner

No excuses! I promised to myself to make no excuses for the entire week without a post on my blog. I could give you a nice, long list but it wouldn't change a thing. So I'll just continue...
This week I'm preparing for two exams in my series of eight  seven, I have one this Saturday and the other next Monday. I'll be glad when it's over. Even if I'm really curious and I love to learn new things, learning for an exam is different. But there is also another sort of learning: learning trough life about life and for life. Even if I'm really good in learning, I'm a truly lousy learner in real life. It took me ages to learn certain things about life and even more about people. You can call me naive but I love people and I tend to see the best in everyone. Believe me, I would like to change but all I'm capable off is to be more cautious. 
Recently I stumbled upon a wonderful article "10 Truths I Wish I’d Known Sooner" written by Amy Bloom in my favorite woman magazine Real Simple. It's so worth reading it! 
Picture from Sunny on Flickr
1. Events reveal people’s characters; they don’t determine them.
Not everyone with divorced parents has terrible relationships. If two people are hit by a bus and crippled for life, one will become a bitter shut-in; the other, the kind of warm, outgoing person (cheerful despite everything) whom everyone loves to be with. It’s not about the bus, and a dreadful childhood is no excuse. You have the chance to be the person you wish to be, until you die.

2. Lying, by omission or commission, is a bad idea.
I cannot shake my dependency on the white lie, because I was brought up to be nice. And I’ve never figured out the nice way to say, “I’d rather stick a fork in my eye than come to your house for dinner.” But the meaningful lie, the kind that involves being untruthful or deceitful about important stuff to those you love, is like poison. Telling the truth hurts, but it doesn’t kill. Lying kills love.

3. Sex always give you an answer, although not necessarily the one you want.
It’s possible to have very good sex, a few times, with a person who shouldn’t be in your life at all. Have fun, and hide your wallet and your BlackBerry. On the other hand, it’s unlikely that a grown man, however nice, will become much, much better in bed than he was the first five times you slept with him. And if you sleep with a man who is unkind to you, there will be more of that; long after the sex is humdrum, the cruelty will be vivid.

4. Most talents are transferable.
If you can raise toddlers and teenagers with relative calm, you can be a CEO. If you’re a good driver, you can probably steer a cab, fly a plane, captain a boat. My years as a waitress―serving food to demanding people in a high-stress environment without losing my temper―served me equally well as a mother, a wife, and a short-order cook for my family. And if you have the teaching gene, you can teach anything. (I mean it. All you have to do is be one lesson ahead of your students. Sole meunière, Latin and Greek, algebra―you can teach it!)

5. Fashion fades; style is eternal.
Not only do you not have to wear torn jeans, a barely-there tank top, and a fedora, but you probably shouldn’t. The point of fashion is to indulge briefly in something fun. The point of style is to have one―whether that’s a sheath and spike heels or slouchy jeans and your husband’s T-shirt―and it should last you a lifetime. All you have to do is think you deserve to look and feel your best and spend some time figuring out how to do it. Don’t know? Find a woman whose style you admire and ask for a little advice.

6. You can’t fake love.
Staying in a love relationship when love is not what you feel isn’t likely to end well. If you know that what you crave is security/disposable income/child care and not the person next to you in bed, do the right thing. It’s true that one can learn to love someone over time and often through difficult circumstances. But unless the two of you agree to wait until you’re old and all the storms have passed, in the hope that love will kick in, it’s better to bail sooner rather than later.

7. Mean doesn’t go away.
Some people get better looking with age; some don’t. Some people soften; some toughen up. Mean streaks tend not to disappear. A person who demeans and belittles you and speaks of you with contempt to others is probably going to be that way for years. The first time it happens, take note. The second time, take your coat and go.

8. No one’s perfect.
I knew that I wasn’t perfect; I just didn’t realize that this also applied to the people I fell in love with. The object of your affection will always turn out to have huge and varied faults. The smart thing is not to look for someone flawless (which is why Elizabeth Taylor married eight times), but to look for someone whose mix of strengths and liabilities appeals to you (which is why she married Richard Burton twice).

9. Ask for help.
It’s possible you’ll get turned down. It’s even more likely that you’ll feel vulnerable and exposed. Do it anyway, especially if you are the helpful sort yourself. Those of us who like to offer assistance and hate to take any are depriving other people of the opportunity to be generous and kind; we are also blinding ourselves to the reality of mutual dependence. You wouldn’t wear pink hot pants and pretend they were flattering. Don’t pretend you don’t need help.

10. Keep your eye on the prize and your hand on the plow.
It’s easy to lose sight of what you want, especially if you haven’t gotten it. I know it’s less work to put the wish away, to pretend that the wish itself has disappeared. But it’s important to know what your prize is, because that is part of who you are. Whether it’s financial stability, two children, a collection of poetry, or a happy marriage, take Winston Churchill’s advice and never give in. Never give in. Never give in.

What truth have you learned about life?

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9 comments:

Kat said...

Hey, this is very nice. Thank you for sharing :)

Maisey's Attic said...

Hi nice to meet you - i've enjoyed reading your blog, and have even made my own "keep calm and carry on" poster - thank you - I'll be back xxx

Zhu said...

I like reading "real Simple", for some reason this magazine always relaxes me. It doesn't take life too seriously and seems to have a solution for every problem!

Good luck on your exams! I know how it feels, I had my midterms yesterday night.

Yasmine said...

@Kat:You're welcome!
@Maisey: Thank you for visiting and letting me discover your lovely blog!
@Zhu: yeah, it is relaxing.Thank you for your wishes, hope that your exams went well.

Sherri B. said...

Yasmine, I can relate when you said that you are a bad learner in life. For years I wasn't wise about people and got hurt by quite a few, now I slow down and let myself wait awhile until I decide on them. I found it doesn't really hurt anything if I do that and it turns out well....Good luck on Sat. with your exam.
Thanks for visiting my blog and that is a nice kitchen isn't it? I think I can take some ideas from it and make some little changes to my own.

Yasmine said...

@Sherri:good tactics with slowing down and giving yourself time to decide. Thanks for your wishes!

Frenchy said...

My top 10:

1) Those who stand for nothing fall for anything...

2) Don't let what others think decide who you are...

3) Things happen at the wrong times, wrong places, and with the wrong people. You regret living it but somehow you always seem to make it through...

4)Love can sometimes be magic...but magic can sometimes be...just an illusion...

5) There are no shortcuts to any place worth going...

6) Never let someone of the opposite sex make you compromise your standards...never...

7) Smart people can do very stupid things...

8) If it hurs, don't do it again...

9) Culture shock will hit you...

10) Understanding is not unquestioning acceptance...

Yasmine said...

@Frenchy: I love your list! So true! I guess you really never stop learning. Thanks for adding this...

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