My daughter sent this to me in the form of two emails a while a go. They are called “Advice From Mara”. I saw who Mara was on some website but I don’t know here personally. She seems pretty level headed to me and she has come up with some very good advice. Of course you didn’t hear it from me. There were 28 entries of advice and I picked out 12 from that list. Any advise I give out to others is usually not believed or used so this is advise from Mara…….
1. If you are voluntarily spending an inordinate amount of your free time doing something, consider that something. Think about yourself at end of your life, looking back on all you have done. Will you want to remember yourself doing this something, or is there something else more worthwhile you could be doing? If there is, do that something else instead. (This is why I no longer argue with people on Internet forums.)
2. Don’t automatically assume you are right all the time. Let others correct you when you are wrong, and be gracious about it; welcome an opportunity to learn. Truth is more important than ego.
3. Sarcasm and snark are not substitutes for wit. Think of snark like salt: it can add flavor, but should be used sparingly. For every Dorothy Parker there are a million YouTube commentators.
4. Being offensive is also not a substitute for being funny. Yes, George Carlin said things that were offensive, but they were couched with brilliant observations and social commentary. You are probably not George Carlin. (If you are, hi, George! Everyone thinks you are dead.) (Actually George Carlin did pass away a few years ago.)
5. As a teacher of mine once said, “being famous is a bad goal.” I agree, for several reasons: first, very few people who want to be famous will ever reach the heights they have dreamed of. Andy Warhol was right when he said that “in the future [i.e., now] everyone will be famous for fifteen minutes.” It’s very easy to be temporarily famous these days, but that is not what most people hope for when they hope for fame. I doubt there is a point where you will be able to recognize that you are famous enough: more likely, you will never feel you are famous or successful enough. Or you will, but it will be fleeting.
In addition to that, fame alone does not bring happiness. In fact, it may be antithetical to happiness. Sure, you’re known by everyone, but more people knowing you also means more people detesting you. You will be under constant scrutiny. You’ll have no privacy. You’ll have no freedom. Enjoy doing what you want and having fun with your friends without being judged? Then you don’t want to be famous.
6. Don’t say anything about someone on the Internet that you wouldn’t say to that person’s face is true: “be nice, the world is a small town.” It can and WILL get back to them. The Internet shouldn’t be just a bigger high school bathroom wall.
7. Yes, it’s important to be honest, but some things do not need to be said. If you feel a compulsion to confess or tell something, ask yourself why. Is it solely to clear your own conscience or to make yourself feel better? In that case, tact should win out. Unless someone is in serious danger, keep it to yourself.
8. The next time you feel like flying into a fit of rage over one of life’s tiny injustices (described here as the Sneaky Hate Spiral), try saying to yourself, “You’re not really angry about this.” Chances are, you aren’t.
9. There is something interesting in everything as long as you are willing to look for it. And often, it’s someone else that can show this to you. I thought fashion was frivolous until I lived with a fashion designer and saw just how much craftsmanship goes into each piece. I thought football was dull until someone told me to think of it like choreography. Allow yourself to be wowed.
10. Unless you are in job interview, no one wants to hear about how smart you are.
11. A cynical attitude is like a callus: a layer of roughness formed in response to pressure, covering what was once raw and vulnerable. Recognize it for the defense mechanism that it is.
And last but not least….
12. Enjoy being alive. Please. Yes, sometimes life is miserable, but misery passes, and the mere fact that you able to experience misery and happiness and anything in-between at all is astounding. Seriously: you exist, and you are able to comprehend that you exist! How many creatures can do that?! I honestly believe that life is the best thing going. Well, technically speaking, it’s the ONLY thing going, but still, appreciate it!! Take some time every day to remember that YOU ARE ALIVE.
So there you have it!!!! Twelve sensible words of advice for everyone!!!