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50 Truths Every Woman Must Know ~ If Only I Knew Then What I know Now

I stand, clutching a diet coke and crunch on the ice.  I watch my little girl happily running around like a crazed sugar junkie up and down the sidewalk. I wonder how I got here.  I spit the ice back in the cup. Like most dreamers, I was told to pay attention or I wouldn’t amount to much. I didn’t pay attention to that.

I have a confession to make: I don’t know everything. Close, but not quite. Like anyone else, I have made my fair share of mistakes in life. I realized that I needed to slow down and listen to the advice of women who have graced these halls before me.  There is no running through flower-filled fields to The Sound of Music like I thought as a wide-eyed child.  Where is Julie Andrews when we need her?

We live in a day and age where therapy and antidepressants are as commonplace as eating Cheerios. It’s so easy is to become isolated and to believe we are the only ones experiencing hardship, grief or stress. True, some experiences have to really be lived to be learned, but the sage advice of our fellow sisters is priceless if you listen to the bits of wisdom they have to offer us.

I asked women of all age groups what they wished they knew when they were in their 20’s, 30’s, 40’s and beyond. What would have helped them avoid troubles along the way? Their answers are authentic and honest. Some are also reminders for us to not take ourselves so seriously all the time, and not sit around waiting for Mr. Perfect to sweep us off our feet. Guess what? He’s not coming girls.  Time to get real.

There’s a big world out there with lots to explore and experience. We can learn from each other and the women before us. We women are both strong and vulnerable. A blend of old and new. Both parts valuable, both parts worth holding on to. We need to look at ourselves as honestly as we can, seeing the truths-both the good and bad-within our experiences so that we can pass them on to our daughters, nieces, friends and other women who will nod and say “Yes, I have been there, too.”

50 Truths Every Woman Must Know

1. Know what you want in a relationship, but more importantly, know what you absolutely do not want; and don’t waiver from that. That one thing on the “do not want list” will ultimately kill the relationship. Don’t waste valuable time in life. It is very short. Don’t compromise who you are! ~Dr. B. Kelly, Ph.d

2. Women need to be kinder to nature and animals and lose the fur and excessive use of leather. Men don’t care if you are wrapped in a fur coat. They really don’t, I came to learn. ~Martha

3. Be educated – not just book learning (which is important too), but educated on everything – politics, religion, cultures, history, etc. The more you know about things, the more open you will be to other people. People fear what they don’t know. If we know more about other’s views, faiths and cultures we won’t have to fear them ~Suzanne

4. Have kick ass credit- You need it in life. It’s not a concern when we are younger, but it will be when you want to buy your first car or home. So pay your bills on time and don’t borrow more than you can pay back. ~Grace/ wife & mom

5. Make peace with the past. Let go of painful memories. Clinging to them stunts  your growth. You are not your parents. Have a bad childhood? Join the club. Break the cycle. Your past does not define you! ~Anonymous

6. Don’t worry about who doesn’t like you, who has more, or who’s doing what . Instead, cherish the relationships we have with those who do love us. ~ Erma Bombeck

7. She should never think of her spouse as her “Better Half”…in fact she should always think of herself as an individual in a marriage…not a person who needs to be completed by that spouse or significant other.  ~Jillian

 

 

8. Support other women and celebrate their achievements. ~ Sarah

9. Stand up for yourself. Each person has their own journey in life, and you’d rather make your own mistakes than follow someone else’s path. ~Robin

10. Yes, you WILL survive without a man/husband/boyfriend. Your oxygen has not been cut off! ~ Patti

11. If you are single, use protection when having sex. It is your body. You’re the only one that can protect it! ~ Gwen/ artist

12. Do not obsess over your body if it isn’t perfect. Nobody’s is. Work on what you can, keep it fit and healthy and let go of the rest or you’ll worry yourself to death. ~ Donna

13. Find your spirituality, whatever form it comes in. Believe in a higher power than yourself ~ Carrie

14. Avoid toxic people. Ditch toxic relationships. They are all over. Energy vampires. Drama queens, people who pick fights and complain endlessly. Do not engage them. Back away, then run! Surround yourself with the good ones. ~ Alana

15. She should always have the right to choose and to change her mind. ~J.

16. Don’t be cruel to other women or judge their path (or people in general) then justify it in your own head. Karma will come back to bite you in the ass one day when you least expect it! ~ Jen

17. Spend a whole weekend in bed ~ Pam

18. Learn how to entertain easily & simply ~ Laurin

19. Live and let live. There will always be people who are different than you, with differences of opinion. The sooner you accept it, the better” ~ Your grandma

20. Be  empathetic with yourself so that you can empathize with others. ~Anonymous

21. Treat your best girlfriends like family, because no one gets it like girlfriends do. ~ Karen/ spa owner

22. Never make someone else a priority when you are simply an option. ~ Carolyn

23. Avoid extreme fad diets, they are unhealthy, unbalanced and impossible to maintain over the course of a lifetime.  ~ Tina

24. Great sex! It keeps you young! ~ Anonymous

25. Truly befriend another woman. Sometimes we can be so catty and jealous. Layoff the passive/aggressive competitive vibe ~ Cheryl

26. She should LOVE herself in all ways. She should get therapy if she needs to. Everyone needs it and it is a great gift to give to ourselves. ~ Anonymous

27. Trust your intuition. Listen to warning bells!  My intuition has never been wrong! I just didn’t listen because I wanted what I wanted. But my sister, I Have Learned! ~Cheryl

28. Know how to buy a good car without being taken for a ride. ~Amber

29. Wear sexy underwear! Even if you are single! Even if no one will see it. ~ Anonymous

30. Never act your age. Acting “adult” all the time is over rated. Laugh and have fun. ~Corinna

31. Try to be ok with what life throws your way. There’s many bumps and up’s and down’s. The better you can roll with the punches, the easier time you will have  over the long run. ~Leslie/business owner

32. If you have a calling follow your calling. Your dream. Your heart. You have a brain, use it . Do not fear your own creative genius. It is genuinely yours. Don’t let anyone try to tell you how to think or to feel, you know.  ~Deb/Music Therapist

33. Maintain a stable, comfortable body weight. You don’t have to be stick thin. Your body has it’s own natural weight. Obesity and being underweight are not healthy over the long term of your lifetime. Women’s weight tends to fluctuate over the years with having children and different life stages. Try to maintain a stable weight within a five to ten pound range without going under or over that range. ~Beth

34. Don’t sweat the small stuff. Easier said then done. ~Sarah H.

35. Know when to cling to something, and when to let it go ~Carolyn

 36. Let it go. Begin again. Follow your heart. ~ Deborah

37. Invest in assets, something that puts money in your pocket every month. ~ Tracy

38. Don’t let other people decide who you are and what you should do. Know yourself and follow your heart. If you believe in yourself, nothing can stop you from achieving what YOU want. I wish someone had told me that… and that I had believed them! ~ Suzanne

39. I wish I could tell my 24 year-old self that what I needed most at that time, when it came to men. To learn how to “just say no” vs. the “just do it” approach I followed from ages 17-23-ish. Instead, I made a pact with God that I wouldn’t pursue a relationship until I understood myself more and was able to express myself better. ~Pauline

40. Your true “calling” has the ability to change the world. Follow that calling to the ends of the earth ~Alisa

41. Life is all about LOVE … of self and others. That’s ALL that really matters. Look for the best in others (including yourself) and focus on that. Don’t worry about what other people think about you. Follow your heart and trust your “gut-instinct” ALWAYS.  ~Lisa

42. Don’t be a victim. You are the master of your own destiny. Make your time here the best you can because nobody is going to hand it to you, you have to do it for yourself. And ALWAYS be kind to people. ~Anonymous

43. To relax and enjoy life while you’re young! Not that I’ve never enjoyed it, but  I’d have been more aware. ~Crissy

44. If you can be ok in your own company and be self reliant, you can really do anything. ~ Grace

45. Nourish you body with healthy foods. Excessive smoking, drinking and eating fatty fried foods and lots of red meat will kill you. Fuel yourself with better choices. There’s a wealth of knowledge out there at your fingertips, use it. None of it makes a difference unless you apply it. ~ Rena

46. Don’t ever be an “expert”. That’s the minute you stop learning. ~Rise

47. Join some sort of exercise class early, like dancing, or some sport that you just love. And…there’s always going to be someone prettier, richer, or smarter than you, so don’t try to compete in a losing battle. Just be the best you can be. ~Jackie

48. Because sometimes I like what I see, and sometimes I don’t:“Accept everything about yourself – I mean everything. You are you and that is the beginning and the end – no apologies, no regrets”  ~ Rise

49. Without the heart there can be no understanding between the hand and mind.  ~Celeste

50. Don’t try to be someone you are not- to impress anyone! Instincts are the internal compass that influence us to become who we were created to be. In the younger years, I talked myself out of things because I was trying to be what was expected of me. Now I am living in my authentic self with all its quirks. ~ Cheryl

All the good advice in the world won’t do you a lick of good until you ultimately choose to make up your own mind and apply it. Take it all with a grain of salt, chew on it, mull it over and then decide for yourself what works best for you and the path you are on. For those of us with children, these are gentle reminders that they can take with them down the path of life.

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photos courtesy of:

Artemis photo, Ambro, Photostock, Naypong, Photouten and Worradmu

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