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If you're not learning something everyday, check your pulse; you might be dead. : Steven Ivory: What I’ve Figured Out Thus Far

Illustration depicting a highway gantry sign with a new skills and training concept. Blue sky background. - Depositphotos.com
Illustration depicting a highway gantry sign with new skills and training concept – Depositphotos.com

*Fresh out of the womb, we’re as pure and innocent as we’ll ever be in this life.  Then immediately, our emotional canvas, pristine and unblemished, starts to be shaded with behaviors, both functional and dysfunctional.

The idea is that if you live long enough, you learn some things. And the more you learn, the more you realize how much there is to know.

In my time here, I’ve discovered some things. Among them: There is personal strength and peace in LETTING GO. Over the years, a lot of my time and energy has gone to holding on to grievances, concerns, and vendettas from all corners of my life. Letting go is not easy, but I am much happier simply releasing these things. And when I succeed, I am so proud of myself that the next time I need to let go of something, the process is easier.

I’ve also discovered that forgiving YOURSELF is one of the greatest gifts you will ever give you.

The power of positive thought is real.  I’m not talking about merely declaring, “Everything is wonderful.” I’m talking about you considering all the good things that have happened to you when you weren’t even trying. Just think of the life you could manifest for yourself if you concentrated on gratitude and optimism.

Businessman in white suit and hat sitting in chair and looking in spyglass / Depositphotos.com
Depositphotos.com

We can do anything we want.  Truly. You can learn how to fly a plane if you take the classes.  You can become a great cook.  Write a book. Learn to drive.  Swim.  Mend broken relationships with friends and family.  Build a company.  Willingness and application are everything.

Beware: Sometimes, a fart is more than just a fart.

Here’s something else I figured out: If you want to keep a secret—I mean, really keep a secret–then keep the secret. In other words, as tempting as it might be, don’t tell anyone.  Usually, what we do with our secrets is tell a person we believe we can trust. And perhaps we can—just not with that secret.  Then that person tells someone they think they can trust, and on it goes. Ask yourself: If you can’t keep your own secrets, what makes you think someone else will keep them for you?

If you are open to it, you can learn something every day.

I’ve discovered that never giving up on a particular goal doesn’t mean continuing to approach that goal using tactics that have proven ineffective. If something isn’t working, then try another approach. And another. Just don’t give up.

Closeup unhappy young man in suit talking texting on cellphone outdoors. Negative human face expression / Depositphotos.com
An unhappy young man in talking and texting on his smartphone / Depositphotos.com

Blaming texting for your being misunderstood is B.S. I hear people say, “Texting and email don’t allow you to express emotions.” That’s a cop-out for failing at clarity. If you know how to communicate succinctly, you can make your point whether you’re texting, using smoke signals, or sending a message in a bottle. People who aren’t clear in their communication online usually don’t communicate any clearer verbally. But they don’t see that.

By the way, I’ve seen a lot of “before” and “after” TV commercials in my time.  Often, the “before” photo is better than the “after.” Just sayin’.

I figured out the maxim, “There’s no fool like an old fool.” It means that if you live long enough, life will present you with valuable lessons, and if you haven’t learned something by the time you’ve reached a certain age, that’s on you.

Time is moving no faster now than when you were a child. The difference is that as an adult you have far more to do in a day, whereas as a child you spent most of your time counting calendar days until your birthday, Christmas, and the arrival of summer.

Speaking of time, despite the adage, I now know that time alone does not heal all wounds.  If you don’t do the work, you’ll find yourself changing the bandages on that emotional pain for the rest of your life.

Close up: cat and dog together lying on the floor - Depositphotos.com
Dog and cat together lying on the floor – Depositphotos.com

You can be an adult but no wiser than a teenager.

Dogs and cats can co-exist. I’ve seen cats take up for dogs when those dogs are fighting other dogs. Maybe you’ve seen the online video where a loose dog from the neighborhood is after a child. Out of nowhere the family cat arrives and sends the dog—a major dog, too—running for the hills. Don’t @#%&! with cats.

The older I get, the more I realize that money is important, but personal mental and physical health is king.

There are true friends and there are warm relationships with associates and acquaintances. It’s important to know the difference.

Some people have one body but two faces if you know what I mean.

Love is the superpower of which we are all capable. You don’t need a college degree to love; you don’t need money or all your physical limbs. You simply have to want to love, and love happens.

Here’s the truth: Human Nature is the world’s greatest university. The only tuition to be paid is attention. Class is in.

Steven Ivory
Steven Ivory

Steven Ivory, veteran journalist, essayist, and author, writes about popular culture for magazines, newspapers, radio, TV, and the Internet. Respond to him via [email protected]

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