Tuesday, May 24, 2011

bonus post: ultimate blog swap!

today i’m participating in the Ultimate Blog Swap. you’ll find me posting over at all things chic with a post on getaway wtyle, and i’m excited to welcome trish from contemplating happiness with a fantastic birthday-inspired guest post! here she is . . .


I am so excited to be writing a guest post for Sarah at The SHU Box as a part of The Ultimate Blog Swap!

Sarah and I are many miles and many years apart. I’m old enough to be her mom, if I’d only have started a little younger. So what can I say to beautiful, energetic, ambitious, young Sarah and her contemporaries? What do I know that maybe you haven’t had time to find out yet?

I scraped together a list of TEN THINGS EVERY 30ish WOMAN SHOULD KNOW. This is what nearly 50 years on this revolving rock has taught me, so far.

1. Make peace with your mirror. You aren’t going to get any cuter than you are today. Things are going to start moving south. They’ll start to bag and sag and get bigger or smaller in the most unexpected ways. Wait and see: 20 years from now, you’ll look at pictures of your 30-year-old self and admire your own beauty. But don’t be discouraged! You can attain a new kind of beauty and grace as you age, and in a lot of ways, it’s even better than youth. You’ll just have to trust me on this.

2. If you aren’t doing something purely for you, it’s time to learn how. It doesn’t matter if it’s competitive horse diving or counted cross stitch. What matters is that you nurture the fires of your own creativity and expression.

3. Never stop learning. It will help you age gracefully and intelligently.

4. Protect your health now. You know what good habits you should develop. Eat right and eat slower. Live slower. Let go of stress whenever possible. If you smoke, then STOP IT! Damn it! Stop it right now! I mean that. Don’t make me come over there.

5. Simplify. Seriously. I spent the first 25 years of marriage trying to acquire more STUFF, and the most recent 1+ year getting rid of stuff. Why did I buy it in the first place? I should have used the money to travel or get more education, instead.

6. Take the time to take notice of life. Watch your children grow, if you have any. Spend quality time with your friends and loved ones. They won’t remember if your house was perfect or your nails were manicured. Your friends will remember that you made them feel treasured. Your children will remember if you played trucks with them, or that you were the master at basketball, water-balloon fights or story telling. One day, those adorable, little, pink baby-boy-feet are going to grow into big ol’ hairy man feet. And it happens sooner than you think.

For tips 7 through 10, you’re going to need to get a book of matches and some open space outdoors. I want you to build a big bonfire, and throw these things on it:

7. Ugly shoes. How can you feel beautiful in icky shoes?

8. Self-help books and articles. Including this list of 10 things. Don’t fret over your birth order or why you love men who hate to love you for hating them. Or something like that. Just take a good, long look at yourself and appreciate you for all that you are, and all that you will become in life. Choose to be happy. It starts there. Choose it every day, in a million little ways, and trust me: happiness will choose you right back.

9. Workout DVDs. How about, instead of letting someone else tell you how to work out, you take your dog for a walk? Bike to your favorite market and buy some peaches. Or vacuum like you mean it. Whatever.

10. Your bathroom scale. Scales are evil and must be destroyed. Do the numbers matter? Of course not. Make peace with food. You have to eat forever, so you might as well learn how to do it right. Slow down. Don’t worry about a number, measure yourself by how you feel, instead. If you have to lie down on your bed to zip up your jeans? All that really means is that you could be making some better choices. Don’t beat yourself up. Just promise to treat yourself with love and kindness, and lay off the Twinkies.

I don’t really believe that ten tips are going to change anybody’s life, and neither do you. It’s just life, and we have to live it as best we can. If you stop trying so hard, though, and take the time to live, choosing love and happiness whenever possible, it will all work out for the best.


thank you trish - absolutely loved the tips :) visit Life...Your Way to see all of the Ultimate Blog Swap participants!