I found myself taken by her words, as lately, I too have been looking back on what moments have shaped my life to be as I live it today. Life lessons learned, and situations I have overcome, or failed, seem to be what I reflect on the most. It seems they are always the harsh or negative ones that seem to have impacted my life course. I wonder why that is?
I am reminded of a country song by Brad Paisley, “If I Could Write A Letter To Me.” If only we could send our seventeen year old selves a letter from where we are now, a heads up or a warning, saying “don’t go to that party,” or “you have to go to college after high school.” Although I do believe that lessons like don’t talk too much, or don’t be so shy are important, the harsh life lessons that we survive, are the ones I believe truly build our character.
The biggest moment that I have learned from in my 35 years on this planet is this: Never make other people’s priorities more important than your own. That’s what I did at the age of 19, and I believe it truly changed the course of my life. For the better, or the worst, I don’t know. I just know it did. I gave up on me, to put all of my energy into another human being. That was so dumb!
I let all of my goals and priorities crumble away, and by the time I opened my eyes to what I was doing (four years later), I was too far gone. I tried so hard to reconnect with my old goals, but by this time they would be harder to obtain. Everything turned into a constant struggle. Now, I look at all of the events of my past with wiser eyes, and I am moving forward with my goals of 10+ years ago. I just have to go about them a different way.
I applaud the ones who can see with this insight at an earlier age than I did. Always be your own number 1, and your hardest critic. We only have one life, so we better make it a happy one.