When do you become a grown up? Is it when the clock strikes midnight on your eighteenth birthday? Or when you first move out of your parents’ house and have to run a home of your own? Or perhaps it’s marriage that signals the change, or children? Or is it when you find yourself doing something so sensible like making your bed every morning?
Sometimes I feel too grown up for my 31 years. Sometimes I feel I am still just ‘playing’ at being a grown up.
For Christmas last year my Dad gave my brother and I some written guidelines, or 'top tips' for life. It was a very entertaining and insightful read. It inspired me to think about what advice I would give to my children about, well, being grown up and 'life' I guess. So kids, here’s the list:
1. Find two or three things you are good at. Hone these skills and treasure your talents. They are part of what makes you special.
3. Be proactive about the things you can change, accept the things you can’t and move on.
4. Make friends, lots of them.
5. Be active, it’s the best medicine for your body and mind.
6. Drink lots of water. Cheaper and more effective than any moisturizer and better than any diet.
7. Buy and read a newspaper once a week.
8. Three drinks in a night is plenty, four is pushing it. Any more and you will probably regret it.
9. Don’t bother with dieting. Eat sensibly and treat yourself every now and then.
10. Dance and sing even if you aren’t any good at it. It can increase your life expectancy you know!
11. Don’t spend too much time worrying about what other people think. Chances are they are not thinking what you think they are.
12. Only watch TV programmes you are interested in.
13. Mistakes are part of being human. When you do make them, take what you have learnt and move forward. Don’t dwell.
14. Never take risks when it comes to personal safety.
15. Find a career that you love but that doesn’t consume your life.
16. Focus your time and energies on the people who really matter and give you back the same. Be civil to the rest.
17. Be calm.
18. Take a minute every day to be grateful for all that you have.
19. Learn, learn, learn and never stop.
20. Try not to smoke. Cigarettes are addictive, expensive, make you smell and can kill you.
21. Enjoy money, but always have a little set aside. You never know what’s around the corner and when you might need it.
22. See the world. It’s amazing.
23. Never go to sleep on an argument.
24. Develop your own values and beliefs, but be open to new ways of seeing things. Be tolerant of others who think differently.
25. Don’t fret about things you don’t like about your body. No-one else ever will.
26. Working hard will mean you will enjoy partying hard all that more.
27. Wear clothes and colours that suit you, rather than always following fashion.
28. Take lots of photos and write about your experiences. Memories are so precious and don’t last forever.
29. Have fun! And last but definitely not least…….
30. Make your bed every day!
What would be top of your list?