I love hearing about the lessons and ways of thinking that people arrive at based on their experiences in life. I’m always drawn toward articles, books and interviews where people discuss and are asked about “advice to their younger self.” We all hold so much knowledge based on the experiences and life passages that we have already gone through. Today I’m going to touch upon some feedback that I have, at this point of my life, around the topics of love, friendship & career. These topics are super vast, so I’ve done my best to keep this short and concise, yet raw and truthful.
Here it goes:
What advice would you give to your younger self about LOVE?
If you're unavailable, you will attract unavailable. Period, the end. Man, I know this one.
Be the partner you want to attract. If you want someone athletic, make sure you get out there and get your sweat on. If you want a go getter, make sure you're going after what you want in your own life. If you want someone who loves to adventure, yup, you guessed it, make sure you're down to explore and are open minded to new things. Bottom line, make sure you possess and are actively partaking or working toward what you’re saying you want in a relationship. Like attracts like. Become what you want and it will show up.
Surround yourself with a partner that builds you up, respects you and one whom you feel really good about yourself around. How you feel about yourself when you’re in the presence of another is a huge piece of information. Pay attention.
It’s so cliche, but trust your gut, your inner knowing, the feeling that’s a constant under tone about the relationship that your choosing to be in. Whatever your gut is saying is the truth.
Make sure that, for the most part, your partner’s actions and words match up. If they don’t you have reason to not fully trust them. I know that I trust the relationships in my life that are consistent and reliable. Mean what you say: Say what you mean. Especially within the little things. The little things are a reflection of the bigger things. That’s how trust is built and protected. Be and seek people whose word matches their actions.
Letting go is hard and sometimes the answer. Not all relationships are meant to be forever, even when you want them to be. This is a tough one.
What advice would you give to your younger self about FRIENDSHIPS?
Good friends will tell you the truth in a respectful way. I’ve had some moments in my life that stand out to me where I’ve posed a really difficult question about my life situation to a friend and they’ve looked me dead in the eye and told me the truth, not what I wanted to hear. These can be and are often two very different things. I love the friendships in my life that I know will always say it to me straight. Cheers to honesty with respect and good intentions. Bottom line: Solid friendships are built around authenticity and honesty, even when it might be hard to hear.
Be the friend you want to attract. (Similar to the partner you want to attract.) Learn to possess and BE what you appreciate in another.
Good friends warm your heart and want the best for you. A true friend doesn’t try to “one up” you or compete with you. They just don’t.
If you can’t be yourself in a friendship, what’s the point? Seriously.
Solid friends are solid people. I’m really protective of who I bring into my world because friendships can influence and encourage us to grow or they can block our light. I have a no tolerance policy for low vibe, light blockers. Nor should you. I’m going to go out on a limb by saying that one of the best things I’ve created in my life is my circle of solid, honest, trustworthy and dependable friends. My friends have been and continue to be my largest support system.
What advice would you give to your younger self about CAREER?
Pick a career that matches who you really are vs. who you want to be. Make sure you pick a career that matches your authentic self rather than who you wish you were. Meaning, be careful of getting swept up in an image or coolness factor of a career path. Be true and honest with yourself.
I know your parents love you, but do what you feel called to do, not what they want you to do. Pick a career that calls you. This might be different than the direction that others want you to go into for a multitude of reasons: family business, financial, comfort level, etc. I know that my parents don't really identify with my choice to become a small business owner. They both took a more structured career path. Regardless, I'm glad that I followed what felt true for me. In the long term, the chance of your success is higher if you follow your truth. Your the one who has to live with the reality of your own life.
It might take longer than you want to discover and thrive in your chosen field. Hang in there, it will be worth it in the end if you select a career that’s a true fit for who you are. I remember being in my late 20’s/early 30’s questioning what path I took. Starting my own business was unpredictable. There were days where I doubted where I was going and what I was doing, while other friends of mine were making "good money" and in solid careers. Now, approaching 40, (which I have so much more to say about; coming soon) I’m just starting to see the “fruits of my labor.” I’ve always believed that good, solid things, whether it be relationships, careers or self growth take time. In this fast world, I find myself grounding in the virtue of patience. There are just some things you can’t and should not speed up. I feel this to be true for the area of career.
I would love to open up more of a dialogue around these topics. We’re all teachers based on where we’re at in life and what our journey has taught us thus far. I’m planning on using some of my own personal relationships to further explore these questions and topics. Stay tuned and feel free to share what you've learned.
* The above image was taken by my good friend and photographer, Renata Amazonas.