51 Things I Learned From My Mom
Start writing a post

51 Things I Learned From My Mom

38. Between anecdote and metaphor, you can explain anything with potatoes.

51 Things I Learned From My Mom

Maybe it's because my mother is a writer. Maybe it is because my family is descended from oral traditions and has storytelling in every last bit of DNA. Maybe it's because she's wise, or I'm wiser for listening to her. All I know is, my mother is the most quotable person alive -- and if I live by anything, it's "my mom was right".

Here's 51 things my mom has taught me:

1. The frog can't talk about the pond until the frog has left the pond. (I.e... Perspective matters. Time isn't innately bestowing you with experience -- you have to be brave and expansive and driven and travelled. Never stop expanding your horizons. There's always something more beyond the next hurdle.)

2. It's okay to be afraid as long as you never let it stop you.

3. Nothing worth having in life is easy. (If it's hard and you have to fight for it and it scares you: these are good signs.)

4. If your apples slices are too big, you will have crunchy pie and everyone will hate what would otherwise be an iconic masterpiece. If you put a 475 degree glass pan in a sink and run cold water on it, it will shatter. If you use too much oil, your wet vegetables will taste like what sludge looks like no matter how long you cook it. It's better to let something burn than to burn yourself. Mistakes are not a sign of worth. Don't cry over broken glass. It's okay to cry.

5. If you deliberately use words you don't understand, no one else will understand them. And the ones that do understand will know that you don't. Whatever brilliance you naturally have will get lost. Be you. You don't have to try.

6. Failure is in the past. Success is in the future. Focus on good things and live for better days and good things and better things will come. The past is behind you.

7. It doesn't matter what happens. It matters that you tried.

8. It's better to love and live and enjoy what you do and who you are and be true to yourself than it is to do what everyone else wants you to do. Especially when "everyone else" is a small, miserable, judgemental crowd that drowns out all the love and support you have in your corner. Focus on the positive voices.

9. Opinions from bitter people who don't know what the hell they're talking aren't real opinions. They are noise. It doesn't matter how close they are to you.

10. You can't save everybody. When you're being hurt and taken for granted, walk away. A second chance is good. A third sometimes make sense. Infinite chances will only break you, and you don't deserve to be broken by trying to love broken people. Try then Walk away.

11. You can love someone infinitely and know they aren't good for you and don't belong in your life.

12. It's better to be smart and powerful and have made good choices and be yourself and be loved by few people that understand you than to be liked by inconsequential, instant gratification crowds that will mean nothing a year from now.

13. It is better to be happy and liked by people who understand you than to be fake and miserable and act against your values to be liked by everyone.

14. You can only do what you can do. If you did the best you could with good intentions and learn from your mistakes, that's enough.

15. It doesn't make sense to define yourself by the things you hate about yourself and the failures you've had and the hurt you've felt without giving any credit to what you like and what you do right and what you've accomplished and the good choices you've made and the joy you've created for others. You are neither and you've done both. That is true and real.

16. People come in and out of our lives all the time. Cherish who and have now, and don't be crushed when you can't keep it forever. Something else always comes along. It will mean something too.

17. Doing your best is enough.

18. Surviving is more important than perfection.

19. Loving something is a good reason. It's the best reason.

20. Master the polite-nasty. Kill them with kindness. You'll always be happier. You'll always make people happy. You'll usually get what you want.

21. Fake it until you make it.

22. Everything happens for a reason. That doesn't mean what you're feeling isn't real.

23. Self-care. The right to wallow. Hurting "right now", not forever. The power in acknowledging your feelings.

24. You are Wonder Woman but you never have to be Wonder Woman. You can do anything but you never have to do everything.

25. Forgive yourself.

26. Only think about today, tomorrow and 10 years from now. Let go of yesterday.

27. In life, you'll never be asked to get through more than a day. One day at a time.

28. You need to be where you are right now to get where you want to go.

29. Don't stop because of fear. Stop when it's time.

30. You always have a choice. Live your life in such a way that there's always a good one.

31. It matters how you make other people feel. It matters less what other people think.

32. Being right should be a silent victory. If you know, that's enough. That's where the power is. People who have something to prove when there's nothing worth proving have nothing to contribute yet. Their souls are young and reckless. You don't need to waste breath on them and you don't need to be afraid of them.

33. The person who wins is the person who was right - not the one who was loud. Composure is power.

34. Resilience, ambition, work ethic, passion, intelligent, creative, kind, and curious. That's the kind of woman to look up to. Anything on the outside is a mask - by all means, wear a fun one. But never be fooled by them.

35. Learn words. Bathe yourself in them, fashion yourself with them, create yourself with them. Language is an art and a lifestyle and a tool and a medium. Look them up when you don't know them. Don't use them until you do. And never throw sharp ones without knowing who you'll hit.

36. White space is good. Ideas are received more favorably when text is easy on the eyes. Information is better received when your audience, or your friends, or especially your love interest, has to work for it.

37. Give yourself permission to write crap. Focus on actually writing, not on always writing perfectly with infinite foresight. Most "good writers" are actually "great editors".

38. Between anecdote and metaphor, you can explain anything with potatoes.

39. Writing rules apply to any art and any art applies to life. Everyone needs a philosophy. Everyone needs to stand for something. It's just that interesting people reject their first offers, and update as needed for better ones that come later.

40. Verbal literacy and visual literacy are a foundation that you can build anything on, but social literacy is the only thing that can get you through the door.

41. You can do anything. The only people who tell you that you can't are people that believe they can't. If you believe them, and you tell yourself you can't, it's only because you believe you can't - or need an excuse not to try.

42. Never leave a room without making eye contact at least once. If you don't look at people, it won't stop them looking at you. You can't be invisible, so don't act like you are. Take your image, make it your own, and own it.

43. Figure out what your armor is: words, wit, wisdom, faith, confidence, love. Embody it. Embrace it. Wear it always.

44. Don't hurt creatures of the Universe. Not animals, not vulnerable people, not the Earth. They may be silent, but the universe isn't. And it will find its way back to you.

45. If you want positivity, be positive. If you want to be happy, be happy. If you want to have a good time, make it a good time. Your experience of being alive is up to you. Many people who are alive aren't living.

46. You have no idea how long your mom will be here, or how much you'll miss her, or how much losing her scares you until she is terminally diagnosed and you know your time is short. When she says call her, call her. When she tells you to call your mother, it's because she's always right.

47. Love what you have while you have it. Sadly, we do most of our loving when we're losing.

48. Take accountability for yourself. Never take responsibility for someone else.

49. The only people you have to impress are the people worth impressing.

50. Let go. There are few burdens worth carrying. If your heart is broken, let it heal. If wounds are open, let them close. If the page is turning, let the chapter end. Don't be afraid healing will forget. The scars will be there to remind you.

51. You cannot hold up the world with your two hands, but those hands are made for healing, creating, and protecting. Use them wisely.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

An open letter to my father

What you did sounds dumb to me

An open letter to my father
The Truth About My Parents' Divorce

Considering im 18 now & you're one of the best men i've ever met since you have a child; me. I want you to know that I love you, more than anyone, I love you. I don't forgive you for the way you hurt my mother. I'm hurt because you broke our family. Thing went down hill the day you found Laquita. You we're distant & shortly after my mother turned into the coldest, saddest women to walk past me. She's my best friend & so are you. Not one day goes by where I don't wonder what she did wrong. How on earth could you trade your family & the women who loved you unconditionally for a home wrecker? Sounds dumb to me.

Keep Reading... Show less

Is God Reckless?

Exploring the controversy behind the popular worship song "Reckless Love"

Is God Reckless?

First things first I do not agree with people getting so caught up in the specific theology of a song that they forget who they are singing the song to. I normally don't pay attention to negative things that people say about worship music, but the things that people were saying caught my attention. For example, that the song was not biblical and should not be sung in churches. Worship was created to glorify God, and not to argue over what kind of theology the artist used to write the song. I was not made aware of the controversy surrounding the popular song "Reckless Love" by Cory Asbury until about a week ago, but now that I am aware this is what I have concluded.The controversy surrounding the song is how the term reckless is used to describe God's love. This is the statement that Cory Asbury released after many people questioned his theology regarding his lyrics. I think that by trying to clarify what the song was saying he added to the confusion behind the controversy.This is what he had to say,
"Many have asked me for clarity on the phrase, "reckless love". Many have wondered why I'd use a "negative" word to describe God. I've taken some time to write out my thoughts here. I hope it brings answers to your questions. But more than that, I hope it brings you into an encounter with the wildness of His love.When I use the phrase, "the reckless love of God", I'm not saying that God Himself is reckless. I am, however, saying that the way He loves, is in many regards, quite so. What I mean is this: He is utterly unconcerned with the consequences of His actions with regards to His own safety, comfort, and well-being. His love isn't crafty or slick. It's not cunning or shrewd. In fact, all things considered, it's quite childlike, and might I even suggest, sometimes downright ridiculous. His love bankrupted heaven for you. His love doesn't consider Himself first. His love isn't selfish or self-serving. He doesn't wonder what He'll gain or lose by putting Himself out there. He simply gives Himself away on the off-chance that one of us might look back at Him and offer ourselves in return.His love leaves the ninety-nine to find the one every time."
Some people are arguing that song is biblical because it makes reference to the scripture from Matthew 28:12-14 and Luke 15. Both of these scriptures talk about the parable of the lost sheep and the shepherd. The shepherd symbolizes God and the lost sheep are people that do not have a relationship with God. On the other hand some people are arguing that using the term reckless, referring to God's character is heretical and not biblical. I found two articles that discuss the controversy about the song.The first article is called, "Reckless Love" By Cory Asbury - "Song Meaning, Review, and Worship Leading Tips." The writer of the article, Jake Gosselin argues that people are "Making a mountain out of a molehill" and that the argument is foolish. The second article, "God's Love is not Reckless, Contrary to What You Might Sing" by author Andrew Gabriel argues that using the term reckless is irresponsible and that you cannot separate Gods character traits from God himself. For example, saying that God's love is reckless could also be argued that God himself is reckless. Reckless is typically not a word that someone would use to describe God and his love for us. The term reckless is defined as (of a person or their actions) without thinking or caring about the consequences of an action. However, Cory Asbury is not talking about a person, he is talking about God's passionate and relentless pursuit of the lost. While I would not have chosen the word reckless, I understand what he was trying to communicate through the song. Down below I have linked two articles that might be helpful if you are interested in reading more about the controversy.

Keep Reading... Show less
Student Life

10 Signs You Grew Up In A Small Town

Whether you admit it or not, that tiny town will always have your heart.

The Odyssey

1. You still talk to people that you went to elementary school with.

These are the people you grew up with and the people you graduated high school with. The faces you see in kindergarten are the same faces you’ll see for the rest of your life.

Keep Reading... Show less
Student Life

150 Words For Anyone Who Loves Football Games

Why I love high school football games, even though I don't like football.

Dallas News

When most think of high school they think of friend drama, parties, getting your drivers license, and best of all foot ball games.

Keep Reading... Show less

10 Greatest Speeches In Modern American History

The United States is a relatively infantile nation, but its legacy of spoken rhetoric is one of the richest in the world.


Rhetoric, in all its forms, arrives under the scrutiny of historians both for its historical impact and literary value. Dozens of speeches have either rallied the nation together or driven it drastically apart –– the impact of speeches in politics, social movements, and wars is undeniable.

Keep Reading... Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments