Sharing 36 philosophical pearls of wisdom

Life As I Know It
By Nicole Daughhetee

Last week I discovered that Ben and I share a love of October — not to mention that we share it as a birth month. I was born on Sunday, the 10th day of this 10th month at 4:07 pm in Miami Beach, Fla. Happy birthday to me (last week)!

This year I turned 36, and even my third-grader could tell you that makes me closer to 40 than 30. But I don’t fear 40. I say bring it on! A dear friend once told me that I am like a bottle of nice wine: I only get better with age. For the first time in my life, that is a compliment I can actually graciously accept.

In celebration of my 36 years, I thought I might convey 36 pearls of wisdom I have added to my philosophical repertoire over the years:
1. God is great.

2. Treat other people with the same respect and dignity you would enjoy.

3. Most everything is OK in moderation.

4. Don’t sweat the small stuff.

5. “Do or do not. There is no try.” – Yoda

6. Never underestimate the power of a smile or a warm hug.

7. Practice random acts of kindness.

8. Live with integrity.

9. “Our greatest glory is not in never failing, but in getting up every time we do.” Confucius

10. A handful of close friends is greater than a room full of acquaintances.

11. Time is the best gift you can give the people you love.

12. Sing out loud in your car or the shower. Who cares what you sound like?

13. One slice of really creamy, decadent cheesecake never killed anyone (I hope).

14. Tell the people you love that you love them every day. We are not guaranteed a tomorrow.

15. Independence is a great thing, but it is OK to ask for help when we need it. Asking for help does not make us weak.

16. Admit when you are wrong.

17. Apologize — even when you accidently hurt someone.

18. Sticks and stones might break our bones, but words can break your heart.

19. Crying can be a very cathartic and cleansing act when needed.

20. Never judge a book by its cover.

21. Laugh loud and often.

22. The power of positive thinking really does work (thank you Mom!)

23. Give to those in need. You never know when you might be down on your luck.

24. Find the balance between being nice and being a pushover. There is one.

25. It is ok to say “No.”

26. Taking time for yourself does not make you a bad parent or a selfish human being.

27. Prayer works.

28. If you are not willing to pour 100 percent into your passion, then find something else to pour it into.

29. Forgive those who have hurt you. Anger is toxic and requires too much energy.

30. Learn to communicate your feelings — especially with the people you love.

31. Take a risk once in a while (they can be calculated and not full-on crazy).

32. No one is perfect. We learn by making mistakes.

33. The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over yet expecting different results.

34. Be open-minded. You never know when you might learn something new.

35. Never judge another person until you have walked a mile in their shoes.

36. When you take the time to count your blessings, they far outweigh the negatives.

On this note, I wish each of my readers a most spectacular week. Life is what you make of it, so make the most of this amazing gift each day you wake up.