Image courtesy of Kim Stiver and Pexels.

What follows are some good ideas I’ve picked up over the years. I doubt that all of them are applicable in all situations (except perhaps for the first five), so treat them like salt and pepper: use them when you need them.

  1. Use your words. People aren’t mind readers.
  2. “No” is a complete sentence.
  3. When people show you who they are, believe them.
  4. No one takes advantage of you without your permission.
  5. If people don’t respect your boundaries, they don’t respect you.
  6. If something serves no purpose to you, it’s okay to get rid of it.
  7. Sentimentality is over-rated.
  8. You are not obligated to be anybody’s outrage monkey.
  9. Nobody whose care you are not responsible for deserves 24-hour access to you.
  10. Comparison is the thief of joy.
  11. Don’t let your past ruin your present or your future. Let bygones be bygones. Let it go. If you need therapy, get therapy, and then do what your therapist suggests.
  12. Not everybody is going to agree with you, and that’s okay.
  13. Learn something new every day.
  14. The quest for perfection will ruin your life.
  15. Put things back where you got them as soon as you are done using them.
  16. Everyone is on a different schedule.
  17. Turn down any and all invitations to pity parties.
  18. Emphasize quality over quantity.
  19. You don’t need to talk all the time. Make time to listen. That’s how conversations work.
  20. Failure is a part of life. Learn how to do the step that comes after failure.
  21. Apologize if you are wrong, but not just to smooth things over.
  22. Have boundaries, make them known, and enforce them rigorously.
  23. Contracts are a thing. Protect yourself and get it in writing. 
  24. Pies don’t have to be perfect because they are pies. People will eat them anyway.
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