It’s getting so I dread opening my e-mail. It’s not the day-to-day business correspondence or updates from friends and family that bug me. It’s those annoying, e-mail “forwards!” The seemingly endless flow of forwarded attachments, chain e-mails, religious and political commentary…usually part of mass mailings from someone I don’t even know – drive me crazy!
I can put up with a quick quip or the latest cat freak-out video. But my patience runs low when it comes to those touchy-feely, super-sweet videos telling me how to live my life. You know, the still-photo displays of spectacular seascapes or soaring eagles reminding me “Life is short…eat dessert first” or “Learn to embrace your inner child.” They make me want to gag.
So imagine my response when I opened an attachment recently from some random acquaintance, and there it was…a video loop of winter wonderland photos containing 45 life lessons. As my little finger instinctively reached for the “delete” key, the first photo caught my eye – it was beautiful…a stunning snow-covered landscape I couldn’t resist.
As I clicked through scores of lovely snow scenes, I began reading the list of lessons. Oh, a few bordered on the insipid, “When it comes to chocolate, resistance is futile.” (Actually, that’s a true statement.) But several bits of advice rang true. From the lengthy list, here are several snippets of what I think is pretty good advice to take into the New Year…12 lessons for 2012. Enjoy! (I promise I won’t forward the attachment!)
1. Life isn’t fair, but it’s still good.
2. When in doubt, just take the next step.
3. Pay off your credit cards every month.
4. You don’t have to win every argument. Agree to disagree.
5. Cry with someone. It’s more healing than crying alone. (OK, this one’s sort of sappy…but it’s true!)
6. Save for retirement starting with your first paycheck.
7. Make peace with your past, so it doesn’t mess up the present.
8. If a relationship has to be a secret, you shouldn’t be in it.
9. Take a deep breath. It calms the mind.
10. Get rid of anything that isn’t useful, beautiful or joyful.
11. Over-prepare, then go with the flow.
12. What doesn’t kill you…really does make you stronger.
And a bonus lesson – my personal favorite: Everything can change in the blink of an eye…but don’t worry, God never blinks! (Hmmm. Maybe I’m a little more touchy-feely than I thought!)
Happy New Year!
Contact Carol by emailing her at Carol@palomarhealth.org.