Lessons Learned in New Mexico Upon Turning 40

1. Trust my gut:  if something doesn’t feel right, if I have serious reservations, if it all seems too difficult, retreat. Set boundaries and keep them. Realize that I don’t have to do everything, or be everywhere. People are convoluted, my higher power is simple.

2. Do not compromise my happiness unless it is for someone I really love, and the situation is indeed dire. Truly.

3. Schedule in alone time, often.

4. Don’t be held hostage by people I don’t know — don’t put myself in a position where they can control my fate.

5. Be helpful, not snarky.

6. Stop and THINK before I speak. THINK how the other person hears it.  Is it: Thoughtful, Honest, Inspiring, Necessary, Kind.

7. Know that I am not responsible for others’: comfort, happiness, self-actualization, successes. Nor am I responsible for others’: unhappiness, discomfort, sense of self, failures or personal belongings.

8. Take time off from New Mexico periodically.

9. Pray, work Step 2. Believe that my higher power can restore me to sanity (sanity = health).

10. Communicate!  Do not be passive-aggressive, and do not expect the worst.

11. Don’t break rules that I worked hard to establish and have experience with via trial and error. For example: do not drive for longer than 6 hours. Do not drive at night.

12. Work on my self-esteem. I know what I am doing, my higher power guides me to know. I trust in and use my relationship with my higher power to feel comfortable enough to set my boundaries and not succumb to peer pressure, “tyranny of the masses.” Trust in my inner wisdom and rise above. Make a decision and stick to it.

13. Creep…avoid creep (“scope creep”) if not getting paid. When getting paid, get paid more. Invoke a creep tax.

14. Material possessions have no meaning.


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