Tuesday, May 18, 2010

The One With Great Advice

About a month ago Christine posted this article on her blog and I loved it. It brought back floods of memories and filled me with great reminders that I know I will need at any age!

Advice for the College Girls
[Reprinted from an article entitled "Do As I Say, and Please Call" by Bella English |
The Boston Globe, Spring 2005]

Start the day with breakfast. End it with dessert. Exercise every day (see 'dessert,' above). Make it a part of your life. Smile while you're running or biking or swimming. It will lighten the task and disconcert others. Beware of the 'Freshman 15.' It's a lot easier to keep weight off in the first place than to take it off later. When walking, don't look down. All you'll see is dirty shoes. Look around, look up; observe the world. People-watching is a fantastic pastime. Listen well - to your friends, to the birds, to music. Wear comfortable shoes. They don't have to be ugly. Don't worry if you don't know what you want to be when you grow up. Many of us adults still don't. Write thank you notes. Why shouldn't you take five minutes to say thanks when someone has taken much more than that to buy, wrap, and send a gift? (And if you don't write thank you notes, you won't get as many gifts). Find a soul mate. The most important decision you'll make in life is whom you choose to spend it with. Get a dog. They're walking lessons in love and loyalty. Spend time with children and the elderly. They're master teachers. Go out on dates. Have a relationship. Don't settle for 'friends with benefits.' What is the long-term 'benefit,' anyway? Vote. It's proof that you're a participant, not a spectator, in our democracy. Read the newspaper daily (preferably, this one). Earn your own money. Save some of it. Get a comfortable bathrobe. Guard against smugness, which is simply self-ignorance. E-mail often. Keep in touch with your siblings; they're the ones with whom you will share your old age. Don't take a television to college. If you're doing things right, you won't have the time or inclination to be a couch potato. Find your passion and pursue it. Tell your parents you love them. It won't kill you, and it will thrill them more than you know. Volunteer. Get outside. Study under a tree. Take a break and play volleyball or toss a frisbee. Buy a bike. They're fun and environmentally friendly. Be kind. Tell corny jokes. Don't color coordinate. Dance with abandon. Dare to be dorky. Be curious. Take chances. Go someplace new. Do something different. Laugh often and loudly. Especially at yourself. Never pay full price. Don't worry about geometry. Chances are, you'll never have to use it again. Get acquainted with the washer and dryer. Change your sheets more often than every leap year. Make friends across cultures. Learn another language; go abroad and practice it. Remember that luck is a large part of life, but so are the choices you make. Eat chocolate. Read for pleasure, not just for class. Read everything from Homer to Homer Simpson. Give surprise parties. Don't be afraid to ask for help.Stay in touch with your old friends. They knew you when.Lock your door when you leave your room and when you go to sleep. Always wear a seat belt. Learn to say 'I'm sorry.' Remember to sleep. Remember to go to class. Start 'War and Peace' now. You might finish it by graduation. That tattoo that seems so cool today won't be 10 years from now. Ditto on the nose stud. Be patient with your parents. Someday, God willing, you'll be as old and ignorant as they are.
Call your mother. She loves you."

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