49 Life Lessons it took me 50 Years to Learn… (unlearn and relearn)… My 50th Birthday Blog


Inspiration often refers to something potent and powerful.  Motivation can be sourced from it and action is often derived from it.  A desire to do better and be better is why we seek it and a lack of it is often the scapegoat for mediocrity.  The thing about inspiration is that there is no one thing, person, situation or moment that can define it accurately.  We never know when we are going to be hit by it either.  But when it comes, I believe it’s important to recognise it and make use of it.

As I celebrate and am grateful for five decades on this planet, it is a series of inspiring people, situations and moments that have driven me to learn, unlearn and relearn the following 49 Lessons for Life.  Hopefully I will get to practice them for 50 more years!

  1. People just do what people just do. And people just say what people just say. And so do I. I’m not the boss of anyone and no one is the boss of me.
  2. My thoughts create my reality. I can ‘think’ myself up or ‘think’ myself down. Both take the same amount of effort.
  3. Time cannot be replaced. There are no refunds if you change your mind about how you spent it.
  4. Spectacular effort equals spectacular reward.
  5. Good times don’t last… and neither do bad times.
  6. Who I am is enough.
  7. Every decision I make can be changed by making another decision.
  8. Not making a decision is a decision.
  9. Kids turn out. I did and so will my kids.  Some days I nail it and some days I don’t.  And on both of these days, I’m operating from love for them.  Just like my parents were for me.
  10. Sometimes people I love (and people I don’t) will make mistakes, and so will I. It means nothing about them or me.
  11. Sometimes people I love (and people I don’t) will lie, and so will I. It means nothing about them or me.
  12. People are not ‘broken’ and neither am I. No one needs fixing.
  13. The only things I have control over in this world are my thoughts and my actions. I resist making other people’s thoughts and actions my thoughts and actions.
  14. The photos I hate of myself today, I will look back and love in a couple of years.
  15. Comparison is the thief of joy. I am exactly who and where I am meant to be.
  16. Opportunities come along every second of every day.
  17. Paying it forward is more powerful than paying it back.
  18. Receiving is as important as giving. Practice both. It’s a beautiful dance.
  19. What people think of me is none of my business.
  20. Love and kindness is the answer, no matter what the question.
  21. The ‘truth’ is a combination of perception and perspective. There are millions of truths. None are right and none are wrong.
  22. It is not someone else’s ‘job’ to make me happy. Or to make me anything else for that matter.
  23. I can be right or I can have a loving relationship (parents, partners, kids, and friends). I can’t have both.
  24. Giving up being right, even when I know I am, is my fast track to peace and calm.
  25. Giving up being right, even when I know I am, does not make me a pushover or a door mat.
  26. Shit happens. And so does good stuff.  I choose where I allow my thoughts to live.
  27. What I admire in others is a reflection of me.
  28. What irritates me in others is a reflection of me.
  29. Whenever I feel confused and tell myself ‘I don’t know’, the reality is that I do. We all do.
  30. My intuition (gut) will always guide me.
  31. Whatever I have in my life, I created it – this includes the stuff I love and the stuff I don’t love.
  32. Look for the gifts. There is a gift to unwrap in every situation.  Ask yourself ‘What can I learn from this’?
  33. My ‘story’ (beliefs, values, and upbringing) impacts what I say and how I hear. When I understood this I realised that powerful communication starts and ends with me (not the other person).
  34. Awareness is the key to change. Be open to turning the spotlight on yourself occasionally. And then all there is to do is notice what you see.
  35. Exercise is the most affordable and accessible anti-depressant on the planet. Take that shit daily!
  36. What I focus on grows. This applies to anything I turn my attention to.
  37. Sometimes I will do things and I will be scared at the same time. Growth exists on the other side of fear.
  38. Happiness goes where happiness is. Positivity is infectious. Negativity is contagious.
  39. Never underestimate the power of a ‘to do’ list. A sense of achievement (big or small) is a powerful and potent aphrodisiac.
  40. Do what you love and success will follow. Do what makes your heart sing. If it feels light, it’s right!
  41. Nothing changes, if nothing changes. If you want something you’ve never had you will need to do something you have never done.
  42. Nobody can make me ‘feel’ anything, without my permission. ‘Feeling’ anything (happy, sad, accomplished, judged, loved, hated, peaceful, jealous, etc.) is my choice and mine alone.
  43. Honesty is NOT always the best policy. Before I speak I ask myself, how will this ‘land’ on the person I am talking to.  Will it add value to them or will it totally derail them.  Is it loving, necessary or kind? Sometimes the best thing to say is nothing at all.
  44. Mind your mind and mind your business. There are three kinds of business.  My business, other people’s business and universal business.
  45. It’s ok to eat chocolate for breakfast (occasionally).
  46. Whenever possible, I avoid using should, expect and  supposed to in my language. Disappointment often follows these words.
  47. Wherever I am is perfect. There is nowhere to ‘get’. I am already here.
  48. There is no one way to learn something and no one source to learn from. Ask questions, seek solutions, attend seminars, workshops, surround yourself with mentors, read a lot, be open to unlearning and relearning and do it daily.
  49. Always, always look for what’s so right in any situation, any person, in yourself and your life. Because if I could only share one lesson it has taken me 50 years to learn, it would be this one.  It’s the grand master of lessons and is the foundation for the other 48!!

It is not wu-wu, it is not magic, it is not ‘peace, love and mung beans’.  It is a practice.  A daily practice.  Give it a go.  For the next seven days, make a list each day of 10 things that are so right in your life.  I guarantee you will be blown away by how different your life becomes!

Jen xx


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