Posts Tagged ‘life lessons’

Word: Reach for the sky even it scares you

background of woman looking up to sky with reach for the sky inspired mantra

This is a very uncharacteristic post for me to write. I have tended to shy away from writing this sort of content on my blog for fear of being seen as boasting. But this very post is about stepping out of one’s comfort zone. So I stepped out of my comfort zone to write it!  

 

REACH FOR THE SKY EVEN IF IT SCARES YOU.

I usually try to come up with a post for the #candidcuddles linky series that relates to what is happening in my life at the time. Since I started hosting the series with Becky, I’ve been constantly amazed at how I get to Friday each week, scratching my head over what I’m going to use as my words of wisdom topic the following Monday, and then have a light bulb moment when it suddenly becomes totally clear! This week is no exception.

As Becky knows (in fact, she’s been a wonderful mentor where this is concerned…to the point where I may just have to start paying her for her blogging consultancy services!), I’ve been working increasingly on my income-earning goals for the blog this year. With the exception of lovely opportunities that have come my way (eg Lucas Frank sponsoring my BML attendance, working with Mother and Baby Innovation Gold Award winner Litecup UK, publishing a few sponsored posts and reviewing certain products/services etc, I haven’t really pursued the monetisation of Absolutely Prabulous to any significant degree in the three years I’ve been blogging. But things are about to change! I do apologise in advance for the slightly ‘street’ style language) but to put it bluntly:

 

2017 IS THE YEAR OF THE HUSTLE BABY!

I’ve talked openly with friends and family for some time about how I absolutely love writing – and will always write – but that my long term aim has always been (as it is for many bloggers) to eventually derive an income (be that through the writing or other initiatives). And there’s the crux: the word ‘eventually’.

Eventually has been the key cause of delay (my natural tendency is to procrastinate). Eventually has been the term I let myself use time and time again when friends have asked how one monetises a blog. “Oh it’s such a long haul getting there but yes I will eventually monetise it” I’ve responded countless times. This is indeed true; it really can take years to significantly monetise a blog (depending on what one defines as blog income/monetisation).  However, the simple truth is…

 

I JUST MADE EXCUSES. I DIDN’T EVEN TRY TO REACH FOR THE SKY!

  • I didn’t actively nurture any brand collaborations.
  • I barely looked at a single one of those emails that would land in my inbox about paid content writing opportunities / how to leverage one’s subscription list / how to get the most out of Facebook advertising or how to use Instagram properly for blog growth yada yada yada
  • I hardly responded to a single sponsored post enquiry (because I didn’t even know what they were for the first two years!)
  • I hardly followed a single brand back on Twitter because I didn’t actually realise it’s one of the best ways of establishing a relationship and getting the conversation going. In fact, it was only when I read a review by my genius of a Candid Cuddles co-host Cuddle Fairy herself (in which she mentioned how the brand in question had followed her on Twitter) that the penny dropped.
  • I didn’t submit content to a single site, beyond my HuffPost ones or those written for fellow bloggers’ sites.

 

WHY? BECAUSE I WAS SCARED

  • Scared of receiving a ‘no we’re not interested’ if I dared approach a brand (the phrase ‘What have you got to lose? The worst they can say is no’ didn’t help at all as my internal reaction was ‘I’d lose all self confidence because no IS indeed the worst outcome!)
  • Nervous of my writing being rejected after that one time I submitted to Scary Mommy only to be turned down (ridiculous of me because the rejected post then went viral on HuffPost!)
  • Terrified of the whole follow/no follow link thang
  • Ignorant of the potential benefits of publishing  third party prewritten content on my site
  • Convinced my stats and DA etc weren’t good enough

On and on it went. The fear, the procrastination, the hawing and humming and conjecturing and goodness-knowswhat-else-ing.

Then through interesting chats with my blog wife Talya of Motherhood the Real Deal who shall be henceforth known as Seriously Switched On Cookie and of course my  #candidcuddles bud Becky whom I’m just going to start calling Social Media Queen and Laura of Life With Baby Kicks who is sooooo ridiculously savvy when it comes to all manner of blogdom that it is almost annoying (it’s ok I can say that, she knows I lurrrve her), I started to come out of my self-created shell and dip my toes out of my comfort zone. And you know how it goes folks…

a mantra about taking steps to reach for the sky

 

I won’t go into details at this point as I prefer the ‘proof of the pudding’ approach rather than the ‘opening my gob, sounding like I’m bragging and then jinxing everything’ one. Suffice to say, I have some wonderfully exciting projects lined up, am talking to all sorts of fab people both here in Malta and in the UK (I have a rather exciting meeting lined up in fact when I’m in London next week for more #BloggersCafe filming) and am simply buzzing with excitement over all the possibilities that 2017 holds in store, if I play my cards right and work hard to see it all come to fruition! (And yes I know it’s an ‘if’ but I like to see it as more of a ‘when’.)

 

IT IS ALL BORN OUT OF GOOD ADVICE FROM SOME AWESOME PEOPLE SUCH AS THE LADIES MENTIONED AS WELL AS MY OWN SHIFT IN ATTITUDE

a willingness to reconsider ideas and collaborations that may not bring in much money themselves but that set me up nicely for future benefits and projects.  I don’t underestimate for one second just how much work and dedication it will all take (jeez I’m already doing 50 hour weeks on this thing as it is!). Or bravery.

It’s gonna take a whole load of bravery, of putting myself out there, taking rejection and finding that some ideas just don’t work out the way I’d hoped.

There are projects planned that are already making me nervous just thinking about the level of effort required and the possible failure at the end. But I have a fire in my belly that I haven’t had til now.

Because finally…I know that I have to reach for the sky, even if it scares me. Or in more AbPrab lingo:

background of woman looking up to sky with reach for the sky inspired mantra

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Quotes Linky: Candid Cuddles 72

Candid Cuddles 72 quotes linky featured image

Welcome to Candid Cuddles 72 folks

I don’t know how I’m already writing this post when it feels like I only just wrote last week’s. The week’s are flying by. Thanks so much to you superstar linkers from last week. I loved all the ones on my ‘rosta’ of reading but my fave was Madeline’s with A Note on Kindness which totally echoed something I’ve been saying for a while now! Becky’s was by the lovely Sarah of Blind Intuition with a post about being Fed Up With Your Toddler!

About Candid Cuddles

The #CandidCuddles quote linky is about being creative, sharing a message, a personal insight, a mantra that helps you in your life and so on. Posts with any type of quote are welcome to link up. The quote can be typed or a graphic. The quote can be inspirational, motivational, funny, sarcastic or anything else you like. If you are new to Candid Cuddles & need any help linking up, you can read Becky’s Linky Guide or tweet either of us at @AbPrabulous / @CuddleFairy.

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Candid Cuddles 72: When/Where/How!

* Will be open from Monday 7:00pm – Wednesday 7:00pm GMT.

* Every linked post gets a comment from a host & a RT from both of us.

* Pin your quote graphics to the Candid Cuddles Pinterest board. Contact to be added to the board.

* Becky and I will each pick our favourites to feature on our blogs each week.

The Rules:

1. Add our badge to the HTML / text portion of your post (or a back link to cuddlefairy.com  and absolutelyprabulous.com)

Absolutely Prabulous
2. Link your post via the inklinkz button bottom left of this post.
3. Please comment on both Host Posts, the post directly before yours & one more of your choice. Feel free to comment on more than that, but please do those 4 as a minimum.

4. Pinterest Board Rules: Pin one quote per week to the board. The quote pinned must be linked up here.

5. After you link up, tag us for a retweet: @CuddleFairy @AbPrabulous.
Be sure to include the hashtag #candidcuddles.

(I don’t want to list this is an actual rule but if you’d like to follow me on my various social media, if not already, then I won’t stop you! You can find me on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

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So…if you have a quote, inspiring words, a funny saying etc that strikes a chord with you, we’d love it if you shared it with us here on Candid Cuddles 72. We look forward to reading your posts!

inlinkz


Word: How a Parent Fail Can Lead to a Parenting Epiphany!

Are you one of those people who’s an arts and crafts wizard?

The kind who can whip up the most amazing creation with nothing but a few buttons, some glue, a piece of foil and a cereal box?  Or are you like me?

 The kind of person who can barely draw a straight line?

Why do I ask? Well, all I’ll say is this week’s words of wisdom and vlog are inspired by none other than my a total parent fail…and my 7yo daughter who led me to come up with the following:

 

Want to know why I came up with this? Of course you do. Go watch 🙂

Quotes Linky: Candid Cuddles 71

Candid Cuddles quotes linky featured image

Welcome to Candid Cuddles 71

Hulloooo! Welcome back to Candid Cuddles (and welcome for the first time if you are new). It’s the end of January people! How on earth did that happen?!  For me it seems to have flown by and here we are at the final Candid Cuddles of the first month of 2017 before headig into February.  Cheesy as it may sound, I have found myself struggling to choose a favourite linked post this month as the quality has been absolutely brilliant amongst all the ones I’ve read.  In the end, I went with What my Fridge Says with the most beautiful set of words: A grateful heart is a magnet for miracles. Go read if you haven’t already. Becky’s was the post by Little Hearts, Big Love

 

Right, on with the show!

The #CandidCuddles quote linky is about being creative, sharing a message, a personal insight, a mantra that helps you in your life and so on. Posts with any type of quote are welcome to link up. The quote can be typed or a graphic. The quote can be inspirational, motivational, funny, sarcastic or anything else you like. If you are new to Candid Cuddles & need any help linking up, you can read Becky’s Linky Guide or tweet either of us at @AbPrabulous / @CuddleFairy.

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Candid Cuddles 71: When/Where/How!

* Will be open from Monday 7:00pm – Wednesday 7:00pm GMT.

* Every linked post gets a comment from a host & a RT from both of us.

* Pin your quote graphics to the Candid Cuddles Pinterest board. Contact to be added to the board.

* Becky and I will each pick our favourites to feature on our blogs each week.

 

The Rules:

1. Add our badge to the HTML / text portion of your post (or a back link to cuddlefairy.com  and absolutelyprabulous.com)

Absolutely Prabulous
2. Link your post via the inklinkz button bottom left of this post.
3. Please comment on both Host Posts, the post directly before yours & one more of your choice. Feel free to comment on more than that, but please do those 4 as a minimum.

4. Pinterest Board Rules: Pin one quote per week to the board. The quote pinned must be linked up here.

5. After you link up, tag us for a retweet: @CuddleFairy @AbPrabulous.
Be sure to include the hashtag #candidcuddles.

(I don’t want to list this is an actual rule but if you’d like to follow me on my various social media, if not already, then I won’t stop you! You can find me on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

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So…if you have a quote, inspiring words, a funny saying etc that strikes a chord with you, we’d love it if you shared it with us here on Candid Cuddles 71. We look forward to reading your posts!

Word! You Don’t Reach the Summit Without…

Well I can honestly say I didn’t want to post my vlog for this week’s Words of Wisdom post that I usually link up to the #CandidCuddles linky.

Why? Oh let me see, less than ideal image quality, cars hooting, wind blowing but these are minor issues compared to how many TIMES I said the phrase ‘it takes time’. Jeez Louise. I do apologise. Even worse, I kind of feel I didn’t quite say what I wanted to say clearly. Grrr.

Anyway I’m about to break a record for the shortest post ever because I’m racing against the clock to get this post up on my site. Oh lucky you! A short post and a video that is a bit shorter than the last one!

 

 

Word! Freedom Is…

I did something profound and veritably life-changing the other week.  By doing it, I think I may have discovered what freedom is!

Well alright life-changing may be a stretch but honestly, the sense of liberation that this one act has given me is simply incredible. The freedom is on a mental level and also on a practical level in terms of how I manage my days. That’s enough for me! Honeslty, I’ve been walking around grinning like the cheshire cat the last fortnight because of it and I highly recommend it.

What is she talking about this time?

freedom is deleting apps from your phone

 

It was time to make a change in my life.

What is it about a New Year that makes us sit up and reevaluate our life, ourselves etc? I don’t know but I’m so glad my phone addiction is one area I’ve managed to set a goal that I already put into place on January 2nd. So far, I’m sticking to it! I feel like I checked into Phone Addicts Anonymous or something!

I’m trying to make my Words of Wisdom posts shorter when they include a vlog as I don’t think it’s fair to make you read a long post and THEN ‘make’ you watch a video at the end of it! (See how good I am to you?)

So without any further ado, here is my first vlog of 2017 where I explain what freedom is for me (with apparently unkempt hair which I swear I HAD brushed before shooting the vlog!).

If that doesn’t work, then try this link.

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The Quotes Linky: # Candid Cuddles 69

Welcome to Candid Cuddles 69

A huge thank you to all of you who turned out to kick things off brilliantly last week with our first Candid Cuddles of the year. It was wonderful to see ‘old’ faces and welcome some newcomers!

Talking of newcomers, my favourite linked post from last week (although it was a bit hard to choose) was from The Naughty Forty Diaries. I loved the sentiment of Tracy’s post 2017… and particularly love seeing a familiar quote done in a different way (in this case “life is too short” which comes up a lot on this linky and with good reason!). Becky’s fave was by the lovely Jaki with I Love my Life which I’ve just read and have to admit to crying over! I found it a very emotional read and wondered whether my eldest would be able to say this about her life.

Right, on with the show!

The #CandidCuddles quote linky is about being creative, sharing a message, a personal insight, a mantra that helps you in your life and so on. Posts with any type of quote are welcome to link up.  The quote can be typed or a graphic. The quote can be inspirational, motivational, funny, sarcastic or anything else you like.  If you are new to Candid Cuddles & need any help linking up, you can read Becky’s Linky Guide or tweet either of us at @AbPrabulous / @CuddleFairy.

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Candid Cuddles 69: When/Where/How!

* Will be open from Monday 7:00pm – Wednesday 7:00pm GMT.

* Every linked post gets a comment from a host & a RT from both of us.

* Pin your quote graphics to the Candid Cuddles Pinterest board. Contact  to be added to the board.

* Becky and I will each pick our favourites to feature on our blogs each week.

The Rules:

1. Add our badge to the HTML / text portion of your post or a back link to cuddlefairy.com or absolutelyprabulous.com

Absolutely Prabulous
2. Link your post via the inklinkz button bottom left of this post.

3. Please comment on both Host Posts, the post directly before yours & one more of your choice.  Feel free to comment on more than that, but please do those 4 as a minimum.

4. Pinterest Board Rules: Pin one quote per week to the board. The quote pinned must be linked up here.

5. After you link up, tag us for a retweet: @CuddleFairy @AbPrabulous.
Be sure to include the hashtag #candidcuddles.

(I don’t want to list this is an actual rule but if you’d like to follow me on my various social media, if not already, then I won’t stop you!  You can find me on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

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So…if you have a quote, inspiring words, a funny saying etc that strikes a chord with you, we’d love it if you shared it with us here on Candid Cuddles 69.  We look forward to reading your posts!


Word!: There is Nothing as Classy as Women’s Wit and Wisdom

I was back in the UK in December to film my brand new vlog series

with Just Saying Mum (and yes you must ‘tune in’ when we start airing Season 1…I get such a kick out of saying that).  Anyway, what do you do when you live on a dusty little rock in the Mediterranean where the shopping facilities have a long way to go in terms of range and price (despite having improved in recent years) and you’re in London in December? Yep, it’s a no brainer: London + December = shopping. So I got the Hubster’s and kids’ gift shopping all wrapped up (no pun intended). Of course, I committed a typical ‘mum’ oversight and totally forgot to buy myself anything…except for this amusing Women’s Wit mini desk calendar which I picked up:

Women's wit 2017 calendar

 

I have always, for as long as I can remember, admired and adored funny, feisty fearless women. 

such as the Victoria Woods, Julia Walters, Joan Rivers, Lucille Balls, Imelda Stauntons, Melissa Macarthys, Ellen Degeneres’s and Tina Feys of the world, to name a miniscule few and not forgetting female film directors, authors and political activists etc.  So, in my first Words of Wisdom post of 2017 for the #CandidCuddles linky, I thought I’d simply share four of my favourite quotes so far from the pages of my new women’s wit calendar.

It seems apt to showcase some wise and wonderful quotes when so many of these women’s wit lines are great mottos that might inspire those of you who want to make some 2017 resolutions but are struggling for inspiration.

Talking of resolutions, let’s start with this one which does ‘what it says on the tin’ as the old advert goes. Not a bad philosophy to start things off this year right?:

Can I be an obnoxious mother for a second and say how impressed I am that my 12yo girl and 10yo boy singled this one out and have mentioned it about three times since last week as being inspiring!

Next is this line by famous classics author George Eliot (whom I studied at school for years before discovering was female!) which I simply loved the second my eyes fell upon it. It is never too late people!

 

I can’t say I’m the biggest Chelsea Handler fan BUT methinks the woman doth speak sense here. I particularly love the last bit as I wholeheartedly agree with it (and frankly would never have launched this blog if not, as I pretty much relied on making fun of myself for most of my material the first 18 months or so).

Quote by Chelsea Hander on women's wit calendar

 

Last but not least, one of my all time favourite lines. Ever. A variation of these words was featured in the fantastic film The Holiday directed by Nancy Meyers who was in fact a contemporary of Nora Ephron, who is quoted here.  (FYI, if you don’t know it, The Holiday is the one where Jude Law couldn’t have been more handsome, Cameron Diaz was annoyingly beautiful and Kate Winslet and Jack Black’s characters make you just fall in love with them.) There is a wonderful restaurant scene where Winslet’s dining partner is trying to give her advice and this line comes up. I shan’t say much more in case you’ve not seen it.

quote by Nora Ephron women's wit calendar

 

 

By the way, if you’d like the Women’s wit calendar to help keep you inspired and smiling this year, you can get hold of it on Amazon. If you do decide to buy it and click on this particular link featured here* rather than going to separately to their site, I make a few cents off it..not enough to actually buy myself a coffee but possibly enough for the paper cup 🙂

 

So no vlog from me for this first Words of Wisdom edition of 2017.  

As I rather foolishly didn’t take a proper break over Christmas (because I ended up writing a 2016 review and George Michael tribute and then worked on Bloggers’ Cafe, the aforementioned new vlog series), I’m keeping it simple and easing back into things this week! But I’ll be back with a wee vlogette for you next week, I promise. (Do you like the way I assume you’re actually waiting for a vlog from me? Just humour and old woman and pretend you are.)

Seriously, I hope you enjoyed a few of these witty words as much as I did reading them.  In my opinion:

there is nothing as classy as a wise and witty woman in white typeface on a black background

 

*Disclosure:
Absolutely Prabulous is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.”

 

DO YOU HAVE A FAVOURITE QUOTE BY A WOMAN? I’D LOVE TO KNOW!

HAVE YOUR SAY! by using the Facebook or website comments box below.

SHARE THIS POST! via the social media share buttons below.

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Thanks Muchly!

15 Things I Want to Pass on From Three Years of Blogging

15-things-i-want-to-pass-on-from-blogging

 

Absolutely Prabulous, my Fourth Child is Three Years Old!

November is a mad month for me and my fam.  Two nephews’ birthdays, parents’ anniversary, two of my kids have birthdays three days apart (hail my legendary family planning skills NOT) and the day after the second of those birthdays, my blog has its birthday (or blogiversary as it’s known).  Now nature and biology are what they are; I couldn’t do an awful lot about my kids’ dates of birth once the baby-making deed was done. But quite why I chose to launch my blog the same week in which I am drowning in birthday organisation and my kitchen is covered in flour,sugar and eggs, I will never know.  Excuse me while I sit down.

Anyway, I Thought I’d Write a Blogiversary Post…

Now I’ve never written one of these before as it didn’t dawn on me to do so and frankly I wouldn’t think I have much to say.  However, I’ve noticed blogiversary posts here and there and it got me thinking that it would be a good idea to get a few thoughts down.  I mean surely  I’ve learned something right? So here you go, these are just fifteen of the many things I’ve learned in three years of blogging!

 

1) Almost Every Blogger Goes Through Blog Angst and Eventually Comes out the Other Side (one way or another)

Blog angst? I could write the book on it. Trying to do it all: write great content, build that  Faceberk/Twatter/Instaglam following, read a dozen posts on just one linky and comment my bits off to support my fellow bloggers (and maybe pick up a new follower) get published on other sites in the hope of traffic and backlink benefit, work with brands offering nice-to-have products and ambassadeurship opportunities, writing sponsored posts that don’t make me feel like I’m selling my soul, earning an income SOMEHOW out of the whole damned gig.  I could go on!    I’ve written about the whole blog/family/life balance thing in Confessions of a Guilty Blogger and I Love Blogging but I’ve Made a Decision.  What’s more, recently I read a cracking one by Squished Blueberries on this issue.  I still go through phases (frequent phases ha ha) of wondering what I’m doing but I think I’m more at peace now than I ever have been with my blog (my close blogging friends will probably laugh reading that bit).  I think more or less bloggers can be split into four categories:

Some bloggers lose themselves down a rabbit hole and give up altogether.
Some make their peace upon recognising the enormity of effort required and settle for doing what they can when they can.
Some decide what they want from blogging from the start and go after that.
Some have a laid back approach to the whole thing but end up being unexpectedly successful.

 

2) It’s okay to Write What People Want to Read but Don’t Forget to Write for Yourself Too

Now I know the super league élite will shake their heads at this.  Obviously, if your game plan from the word go is to build a highly-monetised blog with incredible monthly stats, this doesn’t apply. That game plan involves writing specific content in a calculated stye.  But I honestly believe it’s so important to write posts for you, posts that are straight from the heart whether they’re sensitive or controversial, content that says what you really feel rather than soulless words you’re typing just to be seen to have typed them, posts you simply have to share no matter if it’s only you and your mum reading them.  As the Glorious Life said recently (in a post about blogging) the one thing that you have is you.  Nobody can write what’s in your heart like you can, because it’s in your heart.  Nuff said.

 

3) It’s Fab to Win a Blog Award but Life Doesn’t Change Much and You Still Have to do the Laundry

A tongue in cheek one here!  Winning my BiBs award was the biggest highlight of this year.  I still smile about it. It was also an interesting lesson…I went through a lot of doubt wondering if every post I wrote had to be amazing after that.  I wouldn’t say I had any more brand approaches than those I was already receiving.  And rather annoyingly I still need to do  mum things. Pfft.

 

4) You Learn SO Much as a Blogger…but You’ll Never Know Everything

I often think I don’t know much about blogging, yet repeatedly there are examples of just how much I’ve learned in the last three years.  From building my site to how to get Faceberk to stop pulling the wrong images to SEO best practice to cross-posting to duplicate content penalties to photoshop to THIS! (<p>&nbsp;</p>) to plugins to DA’s to putting the right person at the front of a tweet to getting grips with YouTube to hashtags to the correct social media images sizes…the list goes on.  Yet despite knowing a crazy amount of stuff and being quite fluent in blog speak, it’s impossible to know everything. I can still spend hours trying to figure something technical out which once figured out, will then change some time later due to Google changing its rules or Faceberk messing around yet abloodygain with its algorithm or Instagram deciding it no longer allows this, that or the other.

 

5) Not Everybody Understands Reciprocity and at Some Point You Probably Will Experience a Bloggers Behaving Badly Incident

Yeah…I’ll let than one hang there in the air for a while and perhaps elaborate on that in the future. For the time being I’ll just say, be kind.  Good karma is…well exactly that. Good.   Sharing someone else’s post doesn’t take long and it makes them SO happy. Pay it forward.  The blogosphere is big enough; there is room for all of us. And when another blogger does you a kind deed, be it sharing a post with a big write up or just a simple RT, thank you goes a long way.  I know we all get busy doing life and sometimes the day/week gets away from us. But thank you takes seconds. Just saying.

 

6) Content Will Aways Win over Design but a Shiny Looking Blog Doesn’t Hurt!

Okay, we know it.  You can have the sexiest best designed blog everrrr. But if you’re not writing engaging/useful/moving/informative/relateable (pick your adjective of choice depending on what you’re all about) content that people want to read, then it really doesn’t matter how nice your blog looks, that reader ain’t staying.  However, just throwing in my AbPrab tuppence worth here, it doesn’t hurt to have a well designed blog that is easy on the eye. (Ignore the design of mine, it’s driving me nuts after three years and I need a change!) I’ll be honest, superficial as this may make me sound, I’ve immediately clicked away from blogs the layout/colour/fonts of which gave me a headache. If your site is easy to navigate and half decent, it MAY just be the difference between that person staying on your blog a wee bit longer to see what else you have to say and clicking away. Simples.  Talking of content:

 

7) You Can Spend Days Labouring over a Post You Think is the Best Thing Ever and it Bombs, Then Bash one out in Minutes and it Goes Viral

Go figure.  This is why I’m not sure scheduling posts actually works for me.  I find they are the ones that are too thought out and almost a bit soulless.  The ones I write after a whimsical idea work best.  So I’ve decided not to put the same level of meticulousness into every post I write, as I used to.  I’ve actually made myself let posts go out recently that are 90% ok instead of endlessly reworking them as I used to.  Hubster once told me the saying:

Better an imperfect plan executed today than a perfect plan put off til tomorrow.

 

I kind of agree even though the perfectionist in me wanted to rip her own ears off when he first said it.  He also said something else which has turned out be proven right time and time again.  In fact, this very post has been one of those examples because I almost scrapped it thinking it would just come across as self-aggrandising rather than helpful (and am just adding this bit a week after original publication as so many people have described is a really useful tips post):

Don’t second guess whether you should publish a post because it’s ‘not good enough’. It’s not actually up to you to decide what people do and don’t want to read. It’s up to them. So just write the damned post!

In fact, this also ties in with something else he pointed out (number 8).  Honestly, I might want to wring his neck sometimes but the man doth speak sense:

 

8) You Need to Learn What to Write for Human Eyes and What to Write for Google Eyes

Love it! Epiphanyyyyyyyy. (Can you hear me singing that?)  Believe it or not, not every post needs to be a masterpiece. No I’m not at all encouraging churning out post after post at the expense of quality.  However, it is in fact alright to write some posts with enormous attention to detail on all fronts while publishing others in which you have invested very little time, (purely to score brownie points off those Google bots who have a thing for regular posting).

 

9) Blogging Can Help You Find a Sense of Purpose

I love my kids but SAHM motherhood can make you lose yourself in a parenting wilderness of permanently sticky floors and endless birthday parties.  Launching AbPrab helped me find a huge part of me again that had somehow got lost along the way with all the nappy changing, packed lunches and homework. It has also ignited in me a dream I never knew I actually had…to write for newspapers or magazines or I don’t know SOMETHING that I’d never ever have thought to do if it weren’t for AbPrab.

 

10) Your Blog Goals Can Change and That is Just Fine.

I can’t imagine there are many bloggers whose outlook hasn’t slightly shifted or indeed fully metamorphosed since they started out.  I’m mulling over my own goals a fair bit at present and I may change my mind next week (I’m a Pisces after all) but I think I’m leaning away from heavy monetisation of my blogette. I’ll still carry on deriving some income from it but I think I may instead pursue paid content writing.

 

11) Getting on the HuffPost is Nice for Your Media Kit but…That’s About It.

I hesitated to include this as I don’t want to burst anyone’s bubble.  I see posts from ecstatic bloggers excitedly announcing they’ve got on to the Huff – and yes I did that too and I’ll be honest there is still something nice about seeing my name and bio under that hallowed Huff header – but sadly, it is well documented that it does nothing to drive traffic to one’s site. I guess the exception might be if they feature you on their front page as a pick of the day/week.  Once I realised that was the case for me, I stopped contributing regularly and just picked the occasional post to send to them. I then decided to submit more often when I remembered I do get the benefit of the powerful Huff backlink which helps DA score. Except guess what?  Rumour has it this is no longer the case because of changes made to the HuffPost platform and follow link policy.  No more link juice baby.

 

12) Blogging Gives You a Legitimate Excuse to Make Friends Online Without Feeling like a Weirdo!

And if you’re a blogger you don’t need me to explain that one. At. All.  Seriously, the camaraderie I am blessed to have with Cuddle Fairy, Island Living 365, Just Saying Mum, Life Love and Dirty Dishes, Life with Baby Kicks, Mum Muddling Through, Motherhood the Real Deal and Mess Stress and Fancy Dress some of whom I speak to often, many of whom I go to with blog queries and all of whom make me laugh.  Then there are those friendships with those I don’t speak to as regularly but adore such as Beauty Baby & Me (Fi is so good for my ego!), Mess and Merlot (Charlie = total honey), Mumbelievable (sickenly beautiful with the coolest blog name to boot), Muma on the Edge and This Mum’s Life both of whom are riotously funny. I can’t possibly name everyone but I am so grateful for all my blog mates.  And yes, I’m fully aware that Google isn’t going to like me link-packing this paragraph but sometimes you’ve just got to give your friends a shout out. #rebel

 

13) Blog Success is Subjective (and some of it is smoke and mirrors)

Crazy monthly traffic?  Collabs with amazing brands?  High engagement? Awards?  High Klout/Tots scores?  A DA above 40?  We all see blog success differently.  And sometimes all is not what it may seem.  None of us really knows what is going on behind the scene screen with a blogger. I’ve been lucky (and totally bemused I might add) to be described in high terms by my fellow bloggers and often go to cafes/ladies’ nights out and meet total strangers who recognise me and talk effusively about the blog. I’m taken aback and think really?  But I’m not earning large, I’m not working with a huge amount of brands, my DA is in the respectable bracket but not high high.  Meanwhile other bloggers look at me (I”m told) in terms of the award and other finalist place or the not too shabby looking blog design or…or…whatever it is that makes them think I’m in some blog super league because honestly I’ve no idea what they’re looking at!!  Ultimately I’m too close to it anyway but I’m convinced it’s all relative and what one perceives as a successful blog can just be a case of smoke and mirrors.

 

14) Do What Suits YOU First Because Nobody’s Paying as Much Attention to Your Blog as You Are.

I know. GASP!  It’s truuuuuuue.  (Well alright not if you’re a super uber mega league blogger whose every post people are hanging on for.)  I’m not being unkind; I just mean when we are too close to something, we think everyone notices what we see.  Fact is, unless you’re on an official deadline (linky hosting, guest posting or publishing a sponsored post) nobody will even notice if you don’t publish that post today, or tweet 30 times on Wednesday or Instagram the hell out of your whole week.  And if they notice, they’re hardly going to hold it against you.  Fair enough, I’ve been caught out by subscribers wondering if they missed an email from me (mental note to self, send out next email to my subscriber list).  I freely admit, I need to take my own advice here as I get into the flow writing and stay up blogging when I should just go the hell to bed or shut the laptop and hug my kids on the sofa in front of a film already! But I’ve become aware of it and am working on it.

When all is said done, you just have to do what works for you, your family, your sanity…  As Louise of Squished Blueberries put it so eloquently in her fab post Some Thoughts about Life and Blogging

I will never write a post because I feel like I should, because everyone else is writing those kind of posts, because I think it’s what other people want to read, because people might search for it on google, or because someone has given me a free pack of ham.

 

 

15) Fight Your Fear and Do Things You Didn’t Think You’d Ever Do

Vlogging is my big one.  Seriously, if I can put my aversion to seeing and hearing myself to one side, then anyone can!

Oh…looky look..talking of vlogging…

 

 

I know I’ll remember ten more things tomorrow but I bashed this post out super fast as I’m trying not to over think all my posts to death!  The other reason is that it’s now time for my linky with Becky to go live, I need to talk to another blogger regarding something and I still haven’t made dinner and my kids are starving.  (And tonight’s delectation is baked beans on toast because Mum’s been too busy blogging…what was that about balance?)

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The Life You Have is a Dream

the-life-you-live-is-a-dream-featured

I do apologise for the rather bleak picture and the solemn quote (don’t worry…I’ll lighten the mood next week!) but…the fact is this is reality for many people so I didn’t want to put up a ‘diluted’ picture.

When Do You Have Enough?

I’m bashing out this post after an eye-opening thought-provoking moment that has just occurred in my kitchen, on a Monday afternoon as my eldest does her homework, the other two play upstairs having finished theirs and the dinner is simmering away.  I was due to go to the supermarket after the school run to do the weekly grocery shop having not done it this morning, as I decided to blog, and we desperately need food as the cupboards are bare and there is hardly anything in the fridge or freezer.

Well I Thought We Didn’t Have Enough Food Or so I thought.  More on that in a sec.

I mean there is more empty shelving than actual food in the fridge, the ‘carbs cupboard’ only has half a loaf of bread, a Ryvita packet and some Maltese galetti (sort of like water biscuits), the storecupboard cabinet (canned food, pasta, grains, lentils, pulses) has visible spaces on the shelf and the snacks cupboard is definitely running low.  So basically we have hardly anything left.  (This always reminds me of a good friend during my London days; she used to describe the food situation in her house as rain or shine.)

Yet, despite the apparent tragic impoverished circumstances of my kitchen,

me being me (ie a legendary procastinator) I just could not summon up the energy and will to spend the required hour and a half driving to the shop, doing all the shopping, queuing up, paying, hauling it to the car, driving back and offloading it all.  Yep, housewife of the year.  Obviously I’ll have to buck up and do it tomorrow.  I was desperate not to go the supermarket which would mean leaving the kids alone and  delaying dinner (and a blog deadline) so I looked again at that sad-looking fridge and opened the forlorn cupboards again. I walked back over to the fridge and looked at it again, (maybe I thought if I stared hard enough, I’d realise my eyes had in fact been deceiving me and food had been there all along).

That’s When the Eye-Opener Happened

I wondered whether I did in fact have enough to get through this evening (thankfully dinner was already taken care of), the following morning’s breakfast, not to mention the kids packed lunches and my own lunch and possibly even dinner.  You KNOW what I’m going to say don’t you?  Yes I did.  In fact, I had enough to put together – wait for it – 9 meals.  Yes NINE!  I’d gone from famine to feast in just a few minutes without leaving my house!  And in that moment, as I reassessed my formerly ‘disastrously understocked’ fridge, I actually felt a bit ashamed and realised I really am a product of my generation, a generation that has – maybe unintentionally – developed a greedy mentality through having grown up in the comfort and affluence of the West. A generation often unable to recognise when we have enough…more than we need in fact.  Our vision has become so skewed.

Now, I don’t think I’m a ‘greedy person’ by any stretch of the imagination;

far from it actually.   I’m generally content with little…more of a ‘want what you have, not have what you want’ sort of person.   So I have to ask, if I’m such a glass half full rather than half empty type, (and yes I suppose I could have used that quote in this post!) then why on earth do I not see my kitchen as half full, not half empty?!  Why do we see problems when really there isn’t one?  Of course, I could extrapolate to so many other areas of life but I think you get me.

 

Now I know 100 people could read this post and each of those 100 people would have a different financial status; some perhaps very well off, some in the middle and others prone to struggling their whole life to make ends meet.  And yes, life really has become expensive.  But that’s just it.  Whilst property prices, the cost of a meal in that fancy restaurant and various forms of taxation have indeed risen since we were all children, the fact is we in this society are propagating this belief that life is expensive left, right and centre.  When actually, maybe just maybe (this is my theory) It’s really only as expensive as we want to make it?  If we think we need that shiny new car, summer holiday, dream house, weekend get away, buzzing social life, this season’s trendy clothing, the coolest gadgets etc in the belief that these are all ‘must-haves’ crucial to our happiness, then yes our life will probably be one destined for great expense.

the-life-you-live

This central message exists in many different forms.  

You’ll probably have seen memes about being richer than most people in the world if you have food in your fridge, clothes on your body and a roof over your head.  I honestly believe in this so much.  I’m sure I drive my kids mad with the whole ‘no you can’t have the blue plate because there’s nothing wrong with the red one you have because you’re just damned lucky to have food on any plate in the first place!’ sermon, delivered from time to time.

So, I have to say, harsh as the picture for this post is, the message is so very true and apt.

Now more than ever.


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The Quotes Linky Candid Cuddles 59

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Welcome to Candid Cuddles 59 with Cuddle Fairy and myself!  

Thanks so much to those of you who linked last week; how lovely to have your support as Becky and I gave the linky its first Autumn outing.  In case you missed it, I now co-host this lovely quotes linky which relaunched last week after the summer break.  The Candid Cuddles linky now runs every Monday evening.  I think it’s a great way to set yourself up properly for the week ahead because of the inspiring, motivational, thought-provoking or just downright funny words that people share!  Now here we are at Candid Cuddles 59.

 

The Candid Cuddles quote linky is about being creative, sharing a message/personal insight. Posts with any type of quote are welcome to link up.

The quote can be typed or a graphic. The quote can be inspirational, motivational, funny, sarcastic or anything else you like.  If you are new to Candid Cuddles & need any help linking up, you can read Becky’s Linky Guide or tweet either of us at @AbPrabulous / @CuddleFairy.

 

My Favourite Post of Last Week

came from the lovely Annette of 3 Little Buttons who is also Becky’s fave too.  Her post about how Blogging is Like Sailing on the Ocean honestly blew me away and I don’t know how to adequately describe how much this post resonated with me.  i’m sure many people can relate to Annette’s view of blogging; the highs, the lows, the rewards, the relationships, the everything.  The line about little dinghy’s and established battle ships…oh my goodness…writing heaven.  I do so love Annette’s writing style the more I read her.

I’d also like to tip my hat to another post that got under my skin which was the intense account of a wedding day gone horribly wrong by Petite Library.  By the time I finished reading this post, I almost needed to pour myself a stiff drink (alright I admit I don’t usually need much of an excuse) as the words she uses are filled with such emotion and she does such a great job of taking the reader with her (well this reader for sure anyway) describing how this most important of days simply disintegrated in the worst way.

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Candid Cuddles 59: When/Where/How!

* Will be open from Monday 7:00pm – Wednesday 7:00pm GMT.

* Every linked post gets a comment from a host & a RT from both of us.

* Pin your quote graphics to the Candid Cuddles Pinterest board. Contact  to be added to the board.

* Becky and I will each pick our favourites to feature on our blogs each week.

The Rules:

1. Add our badge to the HTML / text portion of your post or a back link to cuddlefairy.com or absolutelyprabulous.com

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2. Link your post via the inklinkz button bottom left of this post.

3. Please comment on both Host Posts, the post directly before yours & one more of your choice.  Feel free to comment on more than that, but please do those 4 as a minimum.

4. Pinterest Board Rules: Pin one quote per week to the board. The quote pinned must be linked up here.

5. After you link up, tag us for a retweet: @CuddleFairy @AbPrabulous.
Be sure to include the hashtag #candidcuddles.

(I don’t want to list this is an actual rule but if you’d like to follow me on my various social media, if not already, then I won’t stop you!  You can find me on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

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So…if you have a quote, inspiring words, a funny saying etc that strikes a chord with you, we’d love it if you shared it with us here on Candid Cuddles 58.

We look forward to reading your posts! xx


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Word! Whether You Think You Can or Think You Can’t, You’re Right

think you can ford

When I first came across this memorable line by the famously respected businessman and automotive genius (not to mention the controlling egocentric) Henry Ford, it was like an enormous megawatt light bulb had just been switched on in my brain.

I don’t remember where or when I first saw it although I don’t think it was that many years ago.  What I do know is that I was so blown away by this philosophy that I absolutely had to feature it in 40 Life Lessons for my Kids.  I would love to write something insightful and profound to explain how/why it was such a personal epiphany because I think it is an amazing quote that deserves at least that.  But I’m not sure I can actually do it justice…which I guess reflects what Ford said!  So I guess I’d best try.

There is a common question; nature or nurture regarding the personalities we all have.  I believe that we’re a combination of both.

I think we are a product of the circumstances of our upbringing but also have our own inherent character.  I honestly don’t think you can separate the two.  Why do I mention this?  I think the reason that this quote was almost like an arrow between my eyes was because I grew up with a tendency towards negative thought and very little self confidence, due my  environment, which doesn’t need elaborating on here as this is all about the positive.  Suffice to say, it genuinely hadn’t dawned on me most of my life that one’s ability to achieve or competence at anything or chance of success is largely down to one’s own thought patterns.  It’s not as simplistic as convincing oneself one could make themselves invisible or fly unaided to the moon… But really in many cases, if you think you can or think you can’t, you’re probably right.   So if you really do think you can pass that exam, write that book, jump out of that plane, learn that language…then chances are you jolly well can.  And will.  Conversely if you think you can’t…well it probably won’t happen for you.  This actually makes me think of what Angela said in her post on last week’s Candid Cuddles last week.

I only became aware that I had a tendency to self sabotage (I say ‘had’ because I do think I’ve  improved a lot!) when my husband pointed it out to me not long after we met.  He realised much of my behaviour/way of thinking was down to my conditioning (we all have conditioning, it’s not unique to me) and I don’t know how many hours we spent chatting over this phenomena in the early days of getting to know one another.  So it’s not that surprising that one of Ford’s most known remarks struck me, in light of this ‘self realisation’.  It just explained so much and I could literally pinpoint specific areas of my life where I’d either talked myself out of or indeed succeeded at something.

Now that I am a parent, I honestly believe it is one of the most profound and important lessons we can pass on to our children.  

My two girls couldn’t be more different in their way of thinking.  The eldest will give up at the slightest hurdle and thinks everything is difficult and impossible from simply opening a packet of food to running a marathon and everything in between.  Bizarrely, this same child has total belief however in my abilities and wasn’t at all surprised when I won my BiBs award because she ‘knew’ I was going to (her words) and in fact was in shock when I didn’t win the MADs one (apparently when Hubster told her, she was floored and asked to see my whatsapp message herself, such was her belief in me!).  The younger one is fiercely independent and doesn’t like help unless she’s tried all avenues herself.  My son is somewhere in the middle I guess.  They’ve all grown up in the same household, same environment and in this case it’s their individual personalities that shapes their belief of whether they can or can’t do something.

Nature or nurture, it doesn’t matter, I just want them to apply themselves to whatever they do…

…be it a simple recreational drawing, a competitive sports activity or something extremely significant.  I do try to remind my eldest of this when she looks defeated by just looking at her maths homework   I need them to really truly understand:

that if they think they can or think they can’t, they’re right either way.

Then I’ll have partly done my job.

And Henry might look down and smile.

 

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BEFORE YOU LEAVE…DO YOU KNOW MALTA WELL? WHAT WOULD BE ON YOUR LIST OF CRAZY THINGS ABOUT ISLAND?

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40 Life Lessons For My Kids (I Wish I’d Known as a Kid)

Dear Musical M, Dreamy D and Cheeky K

I’ve wanted to write something like this for a while but I put it on the backburner. Let’s face it, I’m probably the least qualified person to teach you valuable life lessons apart from stuff like:

– don’t lick that
– If you think it’s the wrong hole, it probably is
– there are few problems in life that a massive chocolate sundae with marshmallows and extra chocolatey sauce and some of those multicoloured thingies can’t fix (mainly because you’d be so sick after one of those that you’d forget your problems for a bit).

Seriously though, goodness only knows, I’ve only managed to implement half of the following list in my own life, so I hope you have more success than me. I know I’m meant to lead by example (honestly I do actually try) but in this case:

It’s do as mummy says, not as mummy does!

Most of it is serious but you know my cheeky ways…some of it is not. I just hope I’m raising you well enough to tell the difference between the two.

40-life-lessons-for-my-kids
1)  I’m going to start with one of my mantras: Be happy with what you have. Don’t spend so much time chasing what you don’t have that you don’t appreciate what’s right in front of you. I want you to be comfortable (more than) and not struggle.  Just don’t rely on material wealth to make you happy because that’s just the path to misery, my loves! And even if we struggle, there is still someone far FAR worse off than us.

if-you-have-food-infographic-web-version

2) Remember the importance of healthy eating…but don’t forget that a life without cake is…well…pretty rubbish really!

3) It takes all sorts of people to make the world go round and I’m not going to tell you that we are all the same because that’s just Utopian nonsense.  But we ARE all originally made of the same stuff….even if we turn out very differently. So try to respect other people’s opinions no matter how hard you may find it. Obvious exceptions to the rule:
racist twunts, homophobes, anyone who doesn’t like U2 or Michael Jackson.

4) Find wonder in the small things. Cry, laugh, feel. It doesn’t make you an emotional sop, it makes you human. It makes you my child. If someone ridicules you for it, it’s alright…they’re just not ‘connected’ like you. Their loss.

5) Have fun. LOTS OF FUN. Because life is too damned short not to.

life-is-short

6) Stand up for yourself…but pick your battles wisely (and for heaven’s sake know when to just shut the hell up).

7) If any of you think/realise you’re gay, tell me and your father. We’ll never turn it into a problem or turn you away. Ever.

8) Travel as much as you can, try your best to stay safe, do some stupid shit too and purleese remember: spare me the details you can tell me anything.

Mark-Twain-Quotes-Twenty-Years-From-Now-9

9) If you find love, cherish it, never take your partner for granted and respect them. If it turns out your partner doesn’t deserve your respect…don’t be afraid to walk away no matter how awful that option may seem at the time.

10) It’s important to follow the rules…and know which ones to break…

break the rules
11) Never stop listening to music. Ever. You hear me?

12) When things go wrong, try not to search for a reason. I honestly believe things (well most things) during even the toughest of times happen for a reason.

Sometimes-when-things-are-falling-apart-they-may-actually-be-falling-into-place.

 

13) Find your passion and follow it. I’m not going to tell you that as long as you follow your passion, the money required to survive in life will automatically come, but at least find a passion!

14) Look people in the eye when you speak to them. Listen to them; I mean really listen to them. SMILE. Say ‘pardon’ or ‘excuse me, not ‘what’. I know you already say please and thank you and sorry. Don’t ever stop. Humility isn’t old fashioned. Manners matter.

treat-people-the-way-you-want-to-be-treated-talk-to-people-the-way-you-want-to-be-talked-to-respect-13896273454g8nk
15) Don’t be hard on yourself. I’ve spent years doing just that. It’s such a waste of energy and doesn’t get you anywhere except down. And comparing yourself to others is just as pointless. Just be the best version of you and that’s enough.

16) Surround yourself with people who bring out the best in you.

17) Try not to lash out; it’s so easy to do (guilty as charged) but does no good in the end:

how-you-made-someone-feel

(there again some people just need to be put in their place but you never heard that from me…)

18) Compete against yourself, not against others. This world of ours is becoming obsessed with winners and losers…don’t get caught up in that ugliness. Your only competition is the one looking back at you from the mirror.

be-better-than-yourself
19) Daughters, be tough, be brave, speak up, date whoever you want to date but always be classy. “Less is more” doesn’t mean the less you’re wearing, the more good you look. Know that understated elegance is absolute dynamite; never underestimate the impact of covering up the right bits. Don’t ever EVER let someone make you believe you can’t do something because you’re ‘just’ a girl. Do everything because you ARE a girl. Oh and did I mention, be classy?

20) Son, don’t be a tool: If you’re not going to call or text her, for Heaven’s sake, don’t take her number in the first place. Know that females are not inferior to you so be careful how you inwardly view them, outwardly treat them and talk about them to your friends. And let’s just clarify something here: not holding the door open for a woman doesn’t mean you’re respecting equality; it means you’re just rude (and I didn’t do my job right). Be a gentleman. Always. If I catch you mistreating a woman, so help me God…

21) “I can’t” is no way to speak or think. Be fluent in “I can”. Don’t just give up at the first hurdle in a situation.

think you can ford
22) Have at least two items of clothing that make you feel absolutely amazing as soon as you put them; but remember none of that’s important if you can’t remember to brush your hair or wash your face before you leave the house.

23) You will meet some nasty people throughout life who will talk behind your back or be downright rude to your face and you won’t understand why they are like that. You can’t do much about them but you can change the way you react. Above all, don’t let their behaviour dictate how you live your life and just remember: if they’re trying to bring you down, they’re already below you.

how-people-treat-you

 

24) It’s not always me, me, me. Why? Voilà:

if-you-live-your-life-as-if-everything-is-about-you

 

25) It needs to be us, us, us. You’re part of the world around you so don’t think that something isn’t your problem if you know you can help (from helping that old lady who’s just dropped her shopping bag to actual causes). Give back if you genuinely can, live responsibly…just be decent.

1308-Mahatma-Gandhi-Quote-Be-the-change-that-you-wish-to-see-in-the

26) Defend your family and friends. If someone talks ill of them or mistreats them, do something about it.

27) Trust your gut. If it doesn’t feel right, it probably definitely isn’t. If it feels right, go go GO with it

28) When you are suffering hardship or heartache, remember nothing lasts forever.

darkest day

29) This is the holy grail: Never judge someone til you’ve walked a mile in their shoes, as the saying goes. It’s really hard. But just don’t.

30) When you’re too old for me to tuck you in at night, or I’m no longer around to do “Favourite part of the day”, please still do it, even silently to yourself as you drift off to sleep. Even on the darkest of days, we can usually find something that was worth remembering. Deal?

31) Be kind even when the other person isn’t giving you much reason to be.

be-kind
32) Don’t spend so much time looking back with nostalgia/regret you don’t focus enough on looking forward (besides…I do that enough for all of us…).

33) THIS!

watch-your-words

34) Always read the instructions.

35) Be accountable for your mistakes. Don’t try to pass the blame on to someone else.

36) Put your best effort into everything you do. You just let yourself down when you don’t. But recognise that sometimes a half-baked plan implemented today is better than a perfect plan implemented tomorrow (a wise man told me that…your father).

37) Listen to your mother! (Except for when she’s talking crap.)

38) If you drop it, pick it up. If you switch it on, turn it off. You’re never too important to clear up after yourself.

39) Be happy for other peoples’ success. Genuinely. Jealousy is poisonous.

40) I guess when all is said and done, it comes down to this:

744-Mae-West-Quote-You-only-live-once-but-if-you-do-it-right-once-is
Oh and I almost forgot:

– don’t lick that
– If you think it’s the wrong hole, it probably is
– there are few problems in life that a massive chocolate sundae with marshmallows and extra chocolatey sauce and some of those multicoloured thingies can’t fix (mainly because you’d be so sick after one of those that you’d forget your problems for a bit).

(I lied about 40…)

C’est tout.

What life lessons would you pass on? I’d love to know in the comments box below.

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