“Build friendships with people who make you a better person”

From a articled titled Best Advice For Men  but certainly applies to both genders…

“Build friendships with people who make you a better person.  Hang out with people that bring out your best.  You don’t need to abandon your old friends like everyone else tells you to.  Just realize that maybe you need to alter those relationships a little bit in order to make room for people that are bringing out the best in you.  If you’re lucky, your old friends are already doing that.”

“Take too many pictures, laugh too much, and love like you’ve never been hurt because every sixty seconds you spend upset is a minute of happiness you’ll never get back”

I can’t find the source of this quote but I’m still looking. Full quote …

“As we grow up, we learn that even the one person that wasn’t supposed to ever let you down probably will. You will have your heart broken probably more than once and it’s harder every time. You’ll break hearts too, so remember how it felt when yours was broken.

You’ll fight with your best friend. You’ll blame a new love for things an old one did. You’ll cry because time is passing too fast, and you’ll eventually lose someone you love.

So take too many pictures, laugh too much, and love like you’ve never been hurt because every sixty seconds you spend upset is a minute of happiness you’ll never get back. Don’t be afraid that your life will end, be afraid that it will never begin.”

“Underpromise and overdeliver”

From one of the best business minds ever … Tom Peters. I’m a huge fan of Tom Peters but I never have followed this advice. Not because I don’t trust or admire his judgement – but because I’m bored by the notion of “underpromising”.

The  “Underpromise and overdeliver” principle suggests it’s better not to promise something to your customer that you cannot keep than to under promise and to surprise your customer with good service.

I’ll admit, I’m torn on this advice but I tend to agree with this post by Chris Reaburn Service Rant: Underpromise, Overdeliver …

“Underpromise / overdeliver originated as a way for managers to advise their reports to manage expectations as an internal CYA, ensuring neither they nor their bosses would ever have to face the embarrassment of a missed commitment – a self-protective, “how to fulfill what is asked without failing / casting a negative light on our silo.”

The problem is that the first part of the equation gets fulfilled. Under committing is easy – it just means that you don’t promise to do as much as you know you’re capable of. But faced with someone not complaining about the level of care they receive, they forget to over deliver. Conserve resources. Get satisfied (lazy) delivering what is “good enough”. Ride the self-created perception of satisfaction rather than putting forth the extra effort to delight & surpass what the customer is expecting.”

Link to  post …

“Rule 4 of Work: Carve Out a Niche For Yourself”

By Richard Templar Rule 4 of Work: Carve Out a Niche For Yourself  and appeared in the Financial Times …

“The easiest way to get noticed at work (at least in the positive sense) is to find some specific way in which you are uniquely talented and use it to your advantage. Exceptional ability in a specific area will help you stand out more to the people who can promote you.”

“Carving out a niche means spotting a useful area that no one else has spotted. It might be as simple as being great at spreadsheets or report writing. It might be, like Mike, knowing something no one else does. It might be being brilliant with scheduling or budgets or understanding the system.”

Link to article …

“Don’t let someone become a priority in your life when you are just an option in theirs”

From the 7 Golden Rules of Life. The 1st rule …

“Don’t let someone become a priority in your life, when you are just an option in their life. Relationships work best when they are balanced.” 

The 4th rule …
“When we wake up in the morning, we have two simple choices.
Go back to sleep and dream, or wake up and chase those dreams.
Choice is yours.”

List of all 7 rules

“Tell me and I’ll forget; show me and I may remember; involve me and I’ll understand”

The above quote is a chinese proverb. Its been widely accepted – we absorb information best by using multiple senses. Make your impressions visual, verbal and auditory. I was not able to verify this study but there are several references to a study done at the University of Texas that found that people remember (Metcalf 1997):

10 percent of what they read;

20 percent of what they hear;

30 percent of what they see;

50 percent of what they see and hear;

70 percent of what they say; and

90 percent of what they do and say

“Avoiding family poverty requires three things: 1) finish high-school, 2) marry before having children and 3) marry after the age of 20”

Former Clinton domestic policy advisor Bill Galston … “avoiding family poverty requires three things:

  1. finish high-school,
  2. marry before having children and
  3. marry after the age of 20.

Only 8 percent of families who do this are poor, while 79 percent of those who fail to do this are poor.”

“To excel at something, immerse yourself”

From an informative post called 12 pieces of the best advice about money, life, and business

“Dabbling in somethings doesn’t make you an expert. In order to become truly great at something, you have to live, breath, think, and dream it. Find every book you can read about the subject, start doing what they say, and teach others about it. You retain the highest percentage of what you learn when you share it with others.”

“Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass, it’s learning to dance in the rain”

“It’s not what happens to you that matters most, but it’s how you react to what happens that does.”

“The happiest of people don’t necessarily have the best of everything they just make the most of everything that comes along their way.”

Four inspirational quotes with a similar message. Unfortunately, we were only able to identify the source of the last quote. From Josh Billings …

“Life consists by in not holding good cards but in playing those you hold well”

“And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance: I hope you dance”

Lyrics to the song “I Hope You Dance” by Leann Womack …

I hope you never lose your sense of wonder
You get your fill to eat
But always keep that hunger
May you never take one single breath for granted
God forbid love ever leave you empty handed
I hope you still feel small
When you stand by the ocean
Whenever one door closes, I hope one more opens
Promise me you’ll give fate a fighting chance

And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance
I hope you dance

I hope you never fear those mountains in the distance
Never settle for the path of least resistance
Living might mean taking chances
But they’re worth taking
Lovin’ might be a mistake
But it’s worth making
Don’t let some hell bent heart
Leave you bitter
When you come close to selling out
Reconsider
Give the heavens above
More than just a passing glance

And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance
I hope you dance

“The most important thing to get right when selecting a job is how quickly the company is growing”

Career advice from Eric Schmidt, Google’s CEO …

“The most important thing to get right when selecting a job is how quickly the company is growing. Growth creates numerous opportunities for anyone who is contributing to the company’s success, whereas when companies stop growing, the careers of everyone, including very talented people, face severe challenges.”

…learn to master the skills that will allow you to work anywhere”

Debbe Kennedy, President and Founder of Global Dialogue Center and Leadership Solutions Companies, one of her colleagues offered this advice.

“He mentioned that jobs, missions, titles, and organizations would come and go. He advised her not to focus her goals toward any of these, but instead learn to master the skills that will allow you to work anywhere. He was talking about four skills:

1. The ability to develop an idea.
2. Effectively plan for its implementation.
3. Execute second-to-none.
4. Achieve superior results time after time.

So, forget what others do; work to be known for delivering excellence. It speaks for itself and it opens doors.”

“… there is no power on earth like unconditional love. And I think that if you offered that to your child, I mean, you’re 90 percent of the way home”

The best advice Warren Buffet ever received.

From an exclusive interview with Yahoo! News and the Huffington Post. Warren Buffet credits his father with teaching him how to live, and explained that all parents can make a “better human being”:

“The power of unconditional love. I mean, there is no power on earth like unconditional love. And I think that if you offered that to your child, I mean, you’re 90 percent of the way home. There may be days when you don’t feel like it — it’s not uncritical love; that’s a different animal — but to know you can always come back, that is huge in life. That takes you a long, long way. And I would say that every parent out there that can extend that to their child at an early age, it’s going to make for a better human being.”

“It’s true that we don’t know what we’ve got until we lose it, but it’s also true that we don’t know what we’ve been missing until it arrives.”

The first time I read this quote I thought of my wife. I enjoyed my bachelor years but I didn’t know what I was missing until I met her. She has her faults – but she is a person of integrity, brilliant, loyal, honest, hard-working, strong, courageous, positive, determined, and we laugh a lot even when we’re doing nothing.

“Start by waking up every morning and asking yourself: What can I do to make my family better? What can I do today to introduce something positive into my child’s lives?”

This advice comes from the book Family First by Dr. Phil. He goes on to say in a later chapter …

“My family can enjoy a closer, more connected life together, sharing strength, with each person feeilng affirmed and feeling uplifted in life-changing ways. Mine can be a family that attains new levels of caring, encouragement and acceptance. My family will have opportunities to reach for the best and have the best. And most important, we leave no one behind.”

“When you choose the behavior you choose the consequences”

Often repeated quote by Dr. Phil. Interesting article by Linda Caillouet in the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette Dr. Phil says choices change lives …

 McGraw told his audience that the choices people make directly affect the life changes they experience, saying, “When you choose the behavior, you choose the consequences.” He then explained that the driving force behind the choices people make is something he calls personal truth.

“It’s what you believe about yourself when no one is looking or listening,” McGraw said. “We generate the results in this life that we believe we deserve.” So how can someone with an inadequate personal truth improve it? McGraw said that, instead of just “shuffling aimlessly through life,” individuals should look for and identify their Godgiven gifts and skills, develop passions and set personal goals and priorities.

“Children Learn What They Live”

The poem “Children Learn What They Live” by Dorothy Law Nolte and Rachel Harris …

If children live with criticism, they learn to condemn.
If children live with hostility, they learn to fight.
If children live with fear, they learn to be apprehensive.
If children live with pity, they learn to feel sorry for themselves.
If children live with ridicule, they learn to feel shy.
If children live with jealousy, they learn to feel envy.
If children live with shame, they learn to feel guilty.
If children live with encouragement, they learn confidence.
If children live with tolerance, they learn patience.
If children live with praise, they learn appreciation.
If children live with acceptance, they learn to love.
If children live with approval, they learn to like themselves.
If children live with recognition, they learn it is good to have a goal.
If children live with sharing, they learn generosity.
If children live with honesty, they learn truthfulness.
If children live with fairness, they learn justice.
If children live with kindness and consideration, they learn respect.
If children live with security, they learn to have faith in themselves and in those about them.
If children live with friendliness, they learn the world is a nice place in which to live.

Copyright © 1972 by Dorothy Law Nolte

“Don’t worry about the things you can’t control”

I’m guessing I heard this advice many times in my life but it was only in the last 5 years I started adhering to it.

This advice has helped at many times in my life and particularly with dealing with my own mortality. I no longer spend hours laying in bed in a cold sweat worrying about death. It’s ok to care about the things you can’t control, but if you can’t change them, don’t waste energy obsessing over them.

“Never marry a man who has no friends”

I read an interesting article a couple years ago by the NY Times Op-Ed columnist Maureen Dowd titled An Ideal Husband.

She credits Father Pat Connor, a 79-year-old Catholic priest born in Australia and based in Bordentown, N.J for this advice. The article includes the following quote …

“Never marry a man who has no friends,” he starts. “This usually means that he will be incapable of the intimacy that marriage demands. I am always amazed at the number of men I have counseled who have no friends.”

Later in the article he is quoted …

“Take a good, unsentimental look at his family — you’ll learn a lot about him and his attitude towards women. Kay made a monstrous mistake marrying Michael Corleone! Is there a history of divorce in the family? An atmosphere of racism, sexism or prejudice in his home? Are his goals and deepest beliefs worthy and similar to yours?”

“Don’t Depend on Someone Else to Make You Happy”

I didn’t receive alot of advice from my parents but I did get this one from my mother. For some reason, this one always stayed with me.

While researching this advice I found an interesting article titled Top Ten Things to Teach Your Daughter  written by Michelle Basile and published April 26th 2010. Michelle writes …

“A man enhances your life, not is your life: A mistake you see over and over again in young women is that they base their happiness on and around a man. A man should enhance your life, not become your life. Don’t depend on someone else to make you happy. Make yourself happy!”

This advice comes from emulzz …

“A real relationship happens when two people are happy with their lives as they are before they meet the other person, they don’t need someone else to be happy. And when these two independent people come together they realize that they may be happy alone, but this person gives them something to look forward to everyday of their life.”

“Love like you’ve never been hurt, Dance like no one’s watching, Sing like no-one’s listening, Live like there’s no tomorrow”

Again, there are many variations on this advice. We grouped these together because they all share a similar theme and tone.

This quote normally includes the phrase “Work like you don’t need the money”. Which sounds nice, but we don’t see the value of working like we don’t need the money? We like the positive message behind “Love like you’ve never been hurt”. The “Dance” & “Sing” parts are very similar and encourage stepping outside of our comfort zones. But the best piece of advice is “Live like there’s no tomorrow”.

“Find something you love doing and you’ll never work another day in your life.”

There are a couple variations on this but this advice clearly makes our “Life’s Best Advice” top ten. We’re not sure whom to credit but “Confucius” seems to be a popular choice on the internet.

We also like this related quote from Steve Jobs of Apple Computer …

“Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle.”

And one more from Eric A. Raymond with a slightly different spin …

“You can not motivate the best people with money. Money is just a way to keep score. The best people in any field are motivated by passion.”

“The essence of a happy life is found in the quality of our relationships!”

I spotted this quote in a tagline on the a blog called Relationships Matters hosted by Sonja Ridden. Sonja quotes Dr Phil in a post on her site with related advice …

“The quality of a relationship is a function of the extent to which it is built on a solid underlying friendship and meets the needs of the two people involved.”

“It’s amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit”

This quote is commonly attributed to Ronald Reagan (appearently Reagan had a sign on his desk in the Oval Office with this advice) but our research suggests Harry S Truman deserves the credit.

We also like this related advice from Indira Gandhi …

“My grandfather once told me that there were two kinds of people: those who do the work and those who take the credit. He told me to try to be in the first group; there was much less competition.”

Our take-away is … 1) focus on results and not recognition. 2) people around you are more likely to help you work toward your goals if they feel their efforts will be recognized in the end.