Tons of stuff is available that offers advice and opinion for everything imaginable; like how to make the perfect omelet, to how to experience the perfect orgasm. Now it’s my turn at bat. My focus is on men, although it also could be useful for the ladies.
#1 – Save your money. This advice was given to me at age thirteen and still is valid today.
#2 – Pay cash for everything that you possibly can and credit cards just for emergencies. When the bill comes due, pay it and live debt free (see number one).
#3 – Be aware of the expiration date of that condom you carry in your wallet (or ladies, your purse). STDs’ and unwanted pregnancies can be prevented. Think with the head on your neck; not the one hanging between your legs.
#4 – Know when to fight and know when to run. Be willing to stand up for yourself, your family, and your convictions. Understand that you will not win all the battles; life is a marathon, not a 100 yard dash. When you go to sleep at night, remember that tomorrow is another day that offers more opportunities.
#5 – Always seek knowledge and be willing to learn something new every day. Wisdom is attained by acquiring knowledge and putting it to use in your life. This is called experience; it is knowledge applied to action. The examination of experience then, yields wisdom. Learn from your experiences. Constantly make efforts to improve yourself. Learn some basic carpentry, plumbing, and electrical skills. As you increase knowledge and ability in those fields, you can save money be doing some things by yourself. Also, you will have the feeling of self-worth and accomplishment. Read, study, and learn all that you can. Never pass up an opportunity to learn something new. Use your head for more than a hat rack.
#6 – Keep your own counsel – always. We all do dumb things that we are ashamed of. Learn from those things (see #5). When you vent your angst about some silly thing that you have done, be wary of whom you tell. People love gossip, especially that which can be used against another.
#7 – Be generous with your time, talent, and wealth, especially to your family.
#8 – Be yourself and think for yourself; after all, you are an individual. Do not develop the “herd mentality.” If you let someone or something control your life, you will live to regret it. Be good to yourself. There are plenty of people out there who take great pleasure in tearing others down (or, at least try to – see #6).
#9 – Always respect women. Remember, your Mommy is/was a woman.
#10 - Take charge of your life by taking responsibility for your words and deeds. Stop blaming other people and your parents for your personal failures. Always conduct your affairs responsibly. Speak nobly and truthfully. If you have erred, admit the error and make the correction. One or two misspoken words can cause as much damage as a bullet.
#11 – Honor all life, and dare to feel the connectedness of THE ALL. Dare to see the sacred in all things. Put your hands in the dirt. Plant a fruit tree or two and some vegetables for the pleasure that you will experience when you eat your own produce; there is nothing like that home grown taste.
#12 – Live a healthy lifestyle. Exercise, eat, and sleep like your life depends on it; because it does! Do not smoke; if you do, quit. Smoking affects your heart, lungs, and circulatory system. Develop a daily meditation routine; a rich, inner spiritual life is a wonderful thing.
*Some of the above comes from my book, Beneath Valhalla – Opinions of an Iconoclast, copyright @2009 Terry Unger. Additions, copyright @2012 Terry Unger