41 and 10
So in the past month 2 milestones in my life have occurred. The first being that I turned 41 in March and yesterday I celebrated 10 years of employment in my current job. Both are fairly significant to me – I can’t believe I am 41. I certainly don’t look and feel that old and this is the longest job I have ever held in my life thus far.
Back in March I was going to write something cliché about being 41 and come up with 41 things that I had learned or defined my life. I got about halfway through it and decided it wasn’t worth posting. This post on the other hand is much deeper and now that I am 41 I have much more wisdom to share. By the way I think sarcasm is one of my top gifts in life, in case you didn’t know.
In my time I have learned some valuable life lessons that I think are important and worth sharing
Relationships matter and are one of the main keys to having a good life. Investing in others, looking past their mistakes, flaws and appearances and getting to know another person is something I work hard to do in all situations. I love culture and diversity and want to surround myself with that at all times.
Being a parent will bring you face to face with how little you actually know as well as help you see areas of your own life that don’t match up with what you’re asking your kids to do. Obedience and self-control have been the two that I have struggled with the most as a parent. The answers I once believed I had don’t come easily and often have to be changed or adjusted to fit the situation and each individual child.
Thank God for music. There’s never been a day in my life where a song or four didn’t greatly improve my mood. Music is something I can’t go very long without having on. I’m thankful for the advances in technology and the ability to make my own playlists and create a soundtrack to my life. Coming from a sheltered life of old school country music (which I still love) to discovering new artists in most genres I have a great love and appreciation for music. My favorites include RnB, Southern Gospel and 80’s – how’s that for eclectic.
If you don’t practice caring for yourself (mental, physical and emotional) by taking time out to just rest and relax, you will burn out and not be of any good to anyone else. I still don’t do very good at this, but I am learning I need to. God gave us a Sabbath for a reason.
My journey of faith is at a place where I never imagined it would be. My cookie cutter life that I once dreamed of has been completely shaped and transformed as I have trusted in God to walk through life. I’ve experienced God in a very real way too many times to doubt his existence. It’s in this that I continue to get up each day and hope for a better tomorrow. I hope as I continue on my journey others will see me reflecting Jesus more than they see me.
Being a real leader, means serving the needs of those around you. Never doing anything you aren’t willing to do yourself. Leading others is a gift and not everyone can do it. If you don’t prove yourself, have a direction and vision, no one is ever going to follow you. Authentic leaders value those they work with and treat them the same way they want to be treated.
Find something to say that is nice, builds others up and makes them feel good. Words are impactful. We have the ability to say things in a way in which it can be received without destroying another person.
We have choices in all that we do. We get to make the choice of how we approach any given situation. We can choose the attitude in which we approach it. Even the worst possible circumstances can be changed by our attitude.
The role of the father in the family is pivotal. He will teach his daughters what they can expect from men as well as teach his son what it means to be a man. When the father decides to leave, check out or is gone, it does damage for years. Fathering is one of the hardest and yet most rewarding jobs there is, but one that should never be taken for granted.
I never want to be a place in my life and settle and just say this is all there is. This is the best if can be. I live in the tension of being content with how my life is and always wanting to explore other options. Living on less and not having all the things of this world, brings me a lot more happiness, but I still want more from life.
So there’s my wisdom to share. As of late I have come to the realization that life is indeed a journey. It’s not something we can sprint through. Slow down, take a breath, observe and engage the world in which we live. Time passes quickly and we spend a lot of our time living in our memories. I’d rather those memories were filled with the good stuff opposed to regrets, fears or anger.
So is there anything you think I need to know for the rest of my journey?