32 Life Lessons in 32 Years – Part 3
14. “Choose your battles – not everything is worth a fight”
Dr Gyles Morrison (my husband)
This is a profound statement, especially because Gyles mentioned it in the context of us having a disagreement about something seriously minor. I brought whatever it was up because I’m trying to be honest with my husband an all, but what I was actually doing was criticising the tiny and missing an opportunity to applaud the massive. By picking fights on things that are minor, you can slowly corrode the quality of your relationship and communication. This can then make people around you more defensive because they start expecting you to constantly criticize. It also takes away from dealing with real issues or actually celebrating the good.
15. “The cutting edge of love is consistency”
A friend of mine (I legit don’t remember who, sorry!) once said this to me and I couldn’t agree more. Love is not best displayed in grand gestures or romantic roller coasters. Instead, the everyday, consistent, little acts of service and sacrifice are the best reflection of love. The excitement in a relationship shouldn’t come from being unnerved by whether it is here today, gone tomorrow. No, the excitement should be in how we can build together, committed to each other. Mature love doesn’t do drama, it does steady. And steady is the best foundation to build legacy on. I was super intentional and intense in vetting who I wanted my husband to be, not letting butterflies and hormone spikes take the lead. Thank God, I am with someone who is as steady in his love as I am.
16. Sabbath rest is an underrated major key to success
I wrote a whole blog post about this lesson already, so I encourage you to read it here.
What I will say here as a reminder: make time to reflect on the still waters in your life and create and follow your personal road map to rest.
17. “In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock.”
I love this quote. It appeals both to one’s creative and moral side. There is no problem switching things up in your wardrobe, fridge, music collection or travel itinerary based on trends. And there is no need fighting with people about those, like what you like and leave them to like what they like. But there are certain things in our lives that should be timeless – faith, love, morality, truths. Those are the things that define us in our core. And they may require you to stand your ground at times and they may even cost you relationships, opportunities, jobs etc. But your integrity is worth more than your acceptance.
18. “The scope of our lives is determined by the substance of our days”
I first heard this quote listening to a sermon series on habit formation.
It absolutely rocked me as it so eloquently summarised something I had been learning about and observing for years: our habits make or break us.
What we do on a day to day is a much bigger indicator of who we become than one big event, whether positive or negative.
I enjoy project management, life-planning and organising my home, money, time to be more efficient. And I also know that if I can’t see the greater goal reflected in day to day activities, the goal will not be achieved. It is that simple. That is why I still haven’t lost that weight I have wanted to for years, because the substance of my days does not facilitate meaningful weight loss. No matter how much you want something, if it doesn’t make its way into your routines, it will not get done. So, have a look at what your current routines are saying about your future. If you don’t like the prediction, change your routines.
19. Excellence is a habit
Another lesson I learned studying habit formation as well as continuous improvement. If I want excellence as an end goal, I need to put excellence into every step of the process. I want to live an excellent life, so everything I do needs to have excellence in it. Of course, as with beauty, excellence is in the eye of the beholder. My standard of excellence is not going to be the same as someone else’s. But the point is we see excellence as a type of high standard, if not the highest standard.
Excellence used to be an overwhelming concept for me, but once I understood it as a process, I recognised this process can be broken down into bite-sized actionable steps.
So, whatever excellence means to you, you can make it a habit and therefore eventually make it a lifestyle.