The Best Advice You Ever Got

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You may have noticed the title of my post yesterday Enjoy The Power and Beauty of Your Youth as lyrics from the song Wear Sunscreen by Baz Lurhmann (words from a column byChicago Tribune Columnist Mary Schmich).

It’s all about advice. My favourite line is “you’re not as fat as you think” which is so true when I look back at old photos of myself and remember at the time thinking I was fatter than I was!
My mother’s advice to me was to never do anything you wouldn’t do twice, and if you can’t be good be careful. She wasn’t one of those mothers who worried about the cleanliness and state of your underwear. When I’m deciding whether or not I should do something, I don’t take her advice on never doing anything I wouldn’t do twice, because sometimes you need to do something once to discover whether or not you want to do it again. Instead I go back to the children’s fable Henny Penny (also known as Chicken Little) and ask myself “will the sky fall in?” If the consequences of my actions are not terrible for myself or others, then I will take a risk and do it, falling flat on my face or even getting some egg on it are not the end of the world, and won’t stop me from doing things.
What is the best advice you’ve ever been given? Do you live by any advice in particular?

You can read the words for Wear Sunscreen here, and if you’re interested – the story behind the Wear Sunscreen song.

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18 Comments

  • Memories of my childhood are scarce, as the atmosphere in my home was negative and oppressive. I mainly got sad advice, like : Don´t look in the mirror, you will be proud. However, there is something my father always used to say, and it has all to do with self-esteem. He was Swedish and the translation is now from Swedish to Finnish to English, so it is a bit clumsy. I am happy to have this memory from him.` Who else is going to lift the tail of the cat, if not the cat herself´!

  • Best style advice; Just because it in fashion, it does not mean it is nice, or suits you. Only pick and choose form fashion what you like and actually suits you.

    In life; (similar to Sal) You have no, you can get yes.

  • My dad once told me, "You'll never be popular if you don't iron your clothes." This has influenced me greatly – I no longer buy clothes that need to be ironed.

  • My Nan used to say that if someone pays you a compliment the only thing you need to say is 'thank you'. So many women feel the need to dilute the effect of a compliment by saying 'oh, I've had this dress for years, etc'. No, thank you is all you need to say.

    And my Grandad always used to say: If you can't fight, wear a big hat. Excellent advice.

  • Best advice I've received, and frequently "re-gift" to others:

    Far fewer people are looking at you and judging you than you think. Most people are too busy thinking about how they themselves look to even notice how you look. So dress for yourself.

  • I can't get past Kristin's dad's great advice. Love it!!My dad used to say, "Black attracts everything but men."

  • Metscan – it saddens me how negative your childhood was. Interesting saying!

    Sal – great advice.

    TreadUpon – some great advice there for us all.

    Lydee – your Mum was was!

    Gilraen- very true.

    Kristen – you make me laugh! I tend to go for non-iron clothes (or pay an ironing woman to iron for me!)

    NotSupermum – how does wearing a big hat work?

    RB – sage advice

    Belette – your Dad was right – black is not the most friendly colour.

  • "Wear Sunscreen or the Sunscreen Speech are the common names of an essay titled "Advice, like youth, probably just wasted on the young" written by Mary Schmich and published in the Chicago Tribune as a column in 1997.

    The most popular and well-known form of the essay is the successful music single released in 1999, credited to Baz Luhrmann."
    (source: Wikipedia). It was originally attributed to Kurt Vonnegut, an urban myth.

    The best advice I got was from a former dance teacher who said "Never sit" by which he meant, don't sit on yourself (slump). Stand up and face life.

  • My Mom's 2 favorite pieces of advice are slowly getting through to me:
    "Rome wasn't built in a day"
    and
    "It's not the end of the world".

  • Duchesse – yes I left some links at the top and bottom of the post about the history of this song.

    Struggler – I subscribe to your mother's advice.

  • My Mom had two pieces of style advice I still try to follow:

    1) Always buy an outfit, instead of, say, just the skirt. The exception would be if you're buying a basic like a cream blouse. However, she never liked buying the whole "collection" either.

    2) Buy the best shoes you can afford.

    Life advice? The Golden Rule…treat others as you yourself would like to be treated.

    Christine

  • Two things that have been in my mind in recent months –
    "Let us then, be up and doing, still achieving, still pursuing." – Longfellow

    and, "A girl should be two things; classy and fabulous!" Coco Chanel

  • I got alot of "keep out of the sun" – bored me stiff in the 70's but I am glad I did to stop my Mum and Grandma nagging!
    I am older and my skin is better than some of my friends who tanned alot!

  • Style advise was never really given to me, so I've got nothing to share on that front, but there is a saying that stayed with me regarding my general outlook on life:

    life is drawing without an eraser.

    how very true. you can't go back and undo things, so take on the road they led you to.
    It works.

  • I had totally forgotten about this song. Checking out your site today, I ran across it at the perfect time. No coincidences.

    Thanks for the fashion advice, but especially thanks for this post.

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