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  • Antonia G.

The Best Advice I Learned From My Mom



When I was a teen, I would always laugh at the anti-aging advice my mom would give me like: "always moisturize your neck" or "sleep with a bra on so your boobs never sag". (True story, lol).

But her best advice about aging gracefully that I valued the most, reflected the life lessons she taught me about how to take care of myself on the inside, not the outside.

So, in honor of Mother's Day (and my mom's birthday), here is the distilled version of her wisdom; from her, to me, to you.

Do good and forget about it

The amount of time and money I've spent on people that were undeserving of my kindness is incalculable. I used to take it personally when my good nature went unnoticed or unreciprocated, so my mom would always remind me that you should never be keeping score. If you do something nice for someone, do it from your heart, not because you want something out of it. Even as an adult, anytime I do something gracious where I find myself thinking "wow, that person was really unappreciative", I remember my mom's words.

If you spit in the air it’ll come back to hit you

I've lived long enough to know that what goes around comes around. The world works in mysterious ways and you never know how people are connected. After breakups or falling outs, my mom was an advocate of speaking highly of someone and not speaking badly of them. If you choose to bad-mouth a person, it will undoubtedly come back to you in some negative way, shape or form.

Don't count other people's blessings

It’s really easy to look at someone else's life and draw your own conclusions without all of the facts. Or to think someone is "luckier" than you for some superficial reason. The reality? No one has it all together. EVERYONE HAS PROBLEMS. Whenever I need a reminder of this, all I have to do is read the news or get online. After that, I get all of the perspective I need to figure out what is truly important in MY life. So if you're going to count anyone's blessings, count your own.

Never put down someone who works - no matter what their job is

As an immigrant who came from nothing, my mom earned every opportunity that came her way. Still to this day, she cries when she recounts the story of her childhood and how kids made fun of her for being poor and not speaking good English. She had to take several jobs - from house cleaning, to working in a grocery store, to waitressing - all to support her family and put herself through college. But because of my mom's resilience, she never let anyone's judgment bring her down. She always emphasized to have nothing but respect for someone who earns an honest living and supports themselves - even if they're a garbage collector.

The only thing permanent is death

Whenever I would FREAK OUT about something that was not worth freaking out about, my mom would always remind me that "there is a solution to every problem and the only thing you can't undo is death". No one is above negative emotions or bad days - they happen to all of us - but it is all in how we handle it.

What you see is what you get

I really hate to believe this one, but people continually show you who they are. And when they do, you should believe them. You should like someone for who they are, not who you want them to be. People can can tweak certain things about their habits, but after a certain age, people are who they are. So if someone is mistreating you now, it's not all of a sudden going to get better. The unattractive behaviors we see before we enter a commitment with someone, only worsen after commitment.

When you tell the truth, you have nothing to remember

And that is the truth.


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