A WELL STYLED LIFE

...style is more than what you wear, it's how you live your life

January 27, 2014

Life Lessons


I've decided that if a book doesn't hold my attention, is unpleasant or stupid, it's OK to put it down and stop reading it. Much easier to do with a library book. If I paid $25 or $40 for a book, I'd make myself finish it, and dread it the whole time.

Watching no less than 20 boxes of my books being packed into a storage unit two weeks ago, I decided to start using the library a little more.
I found a treasure in God Never Blinks -50 Lessons for Life's Little Detours, by Regina Brett. I'm enjoying this book so much I wish I'd purchased it in hard cover.

50 lessons for life's little detours. Inspirations living well.

Each chapter is a lesson told as personal essay. They may seem simple messages, but she tells them with such honesty and humor, they strike a cord with me.

Some of the "lessons" are:

~Don't take yourself so seriously. No one else does.

~Make peace with your past so it doesn't screw up the present.

~Don't compare your life to others'. You have no idea what their journey is all about.

~What people think of you is none of your business.

~Frame every so-called disaster with these words: "In five years, will this matter?"

~Be eccentric now. Don't wait for old age to wear purple.

~Get rid of anything that isn't useful, beautiful or joyful.

~Life isn't tied with a bow, but it's a gift.


Lesson #21 resonated deeply with me last night.



Regina discusses how being diagnosed with breast cancer was her wake up call to start using her best things. It was her reminder that we all have an expiration date, a shelf life.

Perhaps it's because I've been so very sick with the longest, nastiest of flu's this year...but I thought, yes!! What am I waiting for?
I've long since replaced our stainless flatware, with my mother's silverware. ( you never have to polish it if you use and wash it regularly).  I've always used cloth napkins, and have fresh flowers in the house each week. But I need to do more.

Feuille de Lavande diptique mini candle

I got right out of my chair and ran a hot bubble bath for myself. I added Epsom Salts, organic lavender oil and a small bit of bubbles... which frothed up a lot. I put on some classical music, lit a candle had a nice long soak.

Later I dug through my ribbons and grabbed this simple Chanel one. I'm pretty certain it came wrapped around a bottle of perfume. Until I can make myself a pretty bookmark, it looks nicer than a scrap of paper, or folding down the page corner.

~
My son thinks I've been so sick this year because I haven't been practicing enough self care. I'm always worried about other people's struggles, especially my family. My stress levels have been through the roof...for a long time.  Too long. 
I'm guessing he's right. I can't burn the candle at both ends, physically and emotionally, then expect to keep the same pace I did when I was in my 30's or even my 40's.
~

As proof of my sons wisdom, I made a quick dash to the emergency clinic again yesterday. Surprise! One can get the flu twice in the same season. There are multiple strains, and just because you've suffered through one, doesn't preclude you from getting the others.  Who knew?

I think I'll buy this powerful little book for myself, then loan it to my son. That way I'll own it, and Mr. Wise Intuitive can get to read it.

Have you read any books by Regina Brett?

Do you save your good things for later?

35 comments:

  1. Aw you poor baby. I did not know you could get the flu twice in the same season. Bless your heart. Sounds like you need a vacay once you are well. in the meantime, I prescribe hot baths every night until your skin shrivels to a raisin and then a foot rub performed by hubs:) I do subscribe to the 5 day, 5 month, 5 year mantra...it does keep things in perspective.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I just reread that chapter this morning! It's a great one. Not much of my daily stresses will matter in 5 years. I'm guessing none will. xo

      Delete
  2. A great reminder for us! I particularly like this one: Frame every so-called disaster with these words: "In five years, will this matter?"

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I may need to print that one out and tape it next to my computer.

      Delete
  3. It's one of my favourite books. I read the follow up book but this one remains my favourite. I have the book and listen to the audio version in my car. It's that good.

    I hope you are on the mend. I'm a big believer in radical self care. It allows you in turn to care for others! Love the pampering. Looks luxurious.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm just loving it Jen. I'm pretty certain you mentioned it on your blog and it sounded right up my alley. So a big Thank You to you!
      I'm taking Tamiflu this time around so it should be a shorter flu. It is giving me lots of extra time to read, which is a good thing :)

      Delete
  4. Oh I am sorry to hear that you have the flu again...your season sounds very much like mine was last year at this time. That's why I took early retirement. The book sounds very inspiring and the author has some good points. You can be of help to others but you also must tend to your own needs.
    Please email me at bungalowhostess@gmail.com
    (I cannot find your email on your blog anywhere)
    I'd love to send you something in the mail.
    Take care and continue that pampering!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I do remember when you were so sick last year. It was dreadful. I need to retire from pushing myself too hard and trying to do it all. Clearly I can't :). I'll shoot you an email. I thought it was in my blog. Lesson 51- don't play in my HTML. xo

      Delete
  5. I love this! I am going to order this tomorrow! I love niceties as well and have been trying to use the good. I am so sorry you have been so ill. Your son is likely right, but that doesn't make it any easier! One of my greatest joys in getting older is being truly me and caring less and less what others think and taking better care. Lord it has only taken me 51 years to start to understand that!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think you could have written this book Wendy! Your insights are so wonderful to read. At 57 I'm still a work in progress. Not caring what others think is a big one for me, but I'm getting there! Clearly taking better care of my health is an issue too. xo

      Delete
  6. Jennifer, this does sound like a book to keep and repeatedly refer to. It looks like it would be a nice gift as well. I hope you are staying warm. Bonnie

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It will be a fabulous gift to several people I know.

      Delete
  7. p.s. I hope you feel better soon! Bonnie

    ReplyDelete
  8. Thank you for sharing this wonderful book! I'm going to go out and buy it! Sorry to hear that you have the flu. I work in an elementary school and have seen it go through all the grades and some of the teachers. It's bad.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Great post. I have to remember Lesson 21 more often. I have a tendency to save things and it really annoys me about myself! I will think of you tomorrow when I wear something nice! Also, I love the Chanel ribbon as a bookmark. I do the same thing with Hermes perfume sample cards, they make the nicest little bookmarks. I hope you are feeling better very soon. XO, Jill

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love the idea of the perfume cards. It would smell so lovely and give me a longer time to see if I like the fragrance. Smart!

      Delete
  10. I just love this, it's all so true!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Sage advice especially the "what other people think of me is none of my business" I first read this in one of Stuart Wilde's books. I have just gone down with a bad dose of flu after a very stressful period. Am sure the two are connected.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think that's a safe bet. Wishing you a speedy recovery. It's a nasty one this year. Take care of yourself.

      Delete
  12. Jeepers, you've been through the mill with this flu thing, time to build yourself back up, I'm going to sound like your mum, but what's your diet like, are you eating properly? Hmm, hmm? I'm a tyrant with mum, I drive her up the wall but she hasn't even had a cold in over ten years.
    I do now use my good things, I started that about 8 years ago, I couldn't be bothered with two sets of cutlery, glasses and plates and what not, so just picked the best, started to use them and took the rest to the charity shops.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My daughter has been reading me the riot act about my diet. Directing me to veggie smoothies and such I thought I was eating well, but I know it could use some beefing up. Kale??

      Delete
  13. I think of it as having a slightly European attitude towards life. My mother is German and always stressed the importance of using the "good" stuff - everyday and in every way. Plush towels, good sheets, china and silver, quality clothing and shoes. It's the little things that enhance the quality of day-to-day life more than we know, I think.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Oh dear Jennifer.. I'm sorry you've been hit with a double dose.. this too will pass. The book sounds like great "medicine" and I like those lessons at the top! So true! I think it's all about balance........ easier said than done as mothers/females tend to take it all one and we don't heed (health) warnings. The bath looks perfect .. sending hugs! xxL

    ReplyDelete
  15. FIrst off this just landed in my inbox this AM at 7:57 on the 29th of January!Why is that when we are in the same state?You PUBLISHED yesterday!
    Yes,its hard for me NOT to finish a book too even if I do not enjoy it………reading one now about PRINCESS MICHAEL of KENT that is all about her ordeal with the CATHOLIC CHURCH!ITs not what I had anticipated so its a bit tuff to get through,but I am going to finish it.
    I had that epiphany a few years back………I use the GOOD STUFF daily,I dress in purple A LOT,and I'm learning NOT to care what people think of me!I enjoy how I live and I live with A LOT Of STUFF that is only BEAUTIFUL to me.I have made my nest and am happy to stay home and just be.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Somehow, I can picture you wearing lots of purple!!

      Delete
  16. seems like one of those little books we need to keep open and available as a little reminder to be good to ourselves as well.
    Take care and feel better
    Maryanne

    ReplyDelete
  17. Jennifer, this is book looks wonderful! I am going to check it out!
    It is so true...once that dreaded disease that begins with C touches one's life, one's perspective changes. Wisdom shared is always so appreciated, my friend!
    Every day is a gift! I can see the Whistler "Peak to Peak" from our time share in the sun as I write to you!
    A glorious BC day indeed!
    w/L

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Peak to Peak!! That must be an amazing spot. My daughter tell me the winter has been mild and lovely. Can't wait to see for myself. Enjoy!! xoxo

      Delete
  18. So sorry you are still fighting the flu! Hopefully this will be the final bout. Thank you for sharing this book, it definitely needs to be on my bookshelf!

    ReplyDelete
  19. Jennifer this is such a lovely reminder to us all. Just what I needed to hear for the weekend. Hope you are starting to feel better. Take good care and I would LOVE to meet up sometime.
    xx

    ReplyDelete
  20. A friend of mine told me about this book a few years when she was battling cancer... she believes that he doesn't and she doesn't believe in coincidences either...

    ReplyDelete
  21. Wonderful tips! I absolutely agree with using and enjoying everything now rather than saving things for special occasions. Your bubble bath looks amazing. I hope you are soon feeling much better.

    ReplyDelete