With the passing of dad, it has made me think about many things. What lessons did he really teach me and why? What is really his lasting legacy?
Number 1: Education, education, education.
Number 2: It is your duty in life to care for those who are less able than yourself, whether they are old, young, disabled, sad, or simply not as smart as you are, or able to deal with life’s challenges in the same way
Number 3: Don’t smack your children – it shows them that you are out of control, out of ideas, and beyond the point of reason. That is not the way to gain their respect. Don’t do it just because your parents did. They didn’t know better, and were only doing the best they could, with the resources they had.
Number 4: If you are going to do a job, don’t do it by half, finish the job and do the very best you can, whether it is taking out the rubbish, gardening, or your life’s vocation. If you do every small thing well, you will gain pleasure from it. If you cut corners and try and trick yourself or others, you will be revealed as the final result of your efforts will not be brilliant and to be admired, but will be lacking shine. Whatever you have been asked to do, do more than what is expected of you. If others don’t agree with what you have done, never mind. If they had wanted to do it so much, they would have done it themselves. Be a person that can be relied upon.
Number 5: Draw what you see, not what you think you see.
Number 6: Don’t follow others blindly, follow your own tune. Learn to be happy with your own company.
Number 7: Meet every challenge. Don’t get disheartened by what you perceive as failure – tomorrow is a new day and will bring new solutions. A man is not judged on how he faces the easy times in life, but how he faces life’s challenges. Be courageous in all you do.
Number 8: Life is a great adventure, embrace it.
Number 9: Forgive and forget. If you can’t forget it, then you haven’t forgiven it.
Number 10: Care for the environment, and treat animals the same way you would treat your loved ones.
Number 11: Be a real part of your community. Make yourself useful in any way that you can. Be kind, be thoughtful, be generous with your time and your god given gifts.
Number 12: Find every opportunity to remain active. You don’t stop exercising when you get old, you get old when you don’t exercise your mind and your body.
I try I think to live by these values. There are so many more, but these are the ones that keep recurring, and guide me through.