9 Pieces Of Life Advice From Your Grandma That You Should Actually Listen To
There are so many little things that I've proudly inherited specifically from my grandmother: a love of literature that informs my passion for language, her taste in beautiful vintage clothing, and a wonderful sense of curiosity that borders on nosy. When I was little, I'd lie on the couch and place my head in her lap so that she could stroke my hair and bestow on to me little pieces of life advice.
My grandmother has had an incredibly exciting life journey. She's lived everywhere from India to England, and experienced Partition and the Iranian Revolution firsthand. And although I'll admit that some of her counsel feels a bit outdated or outlandish, there are some little gems of guidance that she's dropped on me that I will surely remember forever. These include tiny tidbits, like exercising every day to lead a long and healthy life to more philosophical bequests and doing at least one thing that you love for yourself, every single day.
I'm extremely fortunate to still have my grandmother in my life. Even though I value her opinion, sometimes she will make the most absurd statements, that I know I should not actually take to heart (hey, she's from a different time). But here are seven people on the advice you actually should take from your grandmother, because as it turns out: she may have been right all along!
1. Being Single Is A Gift
"My grandma gave me some advice I thought was pretty funny and candid coming from a composed 4’10” 80-year-old woman.
It can be so tempting to choose someone out of convenience. When that post-grad depression sets in, or you start getting asked to be everyone’s bridesmaid or you simply just meet [someone]that’s nice but not interesting and would probably settle down with you, it’s hard to take a step back and realize that “The One” is largely a myth. But the one that’s right for you isn’t.
There’s no need to try out so many partners solely because our culture encourages it. Being single is a gift. Date as much or as little as you want but be active in your learning while in a relationship or out of one. Stay vigilant about what your needs are whether you’re dating or not. And trust that you can find someone, out of the billions of people on this planet, that fits you and never settle or compromise your identity in the meantime." — Alanna Diggs, Founder of The Wimpact.
2. Don't Play The Lottery If You Don't Expect To Win
"My grandmother told me: be yourself, there’s only one you. Don’t let others take away your joy and stand up for what you believe in. Save your pennies, as they'll add up to dollars. Be kind to animals, because you may come back as one some day. Keep a pepper shaker in your car, you never know when someone may approach your car and you’ll need to use it. Don’t play the lottery if you don’t expect to win. And attitude is everything." — Sherry Gavanditti, PR Media Specialist at Menorah Park
3. The Moment You Stop, Things Start To Go Downhill
"Recently, when I was visiting her, my grandmother said this, 'The moment you stop is the moment things start to go downhill.'
Hanging out with my grandma offered so many gems of advice, and this was one of them. My grandma is a young 86-year-old who will literally do anything she puts her mind too all the while being petite at 4’10”. She continually tells me she’s so busy. She was a full time caregiver for my grandfather, still does yard work, takes care of the house, involved in church, and I have never heard her say, 'I’m too old to be doing that.' Someone told me after this experience that sometimes we have to take time and help out our loved ones, insinuating that my grandma couldn’t do something on her own, and my grandma was there. I quickly said, 'While that may be true for some, my grandma is the one that helps me out.'
To say I’m inspired by her is an understatement. She is a rockstar and one of the rocks of our family, and I’m forever grateful to learn and be loved from her." — Bobbi Klein, Travel and Lifestyle Photographer
4. Don't Let 'Em Suck You Dry Just 'Cause You're Sweet
"My very Southern grandma, whom I'm named after, was full of great advice but one thing she used to say stuck with me: 'You catch more flies with honey than vinegar, but don't let 'em suck you dry just 'cause you're sweet.'
Basically, be pleasant and kind in your interactions with people but stay firm and never let them run over you. Wise words that have served me well!" —Nancy Redd, bestselling author of PREGNANCY, OMG!
5. Be Smart
"I was very close to both my grandmothers and they lived until my 20s and 30s, so I was fortunate to get a lot of very good advice from them. Here's what has stuck with me the most:
Be smart — one went to college and one did not but both encouraged me to read a lot, find areas I was interested in and learn everything I could, travel to experience life first hand and have an opinion I can defend. They were both strong women who believed women could do anything. One got her pilot’s license to fly with her husband, they were fearless and I adored them." — Paige Arnof-Fenn, Founder & CEO of Mavens & Moguls
6. Be Kind
"Be kind — they were both from the Deep South and believed in good manners. They were polite and strong and taught me you could be both. Being kind is not a sign of weakness but strength." — Paige Arnof-Fenn, Founder & CEO of Mavens & Moguls
7. Be Happy
"Be happy — they both were very optimistic people who chose to look at life through a positive lens. Their lives were not always easy but they always had a great attitude and taught me that happiness is a choice you make every day.
I miss them both a lot and think of them often." — Paige Arnof-Fenn, Founder & CEO of Mavens & Moguls
8. Shoulders Back, Chin Up
"My grandmother was a stickler on posture. No slouching! Sit up straight at the dining room table! There was no choice but to follow her advice (she didn't give us the option to ignore it) and I'm glad I did. Yes, I'm complimented on my "good posture" which is nice however, I realize having great posture is powerful and a confidence boost too." — J. Kelly Hoey, Author of Build Your Dream Network
9. This Too Shall Pass
"I am a screenwriter and published author, and two pieces of work that really lifted my career off were based on my grandmother who sadly passed when I was 12. But her words has influenced my entire life and certainly my writing.
She always told me to live my life with grace but the one thing she said that stuck with me was 'this too shall pass.' The good, the bad, everything shall pass. Life is fleeting so enjoy it. Live bravely. Love hard and don't live in fear." — Kelli McNeil, Author and Screenwriter
I still have dinner with my grandparents every Sunday night. We sit around a table packed with traditional Persian food, and swap both recipes and wisdom. My grandmother recently told me that she fell in love at the age of 12, and has been in love ever since. "When you know, you know," she said. Inspired by her words, I've vowed to stop second-guessing my gut. It's a lesson that I hope to one day pass down to my grandchildren.