Happy Mother’s Day: The Best Things I Learned from My Mother
My mom is a power woman who taught me life lessons early on. She is an incredible problem-solver (it’s what she does for a living) and forward-thinker as well as my best friend.
This is why I’m excited to share with you the most valuable things I learned from My Mother. I hope it inspires you, makes you smile, and reminds you of the power of Motherhood. Here it goes:
1. No excuses.
I’m not sure why, but in second or third grade, I had one of the “strictest” teachers. I would come home and tell my mom how hard my homework is and compare it to a friend in another class. My mom told me that I’m always going to have tough teachers, and one day bosses. That’s no excuse for what I can do. I shouldn’t waste my time on excuses. I should focus my energy on solutions. No excuses, do your best work. For most of my life, these words of wisdom have played in my head over and over again as I’ve had to deal with difficult obstacles.
2. You, a woman, can be a boss.
In my family (no offense Dad), I like to think my Mom “wears the pants”. Seriously. Her belt is always on. She’s worked in Corporate America forever and has worn a full suit to work every day. On the weekends, she wears half a suit. SHE’S THAT MUCH OF A BOSS. But seriously…I had no idea that women struggled to be bosses. When I was very young, my mom would take me to work with her in the big city. I would see her lead meetings in front of a room of people, despite me knowing she didn’t like talking in front of people much. She just had to do it because she’s the boss. My mom wasn’t a PTA mom. I wanted her to be when I was 8, but as I’ve grown up, I’m glad she wasn’t. She showed me what it’s like to be a strong woman. She excels at her job, takes care of her family, and somehow, makes time for fun.
Growing up, I knew that she worked in NYC, tackled big projects, led meetings, worked internationally, and was one of the only women in her team. I knew that she worked harder than anyone else on her team. As a kid, she would take care of me and my brothers, but still went to work for like 18 hours. She commuted to NYC via train while pregnant with twins almost until the day gave birth. She battled NYC during 9/11, walking with debris all over her across bridges. She worked all day and still went to my concerts, school meetings, games, and birthday parties. She did it ALL while being a boss at her job. Just the other day, after her kids are all grown up, she pulled an all-nighter at work to finish up a project. Her team stayed until 4AM. But my Mom, the boss, stayed until 4PM the NEXT day.
She does everything she can to provide for her family, accomplish killer goals at her job, and inspire her team to do more and be more.
3. Always dress UP (and wear makeup).
My mom has two sisters and a bold mom (my grandmother). We can ALL talk about make-up, nail polish, jewelry, and clothes for HOURS. Putting us all in Sephora is scary (yet SO FUN). I remember going out to play lacrosse in high school and my mom couldn’t believe that I was leaving without mascara on. I said, “I’m the goalie and I wear a mask over my face”. She didn’t care. You should always look good and wear makeup. She’s not saying I’m not naturally beautiful, but I should do things that give me a little extra pep in my step. Since then, I feel like I always look put together (except on the days I workout before 530AM HA). My outfit hopefully matches (I’m colorblind, so you never know), my hair is done, and make up is fresh (even if I’m teaching a fitness class).
This applied to not just how I look when going to school, the gym, or to the food store. When I was interviewing, even for internships or gym-related jobs, she suggested I always wear a suit. I should always dress UP not down. Now…I don’t know if that’s always the case, but I do believe that we are taken more professionally and we feel better when we are dressed up. I would rather be overdressed and fabulous than dressed down and look ridiculous.
4. OK Good. GO DO IT.
Let me tell you this…I considered EVERY MAJOR IN THE BOOK from Anthropology and Biology to Economics and Psychology. During my freshman year in college, I would call my Mom every other day with a new idea. I’d say “Mom…I just learned about being an OB-GYN, I’d be so good at that!” OR “Mom, I’m going to be a Spanish Teacher. I love it!” Years later, I’d say “I’m going to do this” or “What if I did this?” Her response to all? “OK, Good..GO DO IT.” She knows she can give me advice and guide me in the right direction, but no one can tell me exactly what to do. UGH the struggles of being an adult human being – I know. But, you’ll never know unless you try. My mom would suggest that I go off and JUST DO IT (as long as all things are safe & sound). Don’t make excuses. Don’t wait for others’ approval. GO DO IT. FIGURE IT OUT.
5. BE SMART
I hate to say this, but there are occasions when bright people make silly choices. Sometimes (OK OFTEN) I make stupid (CARELESS) decisions. For example, I used to agree to lead a fitness program without charging just because I loved it. I would pay for a photographer for an event even when it was out of my budget. I would go out a date with someone who’s not “husband material”. I would pay for something I truly can’t afford. Her response? BE SMART. That’s it. Make smart decisions. Don’t be an idiot. Even now I have to say to myself “BE SMART” before making a payment or booking an event. WWMD (What would mom do)? is really the best question to ask here. So instead of paying for a course that you don’t need or hailing a cab when you can easily suck it up and walk, be smart.
6. Keep calm.
Worrying and losing control is never a good look. Whether it’s in the middle of an event (where there’s ALWAYS something bound to go wrong), dealing with a sick friend or family member in the hospital, receiving bad news, or dealing with an unruly customer, staying calm always wins. Going haywire, getting nervous, and freaking out will get you nowhere. Keep calm, stay patient, solve the problems at hand. Done.
7. HAVE FUN
After college, my mom realized that I was a workaholic. I don’t really have an obsessive personality. I don’t have any true obsessions or addictions. I mean…I did CrossFit and I didn’t tell the world about, ya know? But…working…I love it. I love it I love it I love it. Sometimes I get so wrapped up in working that I don’t make time for fun. For several years, it got me in trouble. My friends and even guys who I’d date thought I was too busy for them. So..a little over a year ago I had a wake-up call and realized that my Mom was right. Having fun, going on dates, seeing friends, and planning “leisure” time is important to a well-rounded, happy life.
8. MOM IS ALWAYS RIGHT.
When I was in kindergarten, my mom was teaching me how to cook scrambled eggs. She told me to NOT touch the stove because it was on fire. I didn’t SEE fire, so I didn’t believe her. Just to test her, I put my whole hand on the stove and burnt my hand SO BADLY. I learned my lesson early on that Mom is always right.
These are just some of the great life lessons that I’ve learned from My Mother, Mama, Mom, BFF, and Super Woman. This doesn’t begin to explain all of the life and work challenges she’s helped me to conquer. I mean…she helped me, YES ME, pass my road test on the first try people! Me and my brothers are so lucky to have YOU Mama G!
To all of my friends who are Moms, YOU are rockstars. You get the opportunity to greatly impact your children’s lives. It’s a blessing. Thank you for being YOU. Moms are the best!
HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY!