Dear Ones –

Yesterday, a friend of this page named Gloria asked if I would write some advice to her daughter, who is in her senior year, about to head off into life.

Such an honor to be asked!

So today I thought I would share with you all the thoughts I gathered for this young girl on the brink of adulthood (or, as we say it my family, "on the adult of brinkhood"):

"Out into the world you go! Here is some advice along your way: Stay out of debt! Keep your expenses low and learn how to live without luxuries so you can have a bigger and more free life, unbound by the fear of the bill collector. Remember that Autonomy Is The God of Woman. Never give your heart or your body to anyone who doesn't view you as a precious treasure. Never use another person's heart or body as a way to pass time while you're waiting for real love to come along. Don't ever expect somebody else to hand your destiny to you — go out and find it. Follow your curiosity bravely, because ultimately it is your curiosity that will lead you to your passion. Remember that you are not made of sugar candy: You are stronger than you think, more powerful than you could ever imagine. Therefore, stay near people who know that you are strong and stay away from people who fear that you are weak. Character is more important than personality, both in yourself and in your friends. Learn how to be happy alone. Listen more than you speak. (I'm still learning this one!) Don't worry what anyone is thinking about you; they are only ever thinking about themselves, anyhow. Don't smoke. Don't ride motorcycles — especially not in Southeast Asia. Floss. Wear your seatbelt. Don't drink sugary sodas. Try to be creative for a half an hour a day. Save your money (have I mentioned this?) and give yourself the gift of travel. Don't get married too young: Statistics show that the happiest women are those who delayed marriage. (In the meantime, if you want to wear a pretty diamond ring, you can always buy one for yourself.) Be interested and you will always be interesting. Have FUN! Love, Liz"

(ps: I took this photo of the sky yesterday with my iPhone. It really is a pretty spectacular world. Go out there and look up.)

via Elizabeth Gilbert’s Facebook Wall

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