Monday, February 18, 2008

Six Things

Wng at A Whole New G has tagged me to list six actions or achievements one should accomplish before age 18. This is a tough one.

I asked my husband for suggestions.

"Getting laid?"

It looks like I'm on my own here.

1. Begin to learn a musical instrument. It will provide endless years of pleasure, even if you are not Segovia or Jimi Hendrix.

2. Make plans to continue your education by attending college, community college, or vocational training. It is very important to be able to support yourself and any children you may have later. Explore every subject that interests you because the more you know, the more options you will have. You will also never be bored.

3. Develop pride in yourself and a strong center. Know that you have the ability to accomplish whatever you really want to if you are willing to work hard for it. Don't believe anyone who says you can't.

4. Begin a spiritual practice, whether that means going to a traditional house of worship or walking in the woods, pondering life's mysteries. Yoga. Meditation. Jewelry making. Knitting. Running. Anything that focuses your attention so that you lose track of time and your own ego qualifies as a spiritual practice.

5. Realize that you are a unique individual. There has never been anyone quite like you before, nor will there ever be again. This is true of everyone, so although life requires you to compete sometimes for what you need, always understand that you were born the best you possible, and your worth is not wrapped up in winning admission to that particular school, or getting that plummy job. While those things can be wonderful gifts, they will never define who you really are.

6. Practice compassion. This is difficult to learn in a vacuum, so I very much hope that you are taught kindness by example, not by command. This should start well before the age of 18 as children do live what they learn.

My Best Bud, Claudia, at On a Limb with Claudia gave me the Best Blogging Buddies Award some time ago, and this has been sitting here waiting to be tagged onto another post. Well, guess what? This is the post.

She says, "I give this award to Heart in San Francisco for her constant support, loving guidance, and willingness to engage the world. In moments of need, she has really helped me - that’s what best buddies are for!"

From your lips to God's ear, Claudia. May I somehow become all that you say I am. Thank you!

Claudia is a person I deeply admire for her total commitment to being the best she can be while also helping others on their own paths to personal greatness. Her other blog, Everyday Kindness encourages everyone to commit to performing one act of kindness a day.

Franki at Frankily Yours is quirky, saucy, ballsy and funny, also kind and smart, the consummate artist in various media.

Wng at A Whole New G is transparent, honest at any cost, has a lovely soul, delightfully wry humor, and a fine way with words.

Sienna (Pam) at Audio Video Disco is one of the most generous and supportive people on the Internet who shows her sensitivity both in her marvelous photos of her beloved Australia and in her comments to other bloggers.

Red Mojo at Half a Bubble Off is pithy, deep, honest and also has a wicked sense of humor. I get the feeling that there is nothing Mojo can't do well, and her travels (and travails) through life are always a treat.

Ian at Or So I Thought addresses issues both international and personal, but always with a great deal of compassion. He is a professional writer so his excellence is a given, he shares his inner thoughts easily and exemplifies right thinking.

Chani at Thailand Gal is my due North for conscious compassion and enduring values. She has adopted Thai culture because she has found her true home there, but her ideals for right living apply to any community.

Odat at Odat's Mumbling epitomizes a classy lady. She always gives 300% to others with warmth and a wacky sense of humor and asks nothing in return, which is one of the reasons so many of us love her dearly.


Ian Lidster said...

Well, being who I am, I must say I'm with Flip on his first suggestion. But, moving right along now, great suggestions all of them. I'd add one more: "Don't ever-ever-ever start smoking. You will rue the day!"
And thank you, dearest, for my award. I am touched and honored.

WNG said...

Honestly: I love it when other people say nice things about me!...and I now feel massive amounts of pressure to live up to it.
That was a great list, Hearts. Tell Flip to write his own :)

Anonymous said...

Congrats to you! All wonderful choices.

RED MOJO said...

I like your list. I have to say, mine would be similar, of course no one under 18 would listen to these, so I don't how helpful the list is.
Anyhoo, thank you very much for kind words, and inflated opinion of me, and for passing the "best blogging buddy" torch to me. I will try to pass it along judiciously, and not just randomly like you! ;0

Odat said...

If we only knew then what we know now...we'd all be perfect and kind and loving .....but I think we all turned out ok in spite of it all....
Great meme! Thanks for sharing it.

and hey!!! You're making me cry!!!!!
I've had enuf of that!!! But I'm smiling while I do it!!!! Wow, it's an honor to accept it from you!
Thank you.

thailandchani said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
thailandchani said...

Hm. In thinking about it, the most important thing to learn before the age of 18 is respect for all living beings. Everything else seems to work out from there.

Thanks for the nod. :) I appreciate it.

Did you notice Odat's little dancing picture? :)

heartinsanfrancisco said...


I'm sure that you and Flip would be a great comfort to each other, like Huntley and Brinkley.

I definitely would have included the caution against smoking if I'd thought of it. As I have never smoked, I didn't, but non-smoking is one of the most important skills anyone should master.


Well, it's easy to say nice things about you. No pressure, though, you're already there.

I think that WAS Flip's list.


Thank you! You are all wonderful choices and great friends.


Excellent point about no one under 18 listening, but it's all theoretical.

Are you dug out yet?


I suspect that you would get this award from everyone who visits your space.

I'll have to figure out a way to make you laugh, though. Just for balance, you know?

Thank you for all that you give to so many, constantly.


Your suggestion should have been in my list as it's one of the precepts I hold most dear.

Odat always finds things to dance about.

Sometimes Saintly Nick said...

Congratulations on the award!

As for your list, I accomplished 5 of the 6 by age 18. I'm satisfied.

Have a fun week.

Anonymous said...

I love the last on your list the best. Compassion - a necessary quality.

Maria said...

I totally think that in this world you absolutely need to get the best education possible. There are SO many people vying for so few jobs that it would be folly not to think ahead.

meno said...

Those are EXCELLENT answers. I got tagged for this one too, but now i feel intimidated. Maybe i'll just plagarize your answers. :)

The CEO said...

Excellent insights on your part, and wonderful choices. Thank you.

Mariposa said...

Wonderful list...I should have read those years ago!

By the way, got another AWARd for you...I'm guessing it's not your first time to get an Excellent Award! ;)

heartinsanfrancisco said...

Saint Nick,

Now that's intriguing. I've been trying to figure out which one you missed.


Well, you would know. You have that one to spare.


It's true. Education is never wasted, and I can't think of a better investment for young people of any age.


Awww, you caught me peeking over your shoulder again during the test.


I'm so glad you agree. Thank YOU.


I wish I'd known when I was 18 what would be important to me later.

Thank you for the award. I am honored.

Open Grove Claudia said...

Great choices! Boy... Well done!

Plus I love your ideas of what you should know by the time you are 18 years old. I'd say something dumb like balance a checkbook and work a job but that's just me! ;)

Josie said...

I like your list of things to accomplish before the age of 18, Hearts. It's a great list and I agree with all of them.


I have to agree with Flip's suggestion too. Hey, life is short. :-)

heartinsanfrancisco said...


I didn't know how to do either of those things when I was 18, and was notoriously bad at both for a long time.


I wasn't sure I could come up with anything besides grammar, algebra and maybe sight-reading music when Wng asked me to do this.

It took me a little more thought than it took Flip.

Maithri said...

A fantastic list! and a tender hearted blog,

Sending love,


Sarge Charlie said...

You have a way with words little lady, I read your words at ODAT'S place and so much agree with you. I suspect we are a world apart but think the same way about a classy lady. Now you have given me some more blogs to read.

furiousBall said...

As a guitar teacher, I love #1. And I love Franki, even though I accuse of her of everything from anything that goes wrong with my teeth to wanting to see my Dad naked.

heartinsanfrancisco said...


Thank you for the pleasure of your visit. I am honored.


It seems we agree on the really important things.

Thank you for coming by!


I love Franki, too, and it probably is her fault.

Could you clear up who, exactly, wants to see your dad naked?

Molly said...

Great list. Several are no-brainers, but I paused at the one about valuing yourself. The "Me generation" probably would have no problem, but so many of my peers were brought up to be seen and not heard, to please the grownups/teachers/authority figures to the detriment of pleasing themselves.....

heartinsanfrancisco said...


I was brought up that way, too, and if they hadn't had to see me, either, that would have been even better.

I wish I had been raised with even the vaguest concept of self-esteem because my life would have been far more rewarding.

When you have none, you make too many compromises which ultimately erode your soul.

There is a huge bandwidth between valuing yourself as you do others and being selfish and self-absorbed. I wish I had been allowed to experience life in that area.

Sending a child out into the world believing that she has no worth and no right to happiness is a particularly brutal way to express parental "love."

meggie said...

The trouble with not-yet-being-18, is that there is a tendency to think you know it all!

If I knew then...

Los Angelista said...

That is a great collection of six actions or achievements!

The sex thing could go either way. For some, they need to stay away from it. Others clearly need to get some!

I love many of the bloggers you tagged. They really are great bloggers that write such inspiring and interesting things.

heartinsanfrancisco said...


Yes, as they say, "Too soon old, too late smart."


If there were a reliable way to tell which ones are which, it could save a lot of heartache in the world.

Lex said...

Geez! Where were you when I was 18!?!?! I really wish there was someone to tell me to just go ahead and get laid...oh, and the rest of your suggestions.

Honestly, a great list.

heartinsanfrancisco said...


That was Flip's suggestion. It really hadn't occurred to me, dork that I am. And trust me, nobody was giving me advice like that either.