Often, our life lessons come out of painful struggles. One of Oprah’s favorite lessons was learned through experiencing disrespectful relationships. Her friend and mentor, poet Maya Angelou taught her that:
When People Show You Who They Are, Believe Them
And, believe them the first time, not the 29th time! For example:
- When we are mistreated the first time
- When he doesn’t call back the first time
- When someone shows us a lack of integrity or is dishonest the first time
Usually these behaviors are followed by many more instances of disrespect and subsequent disappointment.
- How many of us have continued to believe someone, even after they consistently failed to follow through on their word?
- How many of us have felt there must be something wrong with us to be treated this way, and tried harder to get their attention, affection and love?
Typically, we don’t learn this lesson the first time, but as long as we do eventually get it, we will save ourselves further wasted time, pain and suffering.
Maya Angelou shares many other life lessons she has learned which are shared below:
I’ve learned that no matter what happens, or how bad it seems today, life does go on, and it will be better tomorrow.
I’ve learned that you can tell a lot about a person by the way he/she handles these three things: a rainy day, lost luggage, and tangled Christmas tree lights.
I’ve learned that regardless of your relationship with your parents, you’ll miss them when they’re gone from your life.
I’ve learned that making a “living” is not the same thing as making a “life.”
I’ve learned that life sometimes gives you a second chance.
I’ve learned that you shouldn’t go through life with a catcher’s mitt on both hands; you need to be able to throw something back.
I’ve learned that whenever I decide something with an open heart, I usually make the right decision.
I’ve learned that even when I have pains, I don’t have to be one.
I’ve learned that every day you should reach out and touch someone. People love a warm hug, or just a friendly pat on the back.
I’ve learned that I still have a lot to learn.
I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.
Think about what your favorite life lesson is and why?