A Facebook friend of mine recently requested suggestions with regard to advice and topics to impart to a group of teens he was soon to be addressing.  Even though he himself is a watershed of information, he was asking for comments from others.

Which got me thinking, what—if given the chance—would I impart to my teenage self?

What would the adult me tell that girl knowing what I know now and based upon not only my life experiences but upon the life experiences of my colleagues and friends?

It also got me thinking about my son, who is now 16, and the world he lives in today and just how different it was from when I was his age.

Would the advice I gave and give, which I am sure much to his chagrin I do, to him be different from the advice I would supply if given the chance to advise my 16-year-old self?

The answer—when it comes technology and the Internet and the way the world is now–is  yes. If I had known the direction technology was headed at 16, that I do now, then I’d’ve picked a different career, or at the very least made sure I was ahead of the techno curve.

But when it comes to spiritual advice, and living by what I call the code of the law of integrity, then the answer is no.  I would not give different advice to my 16-year-old self than I would to my 16-year-old son.


Because spirituality, our spiritual compass, is constant and has been since the dawn of humankind. It has to do with how we conduct ourselves and our lives and how our individual actions affect the collective whole of humankind.

It’s that simple.

So with that said, what I advice would I give to my 16-year-old self and/or to my 16-year-old son? What would my ideal Words of Wisdom be?

They would be as follows:

  1. Listen to your inner GPS, your guidance system and moral compass as, for that is the voice that comes from God, the Universe, your higher power—whatever you wish to call it. As long as that voice comes from a place of love and is about progressing the human condition and not harming others than it is truth. Even if it is a truth different from what your elders, and yes, even parents tell you is truth.
  2. Honor yourself. Don’t do anything that will cause physical, emotional or spiritual harm to you.
  3. Honor others—don’t do anything that will cause physical, emotional or spiritual harm to another.
  4. Honor and respect your parents, elders and teachers. This does not mean that they are infallible or always right. But realize that they are doing the best they can with the toolset life and their unique life experiences have provided to them.
  5. Realize that  you don’t know it all. You’ll grow, progress and change.  Conversely realize that at 16, you do know a lot about many things and as such deserve to be listened to, accounted for and treated with dignity and respect.
  6. Hold yourself accountable for all your actions and deeds. If you make a mistake—own it; if you take a stand and can’t back it up—own it; but if you take a stand that others try to silence your voice or intimidate you as to try to sway you to their point of view even if you feel it is contrary to your moral compass, then stand firm in your path and views.
  7. Laugh often. Life is filled with trauma and trials and tribulations and if you can’t laugh at the pain then it makes you bitter. But that doesn’t mean laugh at another or ridicule. It means laugh at what is oft the absurdity of the human condition.
  8. Be kind to others and to oneself. And to all of creation.
  9. Be fearless. Always try to learn something new every day….never grow stagnant. Always continue to grow and expand.
  10. Treasure the present. The moment. For today is all we truly get. The past is gone. Tomorrow may never come. But today is a gift so live, love and enjoy. Make every millisecond count.
  11. Forgive those whom aggrieve you, but don’t repeat the aggrievance or experience over and over again either with the same person or with another person exhibiting the same traits.
  12. Learn your lessons and move onMaybe I should’ve made this one number one.
  13. Be an example for others. Show; don’t tell. Teach my leading don’t preach empty words.
  14. Pray often—not just in times of need or grief or fear but most of all in times of gratitude.
  15. Most of all be grateful.
  16. (Here’s a sweet 16.) Have fun. Don’t take life so seriously that you forget that we are all here as spirits experiencing a physical quest and not physical beings on a spiritual quest.  Our spiritual wholeness and oneness and constant connection with source is ever-present…we just forget it at times. We need to remember it more often and if we did, the world would be so much better off.
That’s my list. Which leaves me pondering, what would your list be? Let me know. 




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