The 12 Best Pieces of Advice Your Mom Ever Gave You

Mother’s Day is a day to celebrate the woman who made your existence possible. You know, the one who put a roof over your head, and forbade you to wear those short shorts with “Juicy” written on your ass when you were thirteen. Sure, we held a grudge for awhile, but now? We get it. Good call, Mom.

Mothers have a way of shaping our personality, and certain traits that Mom instilled in us will last a lifetime. Thanks to my mom, I have an unhealthy habit of making sure every single kitchen appliance is off when I’ve finished cooking. Is it important? Of course it is. But do you need to get OCD over it? Probably not. Nevertheless, it’s a trait that will stay with me for life.

Here are some more of the best pieces of advice that we can only get from our moms. (Or, quite possibly our dads – but they have their own day later on in the year.)

  1. When you marry the man, you marry the family. He might be the perfect guy, but if his Mother is a nutcase and his sister keeps asking you to borrow money for questionable reasons? You’ll be stuck with it for life when he puts a ring on it. Always get a good idea of what you’re marrying into.
  2. Don’t talk about others negatively in public places. You never know who might be overhearing your cattiness. Even if you don’t see Person X at the Perkins you frequent to catch up with your girlfriends (because pancakes are amazing), their Aunt, Uncle, or neighbor might be in the next booth.
  3. If you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all. Yes, we were watching Bambi at the time. But she made sure that this solid piece of advice from Flower the skunk was hardwired in my brain.
  4. Life isn’t fair. It’s true! It isn’t. While it was often just a cheap comeback after a childhood debate (since it’s not fair that I can’t buy Lucky Charms!) the statement has been proven true every day of adulthood. Sigh. Well, I can’t say I wasn’t warned.
  5. Every choice has consequences. Some are good, and some might be pretty terrible. It’s always important to think about what’ll happen after making the choice you choose to make.
  6. If you don’t try, you can’t succeed. Sure, it didn’t ease my anxiety at the time, but it’s true. If you don’t put yourself out there, nothing will actually happen. By not trying at all, you’ll instantly fail.
  7. Your personality is a part of you that’ll always be attractive. I mean, looks fade. Weight loss might just be temporary. Having a good attitude and making sure you’re a kind person? Those are the real qualities that’ll make you shine.
  8. Don’t dye your hair – it’ll never look the same again. Of course, I went ahead and did it anyway, like any rebellious teen. I totally forgot what my natural hair even looked like throughout the entirety of my twenties.
  9. The best quality to look for in a partner is a sense of humor. When they can make you laugh, you know you’ve struck gold. If you’re equally funny, you’ll totally need someone who gets your punchlines.
  10. “If all your friends jump off a bridge, would you jump off too?” I think this one was written in the handbook that I’m envisioning all mothers get upon birth of their children, in a chapter called “Fun Rebuttals.” If you’re like me, you might pause for a second and try to figure out why all of your friends would be compelled to do something so stupid in the first place. While it’s common to get this during an argument where “Everyone at school has a Nintendo, why can’t I?” I also see it as being a push to be unique, original, and in charge of your own brain.
  11. Never go to bed angry. This is one that I try really hard to do. Not only will anger totally disrupt your sleep, but it’s important to solve all arguments and disagreements in order to have a fresh tomorrow. Remember what you love about your boyfriend or husband, and realize that in the grand scheme of things, holding a grudge about who washed the dishes last is seriously nothing to ruin a good day over.
  12. Everybody is created equal. Don’t judge anyone based on differences alone. By judging someone based on a stereotype, you’re doing everyone a disservice.
Karen Belz is a New Jersey native who is currently living in Maryland. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Speech Communication with a focus in Broadcasting and Print Media Studies from Millersville University of Pennsylvania. Since graduating, she has written for sites like LittleThings, HelloGiggles, and Scary Mommy and is currently an e-commerce editor at Bustle.

When she's not writing, she enjoys making her phone run out of memory after taking too many photos of her dog. You can find her on Twitter @karenebelz or on Instagram @karenbelz.