The useful (yet oddly amusing) lessons my mother taught me

She carried me for nine months, taught me to walk, fed me, washed my clothes, held my hand, wiped my tears, cheered me on, listened and advised, yet somehow this wonderful woman still finds the time to teach me some of the most valuable life lessons I just could not live without.


If it doesn’t work, turn it off and back on again
I cannot even count the times I’ve screamed at my laptop screen, frustrated at its annoying inability to work at the most inconvenient of times. But, my mother is always on hand to provide the flawless advice of ‘have you tried turning it off and back on again?’ which, in 99.9% of cases, has proven to be effective.

What NOT to put in the microwave
Basically, if it wasn’t for my mum I would have been hospitalised at least half a dozen times due to microwave-related incidents. Thanks mum, I owe you one!

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To turn my washing inside out
…and not to leave anything in the pockets for that matter (especially money!).

To be an efficient clothes shopper
“You’ve already got something like that”, “you’ll never wear it”, “It doesn’t match anything”… Oh the amount of times I’ve heard my mum say things like this! But still, I never learnt the lesson that she is always right until I realised just how much money I spend on clothes I don’t even wear. Tip: always listen to mum peeps.

…And food shopper!
From what to put in the basket to serve up a hearty meal, to what not to put in the basket if I wish to maintain a dancer’s figure, those weekly trips around the supermarket pushing the trolley (with mum holding on, in typical mum fashion) obviously rubbed off on me!

Not to bite my nails
If only I could revisit my 10-year-old self and force her to quit the nasty habit immediately, with horror stories of a post-teen with stubby nails and no hope of growing them back. Oh mum, why didn’t I listen?


If you want something doing, do it yourself
If I had a pound for every time I’d heard her mutter this around the house… And only now that I have responsibilities of my own, and have to endure the experience of ‘feeling like I might as well be talking to myself’ on a daily basis, do I truly understand her pain.

That it’s better to be an hour early than a minute late
When I was growing up, I had to be ready much earlier than any of my friends. There was no such thing as ‘fashionably late’ in our house and, at the time, this just meant less time in bed for me (which I obviously was NOT happy about). But now, as an adult myself, I see the value of being punctual and just how highly this is regarded in the workplace. And I’m always ridiculously early… God dammit mother, what kind of monster have you created?!

That being beautiful on the inside is so important
Through all the nasty girls at school, and the boys (need I say more?), my mother taught me one very special thing: it’s what’s on the inside that counts. And if you’re kind to people, and treat others as you wish to be treated, you’ll never, ever go far wrong.

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