Our job, as a content agency, is often to distil wisdom into punchy, readable content. Easier said than done, sometimes. But our Managing Editor Alison Marshall makes it look easy, as her recent 50th birthday Facebook post shows.


After a week of celebration it's time for reflection: my 50 life lessons from 600 months of living:


1. Always be happy in your own skin

2.When you find someone you love hold on to them for the rest of your life. Don't let them go because you think you're too young/the time isn't right: there's no guarantee they will come back to you

3. Never try and change the person you love

4. A partnership should make both of you stronger than you are as individuals

5. Real friends will love you for who you are, not the car you drive or the house you live in

6. Not all people that go to church regularly are nice

7. Be kind every day

8. Designer bags and shoes don't define you, as I read recently better to have a $10 bag and $290 to put in it than a $290 bag and $10 to put in it

9. Life is an adventure, seize every opportunity

10. Don't party too hard when you are young — when you get to middle age you will find yourself ill and broke

11. You control your own happiness

12. Cherish every minute with your children and tell them every day that you love them 

A cheese sandwich can be as delicious as a gourmet meal with the right location and the right company

13. Smile. It makes you and everyone else feel better 

14. Spend time with people you love. They won't appreciate the times you put flowers on their grave

15. Distance doesn't diminish true friendship

16. Don't let your job title define you. Those hangers-on that like to be associated for the kudos will soon disappear if the job goes

17. Everyone has their good points — even if you can't immediately see them!

18. Do what you love and love what you do

19. A well paid job is not worth the money if you don't enjoy it 

20. A cheese sandwich can be as delicious as a gourmet meal with the right location and the right company

21. A good diet will guard against ageing more successfully than any 'miracle' creams

22. Don't wish time away; live in the present

23. Only worry about things you can control

24. Crap happens, learn how best to deal with it. The bad times will pass

25. Losing someone you love is the most painful thing you'll ever experience, you never get over it but you will learn to live with it 

26. When you're in a partnership you don't have to be joined at the hip

27. In general, men don't get excited about cushions and candles

28. Don't worry about what other people think of you

29. Be able to laugh at yourself

30. Revel in simple pleasures: a great sunrise, that perfect coffee

30. Understand that you can't always be perfect

31. Offer help but don't let people take advantage

32. Never underestimate the great feeling you get from spending time with friends

In general, men don't get excited about cushions and candles

33. Never spend more than you earn

34. Apart from a mortgage try to manage life loan free

35. Never be afraid of hard work. But don't live to work; work to live

36. Manners are appreciated (but underused)

37. Value the elderly in society. Their stories and experiences are priceless. That little old man along the road is likely to have been a war hero in his day

38. Never stop learning. Age is not a barrier 

39. Wear what you like 

40. It's okay to ask for help

41. Music is almost as good as medicine

42. Fashion isn't for everyone 

43. A kind gesture is more valuable than expensive gifts

44. Treat everyone the same. Not only people in positions of power deserve respect

45. Never regret

A kind gesture is more valuable than expensive gifts

46. Being a parent is the best job you'll ever have

47. We all want equality but to be there for your children, one partner's career is likely to have to take a back seat

48. Money doesn't buy happiness — or health

49. Every day is an opportunity to learn something new, or meet someone who will make a difference to your life

50. A sense of humour is underrated

50 Years, 50 Life Lessons

BY Alison Marshall

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