Lesson one: Life isn't fair.
Life isn't always fair, but that's no reason to give up and stop trying. Eventually, we all come to learn that things don't always go as planned and that life is meant to have its ups and downs.
That said, it's time to learn these harsh lessons that will make you stronger and more appreciative of the great life you have.
1. Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results is insanity.
If you want to lose weight but don't change your diet, it will never work out in your favor. You can't keep doing the same thing and expect something different to come out of it. If you're unhappy but don't make any life changes, you won't become any happier. If you want change you need to do something different to make the change.
2. Don't keep watering dead flowers.
When it's over, move on. If your relationship ends, you have to pick yourself up and move forward. Watering dead flowers won't bring them back to life, no matter how hard you try and how much you water them. When it's over, it's over.
3. You can never make someone love you.
Sometimes you can love someone with all your heart, but they won't feel the same, no matter how hard you try. Forced love isn't love and will never make you happy. You owe it to yourself to find someone you care about and someone who reciprocates those feelings toward you.
4. No matter how much you want something, sometimes it will never be enough.
You can want to win the Powerball more than anything in the world and put your whole life savings into buying tickets, but that doesn't mean you will win. Sometimes you work your ass off at work and someone else will get the promotion.
Sometimes, things in life just don't work out the way you want them to. Life isn't meant to be fair, but it doesn't mean life isn't good and you shouldn't keep working hard.
5. When one door closes, another will always open.
If you fall down, you will never stay down — you always get back up. You will fail and you will succeed after that failure. If you get fired from a job, your life isn't over. There will be another door that will open and you will find success again. Staying down is the only thing that will lead to another door not opening.
6. Someone saying sorry doesn't always mean they actually are.
You can say you're sorry until you're blue in the face, but that doesn't necessarily mean you mean it. Sometimes you only apologize because you get caught and that's truly sad and unfortunate. Until you no longer repeat those actions you apologized for, that will be when you're truly sorry.
7. Talking about people shows more of who you are than they are.
The way you talk negatively about people, pointing out their flaws or their behaviors show more about you than it does them. It shows your insecurities and makes you look like the bad person. Saying someone is ugly won't make you any prettier, so stop bashing others. We're all trying to figure out life together.
8. You don't need a lot to be happy.
"If money truly buys happiness, then politicians and CEOs should be dancing in the streets. But only poor kids do that. If power ensures security, then presidents and kings should walk unguarded. But only those who live simply can sleep soundly. If beauty and things bring ideal relationships then celebrities should have the best marriages. But it's not the truth. Simplicity leads the world." —Kelsey Ayikoru Sabo
This quote has really stuck with me. You don't need much to be happy. Collections of souvenirs and a house full of items will never make you happy. Items won't fill a void in your life. Happiness is internal and something you have to work on. Find the good in your life.
9. You have to want to change in order for it to happen.
No one can do the work for you to change, and no one can want you to change and make it happen. If you want to change you have to want to put in the work. You have to truly want it and work for it every day.
10. Avoid the rearview mirror.
You're not going back — you can't go back. As much as you might miss the way things used to be, they will always just be the way things used to be. Time can't stop and you can't go back. That's why you have to cherish the time you have and enjoy the memories.
This article was originally published at Thought Catalog. Reprinted with permission from the author.