Choosing to put the discouragement, the doubts, the doubters, nay sayers and fear behind you is imperative. If I had a dollar for every time someone told me No. Said I wasn’t good enough. Laughed at my name…. The fear feels real, the worry is great, the doubt closes in. I know. I’ve been there. I’m there. Move forward... – Giorgi Centeno-Antinori

Giorgi & Leo Ant

So wise beyond her years: Giorgi with husband Leo

I’d wager there isn’t an artist, entrepreneur, or forward thinking risk-taker throughout history that these words wouldn’t resonate deeply within. I know right now “move forward” is my daily mantra. In fact, these pearls of wisdom come from a twenty-something year old friend of mine who possesses an old soul, and they happen to be exactly the words I wish I could go back and tell my 25 year old self:

Listen up 25 year old self!

Listen up 25 year old self!

1). You have a vision blazing within you. The doubters and nay sayers may even mean well. For instance, parents who want to protect you from failing, and of course there will be others that feel threatened or jealous of your courage to forge your own way, and will try to hold you back. Never let anyone else extinguish that fire, no matter what their intention.

2). Sure, some criticism may hold credence. Try to step back and ask yourself objectively if you are overlooking a potential problem in your plan? Acknowledge it if there is – problems are simply road blocks that may require a detour while the road is rebuilt stronger and more direct. Learn to accept constructive criticism, and grow from it.

Hang only that which embowers you

Hang on to only that which embowers you

3). Weed through the advice that empowers you, and that which impedes you, and let the later go. I know that is sometimes much easier said than done, but there is good reason you need to distance or leave some people behind you.

4). Choosing to march to your own drum,  often means leaving the path of least resistance.  No one is promising you this will be easy. Self doubt will rear it’s ugly head, and negativity is the sword that will strike you down, if you let it. Work at reprogramming those pesky negative thoughts, and be sure to surround yourself with positive thinkers, because you will probably need to borrow some along the way.

Keep knocking on doors with as much enthusiasm as the first

Keep knocking on doors with as much enthusiasm as the first

5). There will be doors slammed in your face. Learn to roll with the punches. All you need is one yes, even if you have to suffer a gazillion no’s along the way. Pick yourself up, dust yourself off – remember you are passionate about your goal, then knock on that next door with a smile and as much enthusiasm as the first.

6). Really going for it, does mean risking that you may fail. Of course you want to prevail, but view any failures along the way as just another opportunity to learn. You never know when those “failures” will open new doors.  Continually growing wiser, while moving forward will only help you succeed in the end.

With friend and mentor, Norel Mancuso

With friend and mentor, Norel Mancuso

7). There is no shame in admitting you don’t have all of the answers. The real danger is when you think you know it all. Take every opportunity that comes your way to get to know and learn from those who have the experience and success you aspire to, and don’t forget to thank them for sharing their valuable time and expertise.

8). We all feel fear, fear is natural, but it’s what you choose to do when faced with it that matters. You can succumb or persevere, but you really only have one choice if you want to succeed. Courage is not the lack of fear, it is the strength to acknowledge it and move through it anyhow.

Things I would say to my 25 year old self

Things I would say to my 25 year old self

9). Quitting is not an option. If you hit a dead end, find another road to success.

10). You can do this! Just keep moving forward, one day at a time. You might even write an award-winning recipe one day!

Jewels Turkey-Jasmine Burger

Jewels Turkey-Jasmine Burger

This is one of the first recipes I ever wrote, and it won “best poultry burger in America” on Food Network’s Ultimate Recipe Showdown! Since it is a little labor intensive, I would recommend doing double portions of at least the turkey burgers to freeze for a later date – why make a mess twice when you can do it all at once? After all it is about affording YOU the luxury of time!

PS. Since it was Giorgi’s wisdom that started me off on this rant – I thought I’d treat you Giorgi and Leo’s music – which does lift my spirits whenever I feel low. Keep moving!

What words of wisdom would you have for your 25 year old self? You know what to do – leave a comment below.

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