Kickass Life Lessons from a Near Death Tour Guide

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Top 10 Life Lessons from someone who walked the edge of death and came back to tell the tale.

Top 10 Life Lessons from someone who walked the edge of death and came back to tell the tale.

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  • 1. Top 10Kickass Life Lessons(That I had to learn the hard way but ended up loving every minute of it) Katie Swanberg NorCalKatie.com
  • 2. Allow me to introduce myself. I’m Katie Swanberg, and I’m a Transformer.In the span of two years time, I:Left my marriage and got divorcedContracted bacterial meningitisAlmost diedWas in a comaWas wheelchair boundLearned how to walk againHad my heart brokenWrote a novel which will never see the light of dayLost my dogLost my house to foreclosureFound myselfMet the man of my dreamsGot soberLeft my day jobHad a nervous breakdown Life is an adventure.
  • 3. I preface this guide with this information because …It’s pretty crazy, right?! Cool story!I lived through it and so could you.It completely TRANSFORMED my life.I consider it education I didn’t have to pay for, and want you to have it also. If this was my last day on Earth and I had to reflect on my life and my legacy, these are the Top 10 Life Lessons I would want to give to you. Big Love, Katie
  • 4. Happiness is an inside job.
  • 5. It is your job to make YOU happy! Nobody else can do it for you. When you leave theoption up to other people, you give away your power as an individual. You are the experton you and what you love. People will tell you what you should and shouldn’t like, butfollowing your heart instead of the crowd is way more fun. By expecting other people tovalidate you, you miss the opportunity to validate yourself and live your life on yourterms. People come and go from your life. If you leave it up to them to make you happy,you never know when they might walk out the door and take that validation you’ve cometo reply upon with them. Instead, Love yourself and the people who are meant to enhanceyour life will appear and stick around by your side. By expecting to be rescued, younever learn to save yourself. Sometimes you have to be your own hero.
  • 6. Everything will be OK in the end. If it’s not OK, it’s not the end.
  • 7. That moment when you feel like nothing is ever going to end or get better? It ends.One day at a time, or even an hour at a time. Breathe. You will make it through. (See page 2).Reach out – someone else you know has been through something very similar to you orperhaps even the exact same thing. Talk to your tribe. Find and create that supportnetwork for yourself and the people you love. Life goes on, things get better, and even thedarkest nights give way to bright days. Don’t quit five minutes before the miracle.
  • 8. What other people think of you is none of your business.
  • 9. I assure you, people are so concerned about themselves that they aren’t even thinkingabout you. I promise. The most peace I’ve ever felt in my life is when I was doing myown thing and not caring about what others thought of me. What freedom! But seriously,Don’t let someone else’s opinion of you influence your self-esteem. It’s a recipe for disaster.Each person that comes through our life serves a different lesson. Don’t let other peopletake up real estate in your head. Take care of yourself and your business. Worry takesup energy you could be using to love people in your life. It’s not worth it. What’s yours isyours and what’s theirs is theirs. Don’t confuse the two. We all have bullshit, but you don’thave to take on someone else’s bullshit about you. It’s about them anyway.And don’t let someone else’s bullshit convince you that you aren’t beautiful.
  • 10. Just let go.
  • 11. Do you want to be right or do you want to be happy? Let go of the past – you can’t driveforward by only looking in the rear view mirror. Surrender to win. Send people love.Say a prayer, turn it over, let it go. Ritualize it if you need to. Burn it. Sometimes it’s betterto quit when you know better, and you know when you know better. When you knowbetter, you do better. Let go of having to control everything. When you realize there is apower greater than yourself (however it is you define that) in this world or Universe, youwill finally realize that you don’t have to control everything anymore. Let go of naggingfears, what-ifs, resentments, and negativity – they will kill you slowly from the inside.Let go of the quest for perfection. Enjoy your life, the people in it, and yourself as much asyou can. This is the only life you get. Let go of all of the shit that doesn’t matter.
  • 12. Listen to your Intuition.
  • 13. You know that voice inside of you, that breath, that whisper, that…feeling that alwaysknows just what to do, if only you follow it? Follow it. Cultivate a relationship with yourIntuition, she will never steer you wrong. Even when she’s telling you to walk away,jump, flinch forward, or quit your job, she’s right (true story). The more you listen to herand practice what she says and follow her lead, the stronger she becomes and the moreyour life starts to look like the life of your dreams. She’s your manifesting wizard.Let her do her thing. Stand back and watch the magic happen.
  • 14. Be of service.
  • 15. Be of service to other people and their needs. Your friends, your family, strangers andacquaintances. This world needs more people looking out for one another. Volunteer.Give your time and your love without expectation of reciprocity. Everyone is talented in theirown way and has gifts to share with other people. Playing music, sharing art, teachingprogramming code, gardening, photography, business or financial skills - we each havesomething to add to this world. Always do the right thing. You can’t help someone elsewithout helping yourself at the same time. Ask for help. Offer your help. Enjoy being as t u d e n t o f t h e u n i v e r s e . B e t h e c h a n g e yo u w i s h t o s e e i n t h e w o r l d .
  • 16. There is no certainty.There is only adventure.
  • 17. There is no road map for life. Is life random? Is there a divine purpose to this? Do thingshappen for a reason? It all depends on how you look at things, and there is no wronganswer. Maybe you don’t know what’s going to happen next week or next month, butwhen you sit around spending time worrying about what might happen, Life happens. Ispent 10 years obsessing about the breakup of the relationship I was in, and I wasted 10years where I could have been enjoying it while it lasted instead. Don’t wish your lifeaway for more, bigger, different. Enjoy where you are right now because everything you’vedone to this point has led you to this moment, and you’re exactly where you should be. Ifyou’re unhappy with your life, change it. Set out on an adventure. Make lots of decisionsabout lots of things, each a step in a new direction and a new life. Anything is possible.
  • 18. Life begins at the endof your comfort zone.
  • 19. Touch the outer edges of your being. What does it feel like? Does it scare you? What areyou afraid of? What’s the worst that could happen? You’re not going to die. Well, you willsomeday eventually die but most of the things that scare the shit out of you aren’t goingto kill you. Foreclosure, divorce, embarrassment…life happens. Life goes on. Humans areremarkably resilient creatures, if we only get out of our own way. Limitations are meantto be shattered. Stretch yourself and your beliefs. Find new and inventive ways toenergize yourself. Try new things. Scare yourself. You never know what you might learn.
  • 20. Love your body.
  • 21. Your body is a temple, and it’s the only one you get. Worship it. Treat it well. Spare noexpense when it comes to your health. You’ll miss it when it’s gone. Food can bemedicine or poison, which do you choose? Start a revolution – stop hating your body. Loveyour curves, your moles, those stretch marks, the way your hair falls on your face, yourlopsided ears, and battle scars because they make you the unique, sexy person you are.Eat great food. Exercise. Use your body. Have amazing sex. Turn the stereo up, roll downyour window, and feel the wind rush over your hand while driving in the country on abeautiful day. Feel the water of a shower trickle down your scalp. Enjoy a massage orjaccuzzi as much as humanly possible. Fall in love with your body and all of its potential.Life is short, make peace with the vehicle that makes it possible to experience it all.
  • 22. Be you.
  • 23. The best gift you can give yourself is to be authentically you. Be the person you are at thecore of your being. Allow your inner self to match your outer being. The best gift you cangive the world is you being your authentic self. People like being around people who arecomfortable being just who they are. What a gift it is to be yourself. It’s the ultimate act ofself love. Whether it’s your sense of style, the way you carry yourself, your hobbies, theway you talk – be you. Don’t be the world’s best kept secret. You never know who’s life youmight touch if you only give yourself a chance to be you and speak your truth. You canchange the world. Follow your calling. Embrace your passion. Live your life. Show up inthe world as you. You get what you give and the world reflects you like a mirror. What doyou want to be when you grow up? Fall in love with yourself, and others will do the same.
  • 24. The journey is the reward.
  • 25. Life is a journey. A crazy, wonderful journey. It’s also short, and we only get one chance atit. Live with integrity, love, gratitude, and moxie. Life is a marathon and not a sprint(although sometimes it feels like both). I want to die with zero hours left on the booksand zero dollars left in my bank account, proud of the amazing ride I had. I want tobreathe in everything this world has to offer and enjoy the journey with reckless abandon.I want to be of service to others who want to do the same. I want to leave nothing on thetable at the end and be able to say that I gave this life everything that I had. I’m convincedmore than ever that the purpose of life is to be happy. So be happy. Look people in theeyes and give them your love. Live life today, for tomorrow is not guaranteed.
  • 26. Kickass Life Lessons + LoveNorCalKatie.comThis guide is free for all to share and love. Share it with the Universe under the terms ofthe Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 license.All pictures taken by me!© 2012 Katie Swanberg