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Marion C. Garretty once wrote, “Mother’s love is the fuel that enables a normal human being to do the impossible.” But when it comes to the real, everyday advice from Mom, impossible is nothing. Sandwiched somewhere in between “Have you been eating enough?” and “Are you warm enough?” lays jewels of wisdom gained from a whole generation of lessons learned. While it can get easier to gloss over motherly advice the older we get, resisting the urge to do so can open the doors to self reflection, simply by remembering the advice from our number one fan that holds true regardless of our age or stage in life.

“You can be both pretty and smart.”

Ah, the old fallback that we have heard from our mothers since our first day of school – and still as true as it was in preschool as it is today. As college girls, we know our minds are more important than our looks, but being the total package can also lead us down a rabbit hole of feeling intimidating to others or feeling unable to find a partner who values both qualities. But in the spirit of our mother’s advice, be yourself, and that means being both without caring what anyone else thinks about it. We’re all beautiful and smart in our own unique ways, and that’s the difference between being a college girl robot and an actual college girl.

“Experiencing only love robs us of the exquisite pain of a broken heart.”

Allow yourself to go back to the first boy who broke your heart, and remember what your mother told you. Heartbreak is part of the process of being alive, and the pain can be beautiful if you allow yourself to grow through it. Whether your Mom was the type to bring you ice cream in bed or the type to hug you while telling you how big of a jerk your old flame was, or even the type that is still on your side when the one who got away comes back, appreciate her for reminding you that growing pains are just another part of being a woman.

“In the game of life, don’t be the one to keep score.”

Micromanaging your own life by categorizing people and events into tally marks of frustrations only prolongs a cycle of suffering that can be completely avoided by heading your Mother’s warning to let go of stressful burdens. When it comes to life’s disappointments there is an old Zen proverb that Moms seem to have mastered a long time ago: let go or be dragged. Try to count how many times in one way or another you have you heard your mother say, “Tomorrow is a new day.” Well, tomorrow is a new day – your day.

“Don’t ever let anyone tell you that you can’t do something.”

As college girls, inequality and injustices are going to rear their ugly heads at one point or another, but what makes you a woman is your response. Always do the best that you can do, and if a moment of defeat comes, revel in your own personal success and fight to the best of your ability. Conversely, acknowledge those who you recognize as facing their own inequity, because a little empathy goes a long way.

“Just be yourself.”

This blanket advice from Mom covers all occasions: new jobs, first dates, new relationships, and any new twists and turns life has to offer. As a fallback philosophy, these three little words go a long way in terms of feeling whole with yourself, feeling confident in your own skin, and letting yourself shine. When you embody this philosophy, you turn inward and follow your own path, and everything in life will fall into place on its own. Deepak Chopra wrote, “The only goal worth attaining is complete freedom to be yourself.” When it comes to fulfilling that goal, we know through her boundless advice that mother always knows best.

What do you think?

What is the best advice that your mom has ever given you? What is the quality you look up to the most in your mom? Let us know in the comments section below.

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