My Best Advice

Over the years I have been given lots of advice. Some of it has been good and some of it has been bad. (As in really, really bad.) My dad's advice has always been pretty much "on the money" though. His advice has not always been practical but it was generally a good idea if you could follow it.
With regards to saving money:
"Pay yourself first."
"Always save 50% of what you earn."
With regards to men and dating:
"If he wants to be with you, he will. You don't want to force him to be in a relationship." 
With regards to safety:
"Getting a (driving) ticket is not worth it. Wouldn't you rather do something else with that money?"
but my very favorite pieces of advice that my dad has given me are:
"I will always love you no matter what."
"You can do anything you set your mind up to do."

"Always do your best."
Those pieces of advice have definitely come back to bite him in the butt a few times.

You know how when I'm up in North Georgia at college and Justin is down at Georgia Tech without a car and everyone is planning on coming to a concert with me, and I call my dad and cry when he says he won't pick Justin up to come to said concert? Yeah, I set my mind to it, and I did my best. Even worse: I relied on the fact that my dad said he would always love me. Justin was coming no matter how hard I had to beg, plead, and persuade even if it meant my parents had to drive an hour out of the way to pick him up. (The drive they were going to be making was already 2 hours.) Believe me -- I begged. ;) (Yes, sometimes I am a terrible daughter.)

Of course, those pieces of advice have also encouraged me to improve upon myself… even when I feel like the whole world is against me. Sometimes I sit and think: am I really doing my best? When a teacher refused to give me a recommendation for grad school, I stuck to my goal, got recommendations from other teachers, and got in. I was soooo happy when I got the acceptance letter!

In fact, I love when I surprise myself. It's like a little goal in life for me. Especially when it comes to photography and photoshop. Lindsay Adler once said that photographers tend to be detail obsessed and control freaks. If there is one thing slightly amis (and there is always one thing), it has to be fixed. You can imagine how happy this makes me when everything comes together just the way I want it in the most perfect way I can imagine. I definitely can't say I've done my best if I am not happy or impressed with what I've done, can I?

But even with all of the advice that my dad has given to me over the years and how it has encouraged me to make better choices, I truly believe there is no substitute for an amazing support system. My mom, my husband, my friends, the instructors I've learned from… It's always a good idea to surround yourself with people who believe in you and know you can go far, even on the days when you don't believe in yourself. Yay for confidence!!

Now… go do that thing you are afraid to do! :) I believe in you.

**This blog post is part of Story of My Life's Blogtember challenge. Visit her website to find out more and participate yourself. :)

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