Inspire Me Today – Ann Hall – 3 June 2012

Be the best possible you. Lead a life that matters. Shine where you are. ~ Ann Hall Marshall

If I could share 500 words of wisdom to summarize what I’ve learned so far in life, these are the important things I’d want to pass along to others…

Many people have told me I am an inspiration to them. That’s because I’ve written and published two novels, a new career starting at age 85. “You’ve demonstrated that it’s never too late to follow your dream,” they say.

Well, I’m glad they’re inspired, perhaps motivated to breathe new life into their own abandoned dreams.

Yes, think bold, dream big, climb the highest mountain you can. But be sensible. Do you want to spend your life in sullen frustration because you never ascended Everest? Stand on top of the old worn-down hill in your neighborhood and glory that you’re there.

Be a CEO or star quarterback if that’s destiny. If it’s your role to be a follower, be a successful follower. You’re needed. You keep the world spinning. If it’s your job to prepare three meals day after day after day, change the diapers, rock the baby, work the garden, pay the bills, do your job well and do it cheerfully. Shine forth to those around you.

Seek to live a generous, committed life, loving and learning, giving, growing, glowing. That sums up my inspiration.

Here are four pillars that have supported my happy life:

• When I come to a fork in my road, I always choose to do something I believe is important, something I think I can do well, something that God will smile on, then I do it with all my heart.

• I have never decided what to do next based solely on how much it paid. I’ve no objection to being rich but early on my husband and I chose Frugal Comfort as our minimum level of income. We believed that we ourselves were responsible for the education, medical care, and other things that our ten children really needed. We would work together, plant vegetables, buy groceries wholesale, welcome hand-me-downs, and forget about driving a luxury car. When we went into our community to volunteer, we chose projects where we could take our children along as helpers.

• Home should always be a dependable place but never a boring one. Have fun with your family today. I believe that ripples from a strong family strengthen the community and flow out to touch the whole wide world.

• I don’t give advice unless asked. If asked, yes, I have something to say. If the advice isn’t taken, I don’t get upset. That’s why I am friends with my eight adult children.

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