45 Lessons From a 90-Year-Old (Part One) with Alyssa + Geoff

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When Regina Brett turned 90-years-old, she re-published one of the most popular columns she’d ever written—a list of 45 lessons life taught her. A few weeks ago, Geoff stumbled across this list, and we started talking about it over espresso martinis. We quickly realized we were having too much fun discussing it, so we decided to turn it into an episode. We’re bringing you along as we dive into each item on Regina’s list. You get Regina’s insights mixed with our unfiltered reactions and additional commentary.

And because 45 is a lot of lessons, we broke this episode into two parts. Part two will come out next week.

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Alyssa Patmos 0:04
This is Make It Mentionable. I’m Alyssa Patmos and this is the show about being human in a world that encourages us to be robots. I invite you to join me as we journey through the mess, the magic and the mania in between. Because what we can talk about, we can manage. This honest conversation extravaganza includes free flowing conversations and high doses of vulnerability to remind you that you aren’t alone. No topic is off limits, and episodes are designed to leave you smarter, aka more self aware than when you came. I am so glad you’re here.

Hello, Hello. And welcome back to another episode of Make It Mentionable. Geoff is joining me again for an episode from our couch. And today we have something fun in store. So a few weeks ago, Geoff found a list. How would you describe this? Oh, it’s it’s “45 Lessons That Life Taught Me”. And it is a list written by a 90 year old woman. I have no idea when it was written. Do you?

Geoff 1:21
No idea.

Alyssa Patmos 1:22
Okay, so we have no idea when this was written. But it is the list of 45 lessons that life taught this 90 year old woman named Regina Brett. And Geoff emailed it to me and he’s like, I want to talk to you about this over a drink. And so we started doing that on a recent trip. And halfway through, we stopped and decided that it would be good for a podcast episode for us to go over this list and talk about it and see what we agree with, what we disagree with, what we would add. And that is what we’re bringing you today.

Geoff 1:55
Let’s do it.

Alyssa Patmos 1:56
Alright. So, it seems like she was a columnist because at the top it says, “it’s the most requested column I’ve ever written.” So if I can find more information on Miss Regina Barrett, Bre -, no, Regina Brett, I will look it up and link it. But if not, here’s her list. Alright, so the first one, “Life isn’t fair, but it’s still good.”

Geoff 2:22
Yeah, this one says to me, it reminds me to be appreciative of what’s good in life, we can often focus on something that happens to us that we view as negative and it’s not fair this this why is this happening to me? But if we shift and say, but but what’s good, we realize that there’s always some good and always some bad, and most of it’s good.

Alyssa Patmos 2:48
Yeah. I like that. I think for me, it comes to like, you know, people are born in different situations. And so inherently, it’s not fair. Like the way economic economic systems work across the globe. Like it’s inherently not fair. And that doesn’t mean though, that we can’t find the good in every situation, but it’s going to be different for different people. And I think we have to recognize that.

Geoff 3:15
Yeah, I would, I would add, like, this is what I taught my kid like loving kids, like life isn’t fair. But I didn’t add on that. That second part, like it gives us something to think about and something to like, get our mind off of what happened to us that is negative. That wasn’t fair. Like, hey, but what’s good about life? And it’s mostly great.

Alyssa Patmos 3:33
Yes, I like the extension, because most people are taught life isn’t fair. But this gets like the addendum of like, okay, so what do I do with that, then, like, well, you can still do the good things like it. Alright, number two, “When in doubt, just take the next small step.” I once wrote a post about baby steps, I think this is like, I think this is so good. Because if you told a little baby toddler who was trying to walk, that they’re tiny steps where they’re falling, and they’re like learning how to get back up, and they’re like, you know, in one parent’s arms chasing, chasing the other one down, if you told them that those baby steps were worth nothing, they would be very angry. And so I think baby steps are or the next small step, as Regina mentions it are crucial, crucial, crucial. We can’t always, you know, take a step the size of an elephant and the small ones are what lead to the bigger momentum. Anyway.

Geoff 4:34
Yeah, and the child analogy is great because it if a if a child could only settle for like, I’m going to stand up and start walking. They would never it would be a failure, but they don’t do it that way. They get up, they fall down, they get up they fall down. And those baby steps eventually lead to great strides.

Alyssa Patmos 4:53
Yes and half the time when they fall down are laughing about it, which is great. We should do that. Okay, number three, “Life is too short to waste time hating anyone.”

Geoff 5:06
Hmm. I think there’s one about forgiveness later there is, and this ties in to that for me. But it’s easy to get caught up in negative emotions and, and feeling negative about others. And releasing that and letting that go, we can find great joy, but it’s not it’s not easy. Sometimes.

Alyssa Patmos 5:30
I mean, hate is a strong word, just in general, I’ve tried most of my life not to use that word. It’s a very, it’s a very powerful thing and a negative like for, for me in many cases. But I, I, we often live in this world where it’s like, Oh, you did this to me. Like until we work on some of our own emotional things. And we like get clarity over that, you know, we often think that like someone else is doing something to us. And I think that’s a lot of times you know, where the seeds of hate or like resentment start growing is like when you put the blame on some other group or person. And so to me, like, yeah, life is too short to waste time hating anyone and like, what, why are we giving them our power? Like, why are we putting the agency outside of ourselves?

Geoff 6:25
Right, and we choose how we feel we choose what emotional state we’re in, we choose whether we’re thinking positive things or negative things, it ties back to the first one, like, where do we put our focus? Like, oh, life isn’t fair. Or Life is good. And or, like, put my emotions in the hate and focusing on negative things or looking at the positive and we get to choose that every day every moment?

Alyssa Patmos 6:49
Yes, I agree. Okay.

Number four, “Your job won’t take care of you when you’re sick, your friends and parents will; stay in touch.” Okay, I’ll go first. Okay, so I totally agree with the first part, your job won’t take care of you when you’re sick. And no, like they’re like, a salaries there’s a lot of false security in that –

Geoff 7:20
Is this another way of saying like, people on their deathbeds don’t ever talk about wanting to work more? They talk about what –

Alyssa Patmos 7:28
The relationships? Yeah, probably. And you can, you can have really awesome professional relationships, and those people might support you and help you, but it’s not the job itself, not the work itself. This is your friends and parents will So stay in touch, I struggle with this, like there are some people who have great family lives. And so obviously, putting the emphasis on like parents and family can, you know, be supportive and beneficial for them. And and that’s great. I just don’t like it when it makes it seem like those are the only relationships because there’s so much power in the family you choose as well. It doesn’t need to be your parents, because some people have really shitty upbringings. And their parents aren’t available to them for whatever reason. And so putting this like pressure on like, oh, I have to be connected to my parents, I think many times people need boundaries with their parents. So.

Geoff 8:22
I think we could rewrite this for us like, it’s, it’s not about the job. It’s about the relationships, like put your relationships first, whoever that’s with, and it doesn’t have to be the traditional standard. Oh, it’s family first, family first. Like you said, there’s a family you choose. But it’s really about that. It’s like stay in touch, maintain relationships. Those are the things that matter.

Alyssa Patmos 8:43
Right, like not just throwing yourself into like one thing with work, and all of a sudden you blink and it’s like, oh my god, where were the people I care about? Yeah, yeah. Okay. Number five, “Pay off your credit cards every month.” Yes, philosophically, I agree with this debt is incredibly stressful. And we’ve done an episode on money and talking about finances with your partner. It’s with Brittany Ross. And that episode had a ton of great insights that reflect this. And I think it’s also like, we can tend to look at all credit as bad and there are scenarios where it can be helpful, but having the responsibility of knowing like, Okay, I’m not going to keep this around forever, or whatnot, I think can be –

Geoff 9:30
I would say that. I mean, this is getting a little off topic, but don’t take debt on depreciating assets. If it’s an appreciating asset. It makes sense if it’s a home, yes. If it’s your education, so that you’re going to invest in yourself and it’s going to pay dividends down the line. Like those are things that make sense. Yeah, things that are depreciating assets like a TV or a car. Taking out debt on that is not a great idea. And if you do like pay it off, don’t pay more and more Talk about so –

Alyssa Patmos 10:01
I agree. I like the nuance. Nuance is where all the magic isn’t like, because we so often want this black and white picture, black and white thinking of like it is this easy. It’s this or it’s this. But that’s not how life is like I would I think I would add something about that, like around black and white thinking to this list because I don’t think there’s anything in here. I’m gonna make it all the way through.

Geoff 10:23
Maybe it’s fair.

Alyssa Patmos 10:24
Yeah, we didn’t make it all the way through the last half of these are a surprise to us. So what are we on? We’re on number six. “You don’t have to win every argument. Agree to disagree?”

Geoff 10:35
Did you just lean into that? Like, it’s like, that’s we were just saying? I was but the black and white thinking, oh, yeah, there is a one right way. There’s a one answer. Okay.

Alyssa Patmos 10:46
Yeah, I mean, I think this is hard. Because we’re, I mean, so many of us are taught to be agreeable. And at some point that can start to shut off, like our our natural energy to do things in our own way, or to think critically about things and to feel comfort, knowing that if we disagree, we can still be loved. I think ultimately, that’s what it comes down to, like, if there’s a – if it feels like there’s a threat to being loved if we disagree, then like, there becomes this pressure to conform in some ways. And that is not healthy. It’s not healthy for self-expression. It’s not healthy for, you know, getting to experience people’s different viewpoints. And, and, truly, it’s not healthy for evolution.

Geoff 11:41
I think there’s lots of reasons why people may not be willing to agree to disagree, I think that’s one of them. Sometimes it can come from the other end of the spectrum of just feeling like your value is in being right. It’s, your identity is in being the smartest one in the room or always right.

Alyssa Patmos 11:58

Geoff 11:59
So there’s something underlying that, if, if we have to win every argument? What is the saying about, “you can, you can always you can always be right, or you can stay married,” or

Alyssa Patmos 12:15
Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah.

Geoff 12:16
It’s, it’s not that exactly. But like you get to choose if, if you’re the kind of person that you always got to be right and always win every argument, your relationships are going to suffer. So if that’s happening, and we can’t agree to disagree there, you know, what is causing that? What’s the underlying need that you’re trying to have met in that? But this is a huge one of you know, for me and I know for you right now with everyone saying there is one right answer and follow the science agree with this or you’re a bad person. I think this is a huge issue for society right now. And and that’s one of my biggest hopes is that we can get more to an ability to have different opinions and agree to disagree, and be open to hearing other people’s opinions without demonizing them.

Alyssa Patmos 13:01
Yeah, I agree. So number seven, “Cry with someone. It’s more healing than crying alone.” We cry a lot.

Geoff 13:18
Crying yesterday morning, I cried for good hour. Yes. While you held me and you didn’t cry with me. But you, you were there with me. And I needed that. Yeah,

Alyssa Patmos 13:30
I think when – like, crying – I think we didn’t normalize crying more because crying is a natural way for us to release pent up energy and pent up emotion in our bodies. And yet we grew up in a society that’s like, don’t cry, or anytime someone starts crying, they say, you know, it’s okay. Um, and, and there’s so much power in in silence while someone else is crying and just allowing them to do that. I think there’s value in crying by yourself sometimes. But there are really healing things about crying with someone else.

Geoff 14:00
I think we need both. This seems to put a judgment, right. One is better than the other. We do need to heal with other people. And that can accelerate it. We also need to do some solid work and some solo healing and crying so they’re both valuable. But if we shut ourselves off to crying, especially in front of other people, or other people, inadvertently try to shut us down like, “Oh, don’t cry, it’s okay. It’s okay.” It can make that more difficult, right? Whereas if we allow for that and embrace it and leave room for it, it’s much more healing.

Alyssa Patmos 14:33
All right. Eight, “It’s okay to get angry with God, he can take it.” So neither of us are religious. I grew up very religious, but not anymore. But I do believe in spirituality and universal energy and things of that sort. And for me, this one is just saying like, wine is okay to be angry like the first of the first Have a sentence like it’s okay to be angry. But but you can be angry with a force bigger than yourself. And they can hold that. And it doesn’t have to just be you. So for me, it’s like, take something out of isolation, and allows there to be a space bigger than just me for my emotion. I think there’s something restorative about that.

Geoff 15:23
Yeah, I agree with like, it’s okay to be angry. There’s something about this that I don’t like, and that won’t surprise you. But like, like, this idea of this higher authority, whatever that may be, and that they are he, it is so strong and powerful. He can take it, like dump it on him, like, there’s pieces of this I, that I –

Alyssa Patmos 15:45
Yeah, but you think, you’re thinking of it as a higher authority, because like the word God naturally assumes that I don’t think of God as a higher authority. Okay. I think of like, like, ultimately, and Buddhist principles talk about this, like, We are the divine, we are God. And it’s recognizing that our energy comes from that source. And so for me, it’s not putting someone above me, like, parental like, Hold this for me. It’s just like, it can go out there. And there’s more space for it than just –

Geoff 16:13
And I agree with that, the way this is written.

Alyssa Patmos 16:14

Geoff 16:15
To me.

Alyssa Patmos 16:16

Geoff 16:16

Alyssa Patmos 16:17

Geoff 16:18
The former which I don’t resonate with.

Alyssa Patmos 16:20
I’m with you. I just want to adapt them. All. Right. Okay, “Save for retirement, starting with your first paycheck.” I’m just gonna go with Yes, on this.

Geoff 16:31
I mean, I have kids that are getting their first paycheck. So this is a huge one for me. And one of the things where if I made this up, or someone told me, I don’t know, but like, you don’t miss it if you don’t have it. So you get that first paycheck, and you’re like, Oh, I’ll start retiring. Six months later, I start putting it away. You’re used to that X amount in your paycheck, and then it comes out and you’re like, you’re missing it. Versus it comes out in the first paycheck. You never miss it. And it’s fine. And and the compounding effects of that is worth millions. So yes, yes, yes,

Alyssa Patmos 17:02
Yes. And I was fortunate. My grandpa taught me things around investing from a young age. And so that I mean, this has been ingrained in me since I was probably 10. Which is great. And I’m fortunate for having that. I’m number 10. I’d love when it comes to chocolate Resistance is futile. Who can argue with that? Can’t argue with that. Except for I would say dark chocolate because milk chocolate is disgusting.

Geoff 17:31
Well, yeah. Resisting dark chocolate is impossible. Resisting milk chocolate is easy.

Alyssa Patmos 17:37
Is very, very easy for me. But resisting dark chocolate, or as anyone who has followed anything I do for more than 30 days, resisting peanut butter cups or hazelnut butter cups of any sort is futile. Okay, make peace with your past so it won’t screw up the present. Like this is in essence why I have a job. So I agree with when we clear up our pasts. It doesn’t cloud our conversations, it doesn’t cloud our our relationships, our emotions in the same way we have more power instead of it having power over us.

Geoff 18:14
My, our long cry was due to past emotions and everything that triggers us today is based on that. So and it’s an ongoing, there’s never you never accomplish this. You never reached that goal. It’s an ongoing thing. Yes. We work on it daily. And it’s it’s it’s critical to clearing up relationships –

Alyssa Patmos 18:36
And allowing us to be present with each other in the present moment. Um, there’s a theme in here. It’s okay to let your children see you cry. I my mom listens to the show. So hopefully she doesn’t get angry about this. Hi, mom. I think I’ve all I only saw my mom cry before the age of like 17 I think I only saw my mom cry like two times. And she’s very emotional person. But she doesn’t always show it outwardly. Like, I definitely saw my dad cry more more than my mom. But it’s okay to let your children see you cry. And I called my mom the other day. And I told her I was like, Mom, just say, you know, like, if you ever have emotions or feelings like that, you that you need to share, like, like you can you can call me. And I think it’s a gift when we allow others to have that have that expression.

Geoff 19:31
Yeah, and, it’s, it’s interesting. Like, I’m not picking on your mom. But how many people would say their dad cried more than their mom. And how and and usually it’s the reverse like, especially for men like we’re conditioned. Don’t cry, be strong. So we’re told that I like it. We’re taught not to cry. And it can be really damaging when we can cut off part of ourselves from our own selves. Like we’re not even whole when we’re taking that piece of us. It cries and so like we don’t want to ever see you. So it is a gift to let your kids see you cry, and to share that that’s okay. And I hope I’m doing that with my kids.

Alyssa Patmos 20:12
“Don’t compare your life to others, you have no idea what their journey is all about.” We have a great story for this one. My mom told me this story growing up routinely around like, it’s, I’m gonna butcher this. But it’s basically when you’re driving and like someone’s going really slow in front of you or something. And the tendency is to like, want to get super angry with them, like your impatience when driving.

Geoff 20:38
But you’re the same thing.

Alyssa Patmos 20:41
My mom always told me she’s like, “You never know what’s going on for them.” And she, she always told this story of there being a woman driving in front of her and someone told her this story and, and it was like, the woman had a goat, a goldfish bowl in the front seat inserts good and dry fast, because she was trying to get this goldfish bowl home without the water and the fish like falling out everywhere. And to me, this has always been an example of like, you never know what’s going on behind someone’s closed door. You never know what’s going on for someone in in their path.

Geoff 21:13
Yeah, that’s absolutely true. I, I feel like this is talking about comparing ourselves, which in my mind is like, Oh, if I only had as much as if I was only six, why are they so successful? Why am I beating you know, beat myself up? I’m not where they are. But But same thing applies. We just don’t know what their path was, what opportunities they were handed when, why. And I guess it could work in the opposite way of feeling superior to someone and comparing yourselves like, oh, yeah, and I’m not, I’m not that. But we don’t know their path. And it was different than ours. And we’re handed a lot of luck or circumstances that are outside of our control. So we really shouldn’t compare ourselves so much and feel superior or less than someone else because their path was entirely different.

Alyssa Patmos 22:03
Yes, and I would say that, along those lines of comparison, some of the some spiritual writings talk about this, because there are many different paths to you know, enlightenment, or there. And there are many different paths to healing. And some people will say, if you if you hear someone’s story around their path, and the way that they did it, it can be really easy to compare and say, well, like, Okay, if I just do this, then the same thing will happen to me. And that’s very rarely true. Because we all have our own way that our challenges our struggles, you know, our, our desires have to have to play out. Okay. What are we on?

Geoff 22:48
Oh, goodness, number 14, “If a relationship has to be a secret, you shouldn’t be in it.” I agree with this.

Yeah, I think, well, I would just expand it more. And this is a challenge. And I do I think I recognize the privilege of where I am where I can kind of put myself out there. Not just a relationship, but anything you do think or say, any part of your lifestyle, like if it has to be a secret. Like, we should just be okay with anything we do think or feel. And if you have to hide that from people, there’s something that isn’t optimal. Now, I know that that’s an ideal that isn’t easy for everyone, Chief, it’s not even easy for me to achieve. And I don’t fully live that way. But like, it has to be a secret. Then what’s going on?

Alyssa Patmos 23:38
Right? But I would add that that’s not always a personal thing. Like yes, I agree with you, like from a self-expression standpoint, especially like, yes, like, if it has to be a secret what the question is what’s going on? Like this is this is saying, like, think this is just talking about, like, romantic relationships. And if it has to be a secret, you shouldn’t be in it. And I get what you’re saying. But also, then that means that there could be something systemically wrong, that is making it so people can’t be who they are. So –

Geoff 24:06
It points us to like, why can’t I be me and have that be out there? And if this also reminds me that like the old saying, “If, if you if you can’t handle your mom reading in the newspaper, then don’t do it.” Yeah. And that’s that’s true like, but that is not easy. And it’s something to strive for, to get to the point where we can accept people judging us hearing something that they don’t want to hear about us potentially losing friends. Like that’s, that’s a tough one. But I it’s something that I try to keep in mind and strive for, like, if I’m willing to do it, then I’m willing to have people know that I –

Alyssa Patmos 24:43
But for certain things that are more extreme consequences. And that would be reasons

Geoff 24:48
And I mentioned privilege, like I don’t have a job where I can get fired because of some lifestyle choice I make or something so it’s not always that easy.

Alyssa Patmos 24:56
Right. It just leads to questions around like okay, why, why is this the case? And am I okay making this choice? And how does that making that choice make me feel about me? Think are the important things that can come from from that. Okay? Everything can change in the blink of an eye. But don’t worry, God never blinks. Okay, so there’s religious undertones in this one. But I, I genuinely agree that everything can change in the blink of an eye. I’ve been shown that various times throughout my life. And those have always been pivotal moments and powerful moments. And it just reminds us to not claim so much to this picture or this identity. Because if everything’s malleable, it changes.

Geoff 25:42
Well, and your situation changes and what happens around you changes. But there’s probably like, there’s something that doesn’t change maybe your core like who you are, what you believe in, that doesn’t need to change, but the stuff around us can all change in a blink of an eye.

Alyssa Patmos 25:58
Yes. All right. “Take a breath. It calms the mind.” As I take a breath. It’s a good reminder. Yeah, taking breath is important.

Geoff 26:14
Yeah, and we talked about this as it relates to conflict with us. We talked about it yesterday. I’m a real strong believer in this. And it helps me like to get away to take a breath, step back, reflect. We can get so caught up in emotions and in the moment, and get clouded and get triggered. And with any situation. And taking a taking a deep breath and kind of relaxing the nervous system. And reflecting and coming back for me almost always provides a great benefit for my clarity of thought.

Alyssa Patmos 26:54
Yeah, I think so many times, like we get caught up in shallow breathing, like when we’re driving like, when we’re not, you can get caught in shallow breathing, doing literally anything, so can be good to remember that we need oxygen flowing through our body and that these deep breaths really offer a lot of benefits to our nervous system and how we move. I mean, when I catch myself in shallow breathing, and then I take a deep breath, like sometimes I just feel my spine back into place, which is obviously an indicator that I breathe too shallowly. Too often, but that’s okay. Um… 17, “Get rid of anything that isn’t useful, beautiful or joyful.”

Geoff 27:38
This, for me, this is minimalism, which we tend to live and before I met you, I started on a path of that reducing clutter, like, and I know this is more than just our living space. But for me that that’s what what the sparks for me the thought of like, getting rid of stuff and and they’re really looking around the apartment on an ongoing basis, knowing like, what is what is the purpose of that thing there that’s taking space? And if I don’t have it, like, get rid of it. So reducing clutter in our lives, what and that can be physical, it can also be emotional. Yep. Big fan of that.

Alyssa Patmos 28:20
18, Whatever doesn’t kill you really does make you stronger.” Yeah, I mean, ever. I think everything is designed to make us stronger. It’s all about perception and how we look at it.

Geoff 28:31
I used to say this, I think there’s some nuance to that, like, there is a lot of these in general. Yes. Like, the trials and tribulations. Adversity makes us stronger. And we the things that used to look like an unscalable mountain, but we’re younger, and when then we scale it the first time and we do it a couple more times. And now it’s easy, right? Like so in and now we can get the higher higher levels. There is some piece of this at an extreme, there are things that are toxic to us. Especially like physically that can weaken us forever. There are toxins we can ingest, or be exposed to like physically, it doesn’t kill us, but it could literally cripple us or make us immunocompromised or so. To extract to an extreme extent or like like smoking cigarettes for 20 years may not kill you, but it’s not making you strong. Okay, so there’s some nuance to that, but I think what she’s trying to point out is more of the first first part of it like adversity, something difficult. Yeah. Can make us stronger.

Alyssa Patmos 29:38
Yes. Okay. It’s never too late to have a happy childhood, but the second one is up to you and no one else.

Geoff 29:48
So many good things in that. Yeah, I love that one.

Alyssa Patmos 29:52
Yeah, this one is great. I mean, it what what we went through as a kid is definitely you know, we didn’t have control over that, in many ways, we’re dependent on our parents or the people who are supporting us in raising us. And we’re just trying to learn and grow and adapt to what’s going on. But we do get to choose how we perceive that once were older, and how we live our life and how we reflect back on it, and what we, what we choose to heal from the wounds that come from the past. And we get to choose, like if we, the areas of our life where we do grow up. And I’m a firm believer that there are certain areas where like, when we can tap into wonder and delight of kids, like we’re not supposed to grow up in those areas.

Geoff 30:35
Yeah. Like, that’s one of the key messages here. Like, don’t give up on being a kid. Yeah. And my mom is an inspiration for me on this. She’s a before but she acts like she’s 13. And I just find joy and wonder in that. And like we talked about, we try to find ways to be kids and do some skipping or dancing are silly things like we grow up too early. And we’re told, like adults don’t act that way or this way. But we lose some of the wonder and the joy of being a kid. And we can come back to that later in life. We can come back to that as adults. Yes, absolutely. And it’s up to us. Like that’s the other thing I love in this message. Like, yeah, it’s not it’s not other people’s responsibilities to make us feel happy and joyful. Like we get to drive that completely internally,

Alyssa Patmos 31:22
Right, like as a kid, we have to put things outside of ourselves because we don’t have the skills yet. But as an adult, we don’t have to put everything outside of ourselves, we can reclaim it back in. And self agency is a magical force. Alright, when it comes to going after what you love in life, don’t take no for an answer.

Geoff 31:47
Follow your passion, you know, do what you love. Absolutely. And in life. There are a lot of naysayers. There’s a lot of people lining up to say no and why that won’t work. A lot of that is rooted in people’s fears, their own fears, like oh, no, don’t take that risk,

Alyssa Patmos 32:06
Or their own or their own jealousy because they’re too scared to follow what they say on my level. Someone else? Yes.

Geoff 32:12
Yeah, so if you can find the people that build you up that don’t tell you to take Rick reckless risks, but like support your risk taking support your passion, support you and say yes, more than they say no. And don’t project their fears on you. Like find those people, surround yourself with those people and keep them close by for counsel.

Alyssa Patmos 32:37
Yeah, but I also have some things around, follow your passion and do what you love. Like, you don’t have to find your passion, like part of that is living in the moment. Like living what you love in the moment doesn’t have to be this grand thing where the whole picture of your life, you have to know exactly what you love and follow this one thing for forever. And that’s what you do and stick your whole identity on. Like back to the thing where things change. I don’t know which number that was but, but what you love can change too. And that’s okay. And and being willing to let go of some things that you no longer love. Because you have newfound loves, I think is is great.

Geoff 33:14
But do what you love. And if you find yourself not doing that, and you see something else that excites you like, Yeah, go for it. Yes.

Alyssa Patmos 33:24
All right, “Burn the candles, use the nice sheets and wear the fancy lingerie. Don’t save it for a special occasion. Today is special.” I’m a fan this one. Because why have it, you’re not gonna use it. So life is worth celebrating, you know, on any given day, not just on the prescribed days. So I’m a fan.

Geoff 33:46
There’s balance in here. There’s taking this to an extreme. But I’m also the same way like I spend a lot of my money. I don’t just squirrel it all away. And we like to dress nice on a Tuesday night and like, yeah, today’s special live in the moment and you don’t know what’s gonna happen tomorrow.

Alyssa Patmos 34:04
Yes, I agree. Okay. And I learned really quick. We either have to go faster, or we have to do two parts.

Geoff 34:11
It’s your podcast. Let’s do two parts.

Alyssa Patmos 34:17
We can go for –

Geoff 34:19
Rewind, this is part one –

Alyssa Patmos 34:21
We can go – we’ll just get there when we get there. But we might have to do two parts.

Geoff 34:26
Yeah, okay.

Alyssa Patmos 34:28
All right. 22, “Over-prepare and then go with the flow.” This is not how I operate. Just go with the flow. I am very prepared in the sense that like I’m constantly thinking about something that I have to do like when I was working with your team the other day I you know, like in the shower, I was mentally rehearsing what I needed to go across but that was the extent of the preparation for that. But I trust the preparation that I’ve done over the years to get there. So I’m generally more of a go with flow person on some dimensions. So I don’t know about this, but –

Geoff 35:08
Yeah, this is this is a tough one. I think generally I agree with that. Like when I’ve had things that I feel like I need to prepare for if I’m really over prepared, and then I can go in and not have something rehearsed and like, I just know, I feel it. I know it. Because I’m so prepared. Like, I think that is generally works for me as well. I can sometimes over prepare, I can, like sometimes spend too much time preparing for something so –

Alyssa Patmos 35:39
Yeah, there’s some I don’t know that this is one of the, I don’t know that this would make the list for me.

“Be eccentric now, don’t wait for old age to wear purple.” I love this one. It supports self expression. And I think it’s great and so many of us you know like as kids it’s like Crazy hair day at school and you don’t give a shit and then as you get older we get this like -[On screen, Geoff is shown playing with the ripped strings from Alyssa’s distressed jeans. Respond to Geoff, Alyssa says:] You can’t play me like a fiddle.

Geoff 36:08
She’s, she’s got this wonderful like cut-out in her jean and it’s so fun for me to just like play with it

Alyssa Patmos 36:16

Geoff 36:16
So I am playing with it and it feels to her like it’s a fiddle. Okay. Hands to yourself, young man.

Alyssa Patmos 36:25
Yeah, so: “Be eccentric. now. Don’t wait for old age to wear purple.”

Geoff 36:30
Well, this is back to my mom and like the shit she wears. And just being a kid back to being a kid. And yeah, because kids don’t care until they’re socialized to care. And then everyone like makes fun of someone and it’s like, oh, then I can’t be me. I love people. I look up to people that are just like, Wow, you are being you. And that’s crazy. And yeah, good for you. And I wish we all did more that we all conform to much.

Alyssa Patmos 36:56
I, yeah, I agree. And yes, I agree. Now for me, it’s not like necessarily wearing something crazy for me. Like eccentricity probably comes in, like other ways I can get stuff but –

Geoff 37:08
No, this can be ideas. This can be thoughts, ideas, values, things you do, obviously things you wear, but it’s all of that. But it’s just this idea of like, we’re all individuals. And this is just like tying in multiple ones. But like, agree to disagree. Let people you you want to wear that or you want to have that thought like that seems crazy to me, but like good, good for you. And I don’t need you to be like me. Right? And there’s not one right way.

Alyssa Patmos 37:36
Yes, yes, yes, yes. 24. I wish I could have asked her like what she meant by this one. Because I’m really curious. I know what it means to me and probably to you too. But I’m super curious. So 24, “The most important sex organ is the brain.” I’m a sapiosexual, like –

Geoff 37:56
Yeah. So that’s, that’s what comes to mind. I think any sapiosexual is going to be like yes, that –

Alyssa Patmos 38:01

Geoff 38:01
And that is like, I remember being a kid or even an adult and like, trying to figure out like, Why does sex feel so good? Like, what is the magical thing? Because you can masturbate and it’s feels good. And there’s something there. But then at least like, Why does actual sex like these 100 times? It’s good. Like, what is that? And it’s because Okay, and it can’t just be physical, right? Because it’s like, well, I can kind of mirror that or something, but it’s not as good. And it’s the brain. And it’s –

Alyssa Patmos 38:36

Geoff 38:37

Alyssa Patmos 38:37
There’s a huge role in that, whether it’s like, even from an intimacy perspective, but even Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. I agree.

Geoff 38:44
Yeah, so I think there’s different meanings like said that the brain can make the physical part feel good, but then sapiosexual is just like being turned on by intellect. And by so someone interesting that someone stimulates your brain. Yeah. So yeah.

Alyssa Patmos 39:02
“No one is in charge of your happiness, but you.” I’m a firm believer in this one. We’re responsible for our, we’re responsible for our own happiness and for getting our needs met. And sometimes we recruit people into our vision, and our world to help us meet those needs or to you know, add to the experience, but at the end of the day, we’re responsible for ourselves were responsible for our happiness and I think many people have to learn this lesson different ways and numerous times over but at the end of the day, like I totally believe no one is in charge of my happiness but me.

Geoff 39:44
Yeah, but going back time, actually other things we talked about about like healing past wounds. I believe this as you know, and I would never at this point in my life, given my past relationships, let someone put on me Like, a feeling of like, I’m in charge of their happiness. And I strongly believe I’m in charge of my own happiness. It’s not your responsibility. But as you know, a part of me that’s like, even repressed a little, like, puts on me your happiness like I put it on myself.

Alyssa Patmos 40:18
Yeah. Well, people pleasing comes in. And there are many different ways. Yeah.

Geoff 40:22
And so I need to work on like, giving – and you help me with this. You remind me like, it’s not my responsibility. And if and if I make you upset, it’s not the end of the world. It’s okay.

Alyssa Patmos 40:36
Yeah, it’s almost like it needs an addendum like, “No one is in charge of your happiness but you and everyone else is in charge of their own happiness, too.” Because it can be like, it can be easy to take it on, like, oh, yeah, I know, I’m in charge of my happiness. But then, like, if we feel the threat of anything like okay, well, now I have to make you super happy to and I’m responsible for that. But no, like everyone else is in is in charge of their own happiness as well.

Geoff 41:03
Yeah, I feel like this could be a podcast in itself. Maybe it’s a future idea. But like I because I do think I think while most people are nodding their heads on this, I think there’s some people that at least internally are kind of like, I don’t fully buy into that. Like, like –

Alyssa Patmos 41:18
But it’s all of these messages that that, “you complete me”. Oh, my God, that makes me want to barf. Like, that is a disgusting phrase. And it should never be on anything. And I don’t use the word “never” lightly.

Geoff 41:33
Or, “Where’s your better half?”

Alyssa Patmos 41:34
No, that is a disgusting phrase!

Geoff 41:36
But but there are a lot of people that that have grown up thinking that’s the way it is, or they truly believe –

Alyssa Patmos 41:42
It’s hard not to think that because every single message and most romcoms even in most TV shows now. That’s the underlying message. It’s gross.

Geoff 41:53
Yeah. And again, I think that’s a whole whole nother topic to explore. How does it happen? Why and how do you get out of that? Yeah. And why is that dangerous? Because there’s, there’s a part of that, that just sounds so great, like, appealing that Yes. And like, of course, this is part of a relationship, we are responsible, we have a job to keep our partner happy, like, so.

Alyssa Patmos 42:15
We’re gonna have to an episode on it. Because because there’s a lot of nuance in there. Okay. Um, “Frame every so called disaster with these words, “In five years, will this matter?”” I like this one. It’s a good perspective shift. Like, sometimes, you know, we talk about healing a lot. We talked about, you know, reframing things from the past. And sometimes the quickest thing you can do is something simple and it’s just like a quick reframe. And I think this question is good one to help with that.

Geoff 42:48
I struggled with this one a little more, like, I don’t know, I’m not sure I would argue against it. But five years is a long time. First of all, and like, if I’m in the middle of my shit, or I’m in pain, like I don’t care, like, in five years is gonna matter right now. You know, because I think you can even take like a long relationship. And say, that you that you really value and love. And he say, like, if we broke up, if you left me in five years is gonna matter. It probably won’t like I’m going to be over it by then I’m going to be on I’m maybe meet someone new. That doesn’t make it trivial. And it doesn’t mean trivial right now. So I think the underlying theme here of like, put things in perspective, is it as big as it feels like it is? And is it really going to matter in the scheme of things? Good, healthy question that the specific five year thing?

Alyssa Patmos 43:39
Well, maybe I would switch this one to more so around what’s in our control? Because I could be like, what is actually in my control? And then let the other things fade away? Yeah, that would be more that would be more impactful for you have that one on the list?

Yeah. Okay, this one, 27: “Always choose life.” I love this.

Geoff 44:09
What does that mean?

Alyssa Patmos 44:09
I love this one. What does that give me that every second we are both simultaneously living and dying. Because the second we’re born, you know, we’re on a pathway and eventually we’re gonna die. And so in every single moment, we’re living and dying at the same time and we can choose the dying side. Or we can choose life and to focus on the evolution regardless of what the end outcome is. So for me, always choosing life is choosing the journey not getting lost in the past it’s choosing the present moment. It’s it’s choosing growth. Like those words can be smart and missed me at time. So.

Geoff 44:54
Yeah, this one fries my brain when I don’t play understand what you’re saying what you’re saying makes sense. And yes, But I don’t know, like who’s choosing death?

Alyssa Patmos 45:03
Well, I mean, sometimes it’s easy when we get trapped in old patterns or when we’re feeling like down and depressed. Like, it’s just like Think positive like, yeah, no, it’s not just thinking about it like I am. I’m so anti toxic, toxic positivity, like, we are not meant to think positive and every single freaking moment. So it’s not that but it’s about choosing that life has seasons, life has ups and downs. Like if you look at how a plant grows, you know, a tree in the middle of winter is going to have bear leaves, but then it’s going to rebloom and in the spring, and it’s recognizing that life has those patterns, so definitely not toxic.

Geoff 45:42
But isn’t that not always choosing life? Because like the tree like that, that every year the leafs need doesn’t die,

Alyssa Patmos 45:50
No! The tree itself doesn’t die, leaves fall, they die not because they’re not connected to the source anymore.

Geoff 46:00
The source is alive –

Alyssa Patmos 46:01
The leaf itself falls –

Geoff 46:03
Or okay. And it’s gross. Like, it’s like, you gotta shed that to grow new in the –

Alyssa Patmos 46:07

Geoff 46:08
Okay, good.

Alyssa Patmos 46:09
Yes. Okay. Let’s see here. Okay, I think we’re gonna have to do part two, because we still have a bunch to get through. And I don’t want this to be an hour and a half episode. So we’re gonna do part two, but because you mentioned this next one, we’re gonna end on this one. So 28, “Forgive everyone, everything.”

Geoff 46:35
I love this one, like this one speaks to me in the way it’s written. Because we all know, we’re supposed to forgive and forget, but like, Yeah, but this this is so absolute this one. To me. It’s, it’s so bold, that it for me, it makes me go like, like, realize how profound it is. It’s, it’s not forgive some people, it’s not trying to forgive, it’s forgive everyone, everything. So any, anything that that you view as negative as someone did to you, that hurt you. Finding a way to forgive everyone, everything. And for me, this just go what’s going on in my life and my healing. This resonates with me, and it feels like the path for me to get to the next level of healing for me and peel away the next level and then or the next layer of the onion. So I, I love this. And I think it is so hard, but I believe there’s so much wisdom in it. Because if we hold on to grievances, and we don’t forgive people, that’s only harming ourselves, and it really is.

Alyssa Patmos 47:44
But I so, I agree with this one wholeheartedly as well. I think the way it’s phrased is even beautiful, similar fret for why it resonates with you like it is absolute, but it’s absolute in a way that gives you your power back. Because we’re not forgiving, it’s it’s putting it outside of ourselves. And so if you forgive everyone, everything, like you can return to your center in a different way.

Geoff 48:09
And the power thing that’s, you’re absolutely right, like when we’re holding on to anger. Or we don’t forgive someone we’re giving them control over our lives and our emotion and our state now. And when we forgive, we take that power back completely.

Alyssa Patmos 48:26
The thing that I think is important to add here, because so many messages of forgiveness, especially in, in circles, where it’s highlighted as like a core tenant, I think there’s this pressure, like you have to forgive someone immediately. Or, or, you know, it’s like forgiveness can almost become this like part of going through the motions. And I don’t believe to forgiveness happens like that. And, and there is like, being able to forgive someone quicker happens when you work on your own emotions and like your own fears and how you hold on to things. So for me, there’s always the goal of like being able to forgive someone quicker, but also recognizing that like, I can’t have asked forgiveness, like to truly forgive, you gotta be able to truly forgive. And that might not happen overnight. That might not happen for a year. It might not happen for 10 years. But as long as you’re working towards forgiving everyone, everything, I think we expand rather than constricting our life.

Geoff 49:34
Yeah, and it’s all relative to the amount of pain that you have associated with with that grievance that you’re holding on to and you know, someone stepping on your foot, you can you can release that and forgive them instantly. A partner for 20 years that caused you a lot of pain. It can take a while longer and I believe it should like maybe there’s this –

Alyssa Patmos 49:58
Oh no, you take that back right now!

Geoff 50:01
Oh, yeah, we don’t say “should”, right?

Alyssa Patmos 50:02
I know! There’s no prescription –

Geoff 50:04
Well, I was about to –

Alyssa Patmos 50:04
No, I’m gonna fight you on this.

Geoff 50:06
No, would you let me finish now? Let me finish what I was gonna say is like, I said “maybe we should”, I’ll take that back. But like maybe there is a a higher level of enlightenment that I’m not at yet where we can really release something deep seated much more quickly. I’m not there yet. So I’m practicing what you’re doing I’m doing it a little bit each day trying to, and it’s taking me some time for some of the deeper, deeper wounds. And that’s okay. But yes, there’s probably a way

Alyssa Patmos 50:37
I just am anti the “should” on that because there is not one right way or one pathway for someone to go through that at all and something that was longer if you all of a sudden have a breakthrough and you’ve released, you know, the core of that in some way. It doesn’t have to take one. So it does not. It does not have to go for any duration of time.

Geoff 51:01
Yes. And that being said, on average, if deeper wounds take longer, that’s not surprising, and we don’t need it to be an instant release. And I think what you were pointing out is we can kind of kid ourselves with like, Oh, I just forgive like, okay, deciding today to forgive. It’s it has to be a real forgiveness, a genuine release, and a genuine forgiveness. And yeah, that isn’t always something we can just kick out. Yeah,

Alyssa Patmos 51:25
I think the way it’s like it can take as long as it needs to take and that’s okay, whether it’s quick or whether it’s longer than it doesn’t have to be long. Yes. Okay, what is 45? Minus 28? Okay, we have 17 more of these, which we will do in part two. I’m super excited. The disappointing thing for me right now is these are all the ones that we’ve been through before. Like we had gotten to you, and I –

Geoff 51:56
And I’m glad we’re gonna get surprised by the other ones. Like, yeah, yeah. Although it was interesting, like new ideas came up and new thoughts when we did it the second time, but it’ll be interesting. The other ones we haven’t seen.

Alyssa Patmos 52:07
Yes, we haven’t seen that at all. So join us next week for part two of the wisdom from 90 year old Regina Brett and 45 lessons that life taught her and Geoff and I’s commentary on what they mean to us and what we’re taking away from it and what we’re not. And as always, thank you for tuning in, and we will catch you next week.

You’ve just finished listening to another episode of Make It Mentionable with me, your host, Alyssa Patmos. If you’re looking for more in between episodes, then sign up for The Peel. It’s my free newsletter that gives tips for how to navigate whatever life dishes and it’s also the place where I share the juiciest of stories. To check it out, head on over to Alyssapatmos.com/thepeel. Thank you so much for tuning in, and I’ll see you next time.

Transcribed by https://otter.ai

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