Nine great lessons from audrey hepburnRanked by the American Film Institute as the third greatest female screen legend and famed globally as icon of film and fashion, Audrey Hepburn received accolade after accolade throughout her life. Throughout her career, she won multiple Academy, Emmy, Grammy, Tony and BAFTA Awards and devoted so much of her own time to working with UNICEF to relieve the suffering of disadvantaged communities across the world that she was also awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

Despite being the child of Nazi sympathisers, she is known not only for her beauty but for her extensive humanitarian efforts.

She died at the age of 63 in 1993, a role model not just for those looking to act but for those looking to create a kinder, more loving world.

“I honestly think it’s the thing I like most, to laugh. It cures a multitude of ills.” – The most important thing you can possibly do with your life is enjoy it. Find people, find things, find videos that make you laugh and be with them as much as you can.

“True beauty in a woman is reflected in her soul. It’s the caring that she lovingly gives, the passion that she shows.” – Since Hepburn’s peak, the world has not got any less shallow. People judge others based on the slightest flaw. Remember, when critiquing yourself and others, that what makes a person beautiful is the way they react to the world and the way they treat the people around them.

“You can tell more about a person by what he says about others than you can by what others say about him.” – The measure of a person is not in their looks or abilities or skills or even success. But in the way that they treat the people around them – they people the love, the people they work with, the people they barely know.

“Why change? Everyone has his own style. When you have found it, you should stick to it.” – Don’t ever let anyone tell you that you shouldn’t do something that expresses who you are. Do what suits you, and don’t let anyone else’s opinion matter. You have one life in which to be as totally, fully you as possible.

“People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed and redeemed; never throw out anyone.” – No matter how much stuff you have, no matter how expensive it, it’s not really valuable. Not to your life. It can’t comfort you, it can’t listen to you, it can’t love you. If you’re going to choose anything to devote your effort into maintaining, make it the relationships you have with the people who care most about it.

“The best thing to hold onto in life is each other.” – People are the most precious things we have. Having other people around you can make your sorrows easier to bear and your joys greater to celebrate. Don’t waste any opportunity to connect to someone.

“Success is like reaching an important birthday and finding you’re exactly the same.” – The biggest downside to achieving all your goals is finding that suddenly you have nothing to do. You have nothing left to work towards. Everything that inspired your motivation is gone. Don’t get so carried away with the idea of winning that you forget how important the journey is, and how much fun.

“I realise that most of us live on the skin – on the surface – without appreciating just how wonderful it is simply to be alive at all.” – A lot of people don’t appreciate the depth of reality. They don’t stop to think about the impossibility of so much in this strange and complicated universe because they see it only as normal. Take a moment, every so often, to look deeper into the things in your life and really appreciate their existence.

“The most important thing is to enjoy your life – to be happy – it’s all that matters.” – This likely is the only chance you get to appreciate, to understand, to experience this world. Make the most of it.

Kirstie Summers,

Daily Zen.

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