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my best advice in six words

The Best Advice in Six Words

I got a very nice email the other day saying, “We’re delighted to feature your words in the latest book from the SixWord series, The Best Advice in Six Words. Your advice was selected from tens of thousands of memoirs in consideration via sixwordmemoirs.comFacebookTwitter, LinkedIn, and Quora.”


Honestly, I couldn’t remember what I submitted. The whole thing sounded vaguely familiar and I kind of remembered writing something but I had absolutely no idea what it possibly could have been. (Six-word advice for the future: Keep a record of your work.)

So I was very happy when my contributor’s copy of the book came today, although I was a little nervous to find out what I wrote.

Best Advice in Six Words letter

Of course, they don’t tell you what page your contribution is on (page 154 for future reference) so I skimmed through the whole book, looking for my name and getting more concerned as I read well-thought-out entries by some of my favorite writers like Elizabeth Gilbert (“Chances are, your editor is right”), Ayelet Waldman (“A heartfelt apology resolves most conflicts”) and Graydon Carter (“No more writing without getting paid”).

And then I found mine.

My Six Word Advice


It may not be the advice I would have given at a younger age and it may not be the most profound but, hey, it’s worked for me.

I’ve always loved the Six-Word series — I think the whole idea is brilliant — and I’m actually really proud to be included in this book among big names like Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, Maria Shriver and Julianne Moore. There are so many clever entries, and if you followed only the advice submitted here, you’d be in pretty good shape for life.

But I bet you can come up with some more.

In fact, if you leave your own six-word advice in the comments, you may win a copy of the book. For a second chance to win, Tweet this:

Contest ends on November 15 at midnight Pacific time. Prize can only be sent to a U.S. mailing address.

My best six-word advice for this contest? Can’t win if you don’t enter.


  1. Robin (Masshole Mommy) says:

    Congratulations, that’s awesome. How exciting that must have been to find out you were featured.

  2. I have never tried this, but I think this is fun. I’ll try to come up with something.

  3. Cool book and I bet there are some really great ones in there. I’m going to check that book out!

  4. I am thrilled, thrilled, thrilled for you! And, quite frankly, that is some very useful wisdom you shared! Haven’t we all been there, at some point, on a road trip or sporting venue, wishing we had used the clean bathroom back at the dinner?

    OK, here are my 6:
    Make time daily for some laughter.

    Congratulations, my friend! xo

  5. You and I? We think alike. I never under-estimate a clean potty. Nope. Especially after a couple days on the road.

  6. Congrats! I have to keep better records, too. In fact. That’s my six words. Keep good records of your life.

  7. Congrats! I always have to pee so that speaks to me-LOL!

  8. This is so, so cool! And challenging. One of my favorite bloggers – Coach Daddy – does monthly six word challenges. They are hard! I usually just have to answer without thinking and go with that.

  9. Rachelle J says:

    How very exciting for you, congrats! My best advice is 6 words is “When the opportunity presents itself, dance” 🙂

  10. Thank you for the highlight of my day so far! I think your words were brilliant. First of all, they’re true – especially when traveling! I can’t think of how many times I’ve been in a foreign country praying for that very thing. And they’re funny, and who couldn’t use a good laugh? Lois, a little nugget of your wisdom lies in that book.
    Kimberly XO

  11. Love this!
    My six words of advice: Do not believe everything you think!

  12. Well, aren’t you the clever one! I LUV it! Here’s one I just came up with: Life is short. Always wear heels.

  13. This is a great book. I love the one about cookies. That one is so me.

  14. I love the concept of this! Six words is long enough to make a statement, but short enough for me to potentially remember the jist! And, truth be told, I think you doled out a very important piece of advice! lol I think I’d go with something like, “Live life like it ends tomorrow.” 🙂

  15. Too awesome! These pieces of advice are perfect. I always tell my kids to ‘Pee at each every opportunity!”.

  16. Oh wow this is awesome – what a great sounding little read as well! x

  17. Hey, it’s not bad advice! Congratulations on being featured, that’s pretty neat!

  18. It’s so cool that you were featured in this book! I like your advice. It would be fun to read through these!

  19. jessica marinaccio says:

    That is so cool to be featured in a book- heck Im happy if Im featured on a website. Go YOU !!!!

  20. Kimberly Dickerson says:

    How exciting Lois! And I definitely agree with your advice 😊 Congrats!

  21. I entered. Here’s mine. Make hay while the sun shines.

  22. Congratulations!! How awesome to be featured!!
    Mine would probably be: laughing till you pee! ( k, not six but it’s totally something I say!)

  23. Sounds like an interesting concept. Things like this inspire me.

  24. Congrats Ms “Published Author” … these are all great words of advice. My 6 words of advice would be “Smart people say nothing at all.”

  25. Congratulations! Very cool!

    My six words of advice? Write it down or you’ll forget.

  26. My six words: Be kind to animals for life. Love this book idea and I’d love a copy

  27. How exciting! That is very cool, you should be so proud! I love it too, I love clean bathrooms! This sounds really cool!

  28. We talked about this book at work the other day. A lot of my coworkers love it.

  29. That’s awesome news! And I totally ‘get’ the ‘write your stuff down’ advice. Boy, do I. 😉

  30. This sounds like a great book. I will have to think about what my advice would be. I think Don’t be so hard on yourself is a good one,.

  31. How cool! I would love to have a few words in a book someday! Great job

  32. That is awesome that you were featured! Here is my advice: “Life’s too short, stay up late”

  33. Wow there sure are a lot of advice in just six words. Who would have thought and guess what, I loved yours because I would never pass up a clean bathroom.

  34. Life’s more than money and status.

  35. Congratulations. I am glad they used your quote along with other famous writers. I wouldn’t pass up a clean bathroom either 🙂

  36. I happen to think your advice has a LOT of merit–some of the public bathrooms out there–ugh!! Congratulations in being included in this compilation! At the moment my mind is a blank when it come to 6 word advise but maybe — When all fails, ask your pet!

  37. I guess this is a statement and not advice… Better over the hill than under.

    BTW, and a bit O.T. I loved the recording/video of “Midnight at the Oasis”. I have an LP album with Ella singing it. Unfortunately, I have nothing to play my collection on…sigh.
    So obviously we’re not of the same generation, but I’m still here 😎 Cheers…

  38. Nothing reveals beauty like a smile.

  39. Congratulations. And that is great advice!

  40. Congratulations! I teach my students to write 6-word memoirs and they love it! Thank you for reminding me about this so I make sure we do it this year too!

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