Life is simple — if you know what you’re doing. If not, you’ll probably be lost for a while and one day, you’ll slowly start to find your way. Wouldn’t it be easier if people who have already found their way could just share their secrets with you?

The following 10 items are life lessons my mom deemed most paramount to one’s ultimate success in life — a.k.a. advice to live by. Everyone should take at least one for the road — Mom’s orders.

1. Do not accumulate problems in your life. In other words, don’t leave any problem unsolved. Otherwise, your worries and stress will only multiply, possibly deterring you from your solid track to success.

2. Do not delay today’s work. Today’s work should be accomplished today, for tomorrow is another sun, bringing more obligations you must attend to.

3. “Make it small, it’s smaller. Make it big, it’s bigger.” Life’s trivial problems are usually magnified by anxiety. In other words, it’s all in the mind. Whether you want to minimize or maximize a problem in your life is all in your hands. If you exaggerate the problems in your life, you will encounter a beast devouring your tranquility. So minimize them instead. You can simply stomp out this or that worry and continue on with your daily happiness.

4. Life basically amounts to an accumulation of minutes. Ask yourself if you are using each and every minute wisely. You can ask questions like “Will this benefit my health, increase my knowledge, enhance my spirituality or earn me money?” If the answer is no to all, then leave it for it will not benefit you. No one can guarantee how many minutes you have, so use them wisely.

5. Give in proportion to what is deserved. Only spend time with people and on matters that are worthy of your time. That’s all.

6. Life is beautiful. Enjoy the work you do. You are doing it for your growth and happiness. Your life will be beautiful if it is a source of enjoyment rather than a burden. Remember to visualize your goal so you know the hard work you’re exerting is worth it.

7. What you’re doing now will reach you tomorrow. Or as my sixth grade teacher, Mr. Fitzpatrick, used to say, “The report cards of today are the paychecks of tomorrow.”

8. Don’t waste what is necessary for what is unnecessary. Friends will not give you their health or money because you put them first, nor will your boss. Spend time with friends and do favors for others but not at the expense of your aspirations.

9. You will be treated according to where you place yourself. It’s simple: If you put your needs last, people will put you last on their list of priorities. If you treat yourself with dignity and love, people will follow your example.

10. “To be happy for mere seconds, I might be miserable for many years.” Do what is good for you, not what makes you happy in the short term. Sometimes your fleeting desires don’t bar your path to success, but most of the time they do.

11 (BONUS). Patience is the foundation for all of the advice I just gave.

“Do this and don’t forget to wash the dishes” is what we usually hear from our parents, but what I’ve provided here are 10 lessons from a wise woman. These 10 adages are what she would call the “butter” of life’s most valuable lessons. So, eat your butter, kids!