1) Love yourself. ( Don't wait for others to love you. If they do, be grateful )
No one can love you more than yourself. Not even your parents, siblings, spouse. So stop sulking and waiting for others to pamper you. Think about your well-being irrespective of emotions.
Self-love is a primary need. It is not narcissism. It is being aware of yourself and your own identity, independent of anyone else. It is defining yourself as to who you are with your backbone straight. Let your self-worth be defined by what you do/think/speak, and not by any blood-relationship (who is your father/brother) nor any sexual relationship (who is your husband).
2) Expect others to be bad. ( Don't expect others to be nice. If they are, be grateful )
20th century women cry when others are bad/rude/cruel to them. ("Ro kyun raho ho? Kissi ne kuch keh diya kya?")
21st century woman know to answer back. She also remembers that no one has the right to be rude to her if the she has not done anything wrong. And if someone is unnecessarily rude, she sees through them. She can afford to lose friends to keep her dignity intact.
Learn to punch that anti-social (rapist/molester) and break his teeth. Teach that animal a lesson. Don't sit and cry that 'Oh! I got raped. Now no one will marry me. I am dishonoured!". Your honour is your integrity and rectitude; absolutely invulnerable to any criminal's perverse instincts. You have the right to keep your head held high under all circumstances.
If someone wrongs you, do not be the ever-forgiving Bharatiya Naari. Take revenge. Speak out loud. Refuse to suffer in silence. Take the wrong-doer to task. And no tears like Sita or Draupadi, please!
If your bridegroom asks for dowry, call the police (like Nisha Sharma). If your husband beats you, complain to the police; or even better, dump him.
3) Take responsibility for your happiness. ( Don't expect others to make you happy. If they do, be grateful )
Put your own happiness first. You need not be too nice to others. Do things which make you happy. You are the most important person to yourself. Also, expect others to take responsibility of their own happiness. Their well-being is not your headache. Stop giving so much attention to others. Do not wait for assurances and approvals. Be self-assured and self-reliant. Don't wait for things to be handed over to you on a golden platter. Go ahead and achieve them yourself. Love someone only if that someone loves you. Love a country only if that country loves you.
4) Solve your problems yourself. ( Don't expect others to solve your problems. If they do, be grateful )
Stop complaining. People have their own problems. So don't crib. Be solution-minded, and not the usual cynical soul. Be on the top of things. Run your life smoothly. Don't get exasperated by the day-to-day problems. Fix them immediately.
5) Think that you deserve to live a good life. ( Who said you need to perennially suffer? )
Hold yourself in awe. Have high expectations in life. Give yourself the best. Pamper yourself. Provide yourself with high standard food, clothes, shelter, facilities, education, health, books, hobbies, infotainment, environment, holidays. If you don't provide yourself, nobody else will. (Everyone is busy with their own lives : there are not many Mahatma-s these days!)
6) Stop putting up (tolerating) with anything sub-standard. ( An extension of the above )
Be quality-conscious. Stop accepting anything cheap. Refuse to put up with anything below your expectations : whether it is a shabby public toilet or an abusive partner. Maintain high standards. Show a good taste in every aspect of your life, 24/7/365. You will not settle for less by making quality compromises.
7) Think yourself important. ( Feel important to be considered important )
Are you a good and important citizen of the country? Are you a good human resource? Do you matter to others? Can you make others come to you? Do people take you seriously? Do people listen when you speak? Can you stand out in a crowd?
How many people consider your time and efforts as priorities? Do people approach you for help? Are you considered a problem-solver? Do people think twice before cancelling an appointment with you? How many people are chasing you for your professional expertise?
How many people look up to you for inspiration? How many people find you admirable? Would it matter if you were dead? How many people cannot afford to lose your friendship/association? How many people would avoid picking a fight with you?
8) Keep improving yourself. ( And don't bother if you are branded over-ambitious )
In India, women with high ambitions are considered "unmarriageable". But you don't bother. Go ahead and keep lengthening your curriculum vitae every 6 months.
Be punctual. Deliver when you promise. Meet deadlines. Be dependable. Be resourceful. Induce others to need you, your expertise, your time, your help.
9) Make friends with the right people. ( You do have a choice )
Be selective in making friends, because the human mind is very susceptible to the company they keep. You have the right to be your own person. Take opinions from the correct people. It is OK to lose some 'friends' at times.
10) Know your job more than well. ( Everyone has a degree, not everyone has the knowledge-consciousness )
Not only keep yourself updated about your profession, but also recognize the upcoming trends. Smash the 'glass ceiling'. Do your best and also inspire others to do their best.
Wishing you a wonderful and successful 21st century! (All along this blog, I am primarily speaking to myself :D )