February 25th 2017
I have been writing these “___ Things I’ve Learned in ___ Years” lists on my birthday for a few years now, but have never published one until today. So, for what it’s worth, here are 22 things I’ve learned over the course of my 22 years of life:
- Everyone has different goals. Don’t compare your expectations of your journey to anyone else’s. Be happy with what you consider to be success on your own terms.
- It is better to stand up for yourself and lose someone than to be passive and remain with people who don’t understand mutual respect.
- You don’t want to be the best at everything because then you have no push to get better. Being competitive within reason is healthy and drives you to succeed.
- At 22, you don’t need to “have your life together” yet. This is the time that you’re supposed to be all over the place and try everything. No matter how many people appear to have their life together, most of us don’t.
- It is completely okay so say “no”. You don’t have to make yourself to feel obligated to go out every time plans are offered. Staying home does not make you lazy if it is what you feel you need.
- Taking time for self care benefits every area of your life. Taking time off to treat yourself and your body right will not only improve your health, but your attitude towards the life you live.
- Break your routine. Although it is good to have a set schedule and commit to certain practices, breaking routine in as simple a way as going to a different coffee shop can really enrich your life.
- Read. I know I’ve mentioned this in other posts, but seriously, read. Sometimes the wisdom you find in the pages of a good book is so much richer than anything the world can teach you on its own.
- Educate yourself. There is no worse partner to passion than ignorance. Speak from a place of knowledge or a place of inquiry, not a place of blind arrogance.
- Share your creativity with the world. It may be incredibly scary to put yourself in such a vulnerable place as to put your work out in the open for others to view and criticize. But it is better to share an imperfect something than a hidden nothing.
- Someone else’s success isn’t your failure. We all want our own things and sometimes it takes longer or requires more work to get what we want than it does for other people. Don’t be discouraged that you haven’t made it yet.
- It is okay to be inspired by someone as long as you don’t lose yourself in the process. Taking inspiration from people you admire is totally healthy but be sure to remember to preserve the things that make you, you.
- Silence isn’t always a bad thing. You don’t need to talk to someone 24/7 in order to feel close to them. The ability to be comfortably silent is intimate too.
- Use social media to motivate you, not create you. Social media should be used to inspire you to live your best life, not make you feel as though you need to create a persona to stay interesting. Your life is more than just pictures on a screen.
- Sometimes things don’t go according to plan and that is perfectly okay.
- Change is scary but good. We don’t grow without change.
- Spend time outside in nature. We have already done so much to build our world, take time to appreciate the things we’ve left untouched.
- You don’t have to go far to travel somewhere amazing. Some of the most exciting adventures are hiding right in our own backyard.
- You are never too old to start pursuing your dreams. It’s never too late to start something new as long as you intend to commit to it.
- Family comes first, don’t forget that. Whether your family is biological or chosen, remember to be there when they need you.
- If someone gets upset with you for doing what is right for you, don’t make yourself feel bad about it. Stand by your choices.
- Take every chance you have to share your thoughts with other people and listen to their thoughts too. We all live equally complex and important lives and learn so many inspiring lessons that we can share.
So here’s to another trip around the sun~