As of earlier this month, I have been alive for twenty years. In the last twenty years I have done many, many things and learnt a lot of life lessons. In honour of twenty years of life I thought I’d list twenty different important lessons that I’ve learnt.
- Education is important, once you have a qualification, no-one can take that away from you. If you want to invest in something, invest in learning something that you’re passionate about.
- Nobody actually knows what they want to do with their lives, all of those career advisors are running a scam. You spend your life working this one out.
- Love yourself. If you can’t do that, then just accept yourself. It’s not something that happens overnight, but it can happen.
- Don’t be afraid to ask for help.
- Know when you’ve been a dick, and apologise. That way you also get a good sense of when you’re right and the other person is being a dick.
- Accept that people in your life will come and go. Someone who means the world to you know might not be in your life in five years time. That’s hard to accept but it’s okay, love them now and let them go when it’s time.
- Put yourself in the other person’s shoes. It’s so simple, but it can cut out so much nastiness. Get used to doing this, do it frequently with shop assistants, teachers, friends, and you’ll become a more empathetic and tolerant person.
- If you don’t know the answer to something, look it up. We have Google and other search platforms at our fingertips, you can learn anything you want to. Just look it up! Learning is never a hinderance.
- If s/he doesn’t call back, it’s not going to happen. It’ll take you about twenty years to learn the signs of when someone doesn’t like you as much as you like them; it’ll take another twenty to accept it.
- Violence doesn’t solve anything. Stirring up hatred also doesn’t solve anything. All it does is make sure that people won’t want to be near you.
- No-one’s going to notice the pimple on your forehead. Or your wonky eyeliner. I’m not bull-shitting here, I studied this kind of shit when I did psychology. People won’t notice the tiny imperfections that you stress out over.
- Don’t be scared of your emotions. Accept them, embrace them, and work with them.
- If you are a woman: don’t read women’s magazines. They are full of shit and judge women’s lives on two numbers; how much they weigh, and how many men they’ve slept with. That’s total bull-crap.
- Romance isn’t how it’s shown in the movies/on TV. It takes effort every day, things aren’t just magically perfect forever when you find a wonderful partner. (Yes, it’s amazing and 100,000x more fun, but it’s not rainbows and sunshine and perfect hair.)
- Don’t be afraid to change your opinions. You might have always been a staunch Pacifist, but now you’ve had some experiences that have changed your views. That’s okay!
- Don’t waste your time on people who make you feel like crap. It’s hard when they’re family, or you’ve been in a relationship with them for years… but if they’re making you unhappy then it might be a good idea to put some distance between you.
- You’re stronger than you think. Even if your world is turned upside down, you’ll find a way through. It might take a long time, but you will make it.
- Look after your body AND mind. Try to take good care of yourself in every little way that you can. Eat well, drink water and get lots of sleep. Exercise some days, relax on other days. Be kind to yourself.
- Learn when to say ‘no’ and when to say ‘yes’. Know what your limits are, know what limits are sensible to push and what are there for a reason.
- Find a (positive) way to express your thoughts and feelings. Write, draw, act, dance, sing, walk, run, take pictures… value your unique view on the world.
’til next time,