Today is my 22nd birthday! I thought it would be fun to share 21 things I’ve learned in the first 21 years of life.
1. Mom and Dad are usually right.
It doesn’t matter what it is, but they are probably right about it.
2. Never underestimate a phone call.
With texting being so common and easy today it can be easy to forget to call someone up. I can always tell when I call my grandparents that they appreciate it much more than a text to them.
3. People will be in your life if they want to be.
The best relationships are ones that aren’t forced. If someone wants to leave your life let them! You’ll have healthier relationship because of it.
4. Just because you don’t talk all the time does not mean your friendship is over.
This is something I learned while being in college. Being 800+ miles away from my best friends from home meant I not only saw them less but I didn’t always talk to them. Most of them I have been friends with since 1st grade! That friendship didn’t just end because I was on the East Coast. Whenever I go home, we pick up right where things left off.
5. Always be prepared.
Whether it’s keep an emergency granola bar in you bag or desk at work, having an extra tampon, or an external battery charger. Be prepared, you never know what life will throw at you.
6. It’s okay to ask for help.
Whether it’s help with school or work items, people want you to succeed. If someone is unwilling to help I would
7. Know your worth.
Now this can be taken a few ways. With other people if they are not treating you the way you think you deserve to be treated, get out of that friendship or relationship. It is not worth your time and energy. Don’t be afraid to speak up at work. If you get a job offer that is under market value, (politely!) ask to be fairly compensated. After working for a company for a few years, speak up about being paid more. If a company is not willing to fairly pay you chances are they are not the right fit.
8. Don’t take a job just to have one.
I was offered a job at another company before accepting my current position. Both offers had me working part time while I finished the semester. The first company had no guarantee of a full time position after graduation. They were just testing to see if it would work. My current company had a guaranteed position. Had I accepted the first offer, I don’t know if I would be employed right now.
9. Treat Yo Self
When you reach a new milestone like a promotion or new job then treat yourself! Go get a new purse/shoes/shirt/etc. or grab dinner with friends. There’s nothing wrong with celebrating you.
10. Have me time
When life gets incredibly busy or stressful it’s easy to forget to take care of yourself. Spend 10, 20, 30 minutes or however long you choose to spend some time alone. Take a bubble bath with candles and a glass of wine, put your phone in another room and read a book, get your nails done, go for a walk. Whatever you want to do to spend some time alone to reset and recharge is important.
11. Drink water
I used to not like water but once I started consistently drinking it, I realized that I was probably dehydrated before. Figure out what works best to get you to drink it whether it be fruit infused water or a certain type of water bottle (I drink more water when a straw is involved for some reason). Always have your bottle on you as well so you can just take sips periodically.
12. Don’t deprive yourself
Whenever I would try to get back on track with healthy eating, I would not let myself eat certain foods like sweets or chips, whatever it was. This led to cravings and binges which was doing the opposite of what I wanted. Now if I want a cookie, I eat a cookie. Chips and salsa? Bring it on! I enjoy them more since I don’t have them as much and I don’t see it as cheating or that I’m no longer eating healthy.
13. Have a consistent routine
I was always the person that loved being on break from school because I could do whatever I wanted whenever I wanted. That was great for a few days until I got bored and restless. I thrive on routines. I enjoy having a semi set day to day schedule. Don’t get me wrong, changing up your routine every once in a while is important but being consistent with workouts, going to bed and waking up makes scheduling things much easier.
14. Say no.
As important as it is to say yes it’s equally important to say no. If your friends are all going to a movie and you really don’t want to see it then it’s okay to say no! Say no if you have a lot of things on your plate at work and your boss wants you to do another task. It’s better to say no and give quality work that is on time than sloppy work that is late.
15. Continuously learn new things
Even though I just finished college, learning is something that is important to me. I always want to learn something, whether a new word or a hobby. Whenever I come across a word that I don’t know while reading I look it up. I learned to knit when I was younger (I don’t remember how or who taught me) except I spent years not doing it. Over winter break I picked it up again and ended up making a scarf as a Valentine’s Day present. Learning new things helps me stay sane.
16. Work hard, play hard
It is so important to work hard, especially when you have a goal you want to achieve. But don’t get so caught up in chasing that goal that you forget to have fun. I used to think it was so important to get all of my work done as soon as possible but I realized that focusing on this too much had me missing out on fun outings with friends. Your goal will still be there in the morning (unless it has a midnight deadline!) so go out with you friends and have a few drinks. You will never remember the nights you spent inside doing work but you will remember when you saw someone overindulge and make a fool of themselves.
17. Try new things
It could be a new workout, new food, new type of music. Whatever it is, don’t be afraid to branch out. But at the same time know your limits. For example, I have a very picky eater. One thing I have tried multiple times and do not like is seafood. I will not eat it because I just don’t like it no matter how good some one tries to tell me it is. I’ve been at a meal before where people try and pressure me to try it but I stand my ground and just say no until they get bored and change the subject. Now if it was a new kind of dessert they wanted me to try it would be a different story 😉
18. Talking is best
When you are in an argument with someone its so easy to just be silent and not talk. This never helps the situation! It just lets you and the other person stew and get more upset with each other. It’s so much better to agree to meet or talk on the phone if you’re too far away to meet. Texting lets someone else put the tone to your words which doesn’t help in an argument.
19. Eat the cake
Or cookie, brownie, chocolate, whatever it is your craving! Life is short so why not indulge a little every once in a while! If you ran 5 miles and want a piece of candy after dinner have it. Everything in moderation!
20. You are your biggest critic
Whenever I try a new recipe, I get anxious when I let other people try it. I’m not sure why because no one has ever told me they hate it (to my face 🙂 I’ll sit there an think about ways to make it better the next time. And while that is 110% okay to do, I shouldn’t let that stop me from sharing new recipes with people! Before anyone tells me what they think I just assume it’s awful when that’s not the case at all! This goes for anything in life, how fast you run, how quick you read, etc. You are the only person who is dwelling on it, so stop critiquing yourself and live your live!
21. Be yourself
Never conform to how people want you to be. Social media can make you think everyone else is living this perfect life and that you have to be like them but you don’t. It’s like your parents would say when you were younger “If everyone else was jumping off a bridge would you jump too?”. The answer is no! You’d be doing cartwheels on said bridge instead. Always be yourself, it’ll make people like you more since you’re being genuine.