Happy Wednesday, loves! I hope you all had a fantastic Christmas with your families and friends!
My birthday is in two days. I will be 26! Sometimes I feel so much older than I am. I hope it doesn’t stay that way (haha). In all seriousness though, I’ve lived through a lot and feel that it’s made me kind of an “old-soul”. I like it. With my birthday and the New Year coming up, I thought what better time to reflect and think about the lessons I have learned so far. Of course, I am a very flawed human, as we all are, however I think these are things that I’ve really realized at the age of 26. I would love to hear some of the things you’ve learned about life, too. It’s a process. We live, and we learn. Here we go:
1. YOU CAN DO ANYTHING YOU PUT YOUR MIND TO:
This one is especially important to me. I strongly believe in the law of attraction and manifesting your desires. If you deeply believe in something, you have the power to make it a reality. No ifs, ands or buts. Whenever I put my mind to something, I already KNOW it will happen (it does 99% of the time). I feel like every single success in my life is due to that belief and my faith in the Universe. To read more on my story with the law of attraction, feel free to read on.
2. IT’S OKAY IF PEOPLE DON’T LIKE YOU:
Look, no matter which way you slice it, you will NEVER please everyone. I spent a large portion of my life trying to make everyone like me, and it was such a waste of time. You won’t be everyone’s cup of tea and there is something so freeing about learning to accept that. Spend your energy on people who LOVE AND CHERISH YOU for who you are. Forget the rest.
3. APPRECIATE THE PEOPLE YOU HAVE IN YOUR LIFE
(AND LEAVE THE ONES WHO DON’T DESERVE YOU):
Similar to my last point, but different too. I have so many amazing people in my life, it’s actually scary. It’s important to be grateful for them. My entire family is out of this world and supports me even when I don’t deserve it. My best friends are my life lines. My cousins are as close to me as if they were my own sisters. These relationships mean EVERYTHING to me. For a long time, I didn’t cherish these relationships the way I should have. At age 26, I can tell you FOR SURE that these people are everything to me and I would do anything to continue nurturing my relationships with them. The people who don’t care, need to be left behind.. like NOW. They don’t deserve you. For more on this topic, click here.
4. YOU DON’T NEED TO MEET SOCIETAL EXPECTATIONS OF YOU:
The world is changing, and thank god for that. It used to be common to be married by 25, have kids before 30, and be in a career where you could buy a home in your twenties. The world is not that way anymore, and it’s time you start realizing that, too. You do not need to fit into a mold. You don’t need to conform or do things that you feel you “should” do. When the time is right, these things will happen. Trust the process.
5. QUALITY OVER QUANTITY:
Quality is key. Friendships, experiences, and everything in between. This could even apply to physical belongings! What matters is the quality of the things/ people in your life, not the number of them. As a teen, I wanted to have MORE friends. For a while with my blog, I wanted MORE followers. I’ve realized now that it’s NOT about the numbers. It’s about how kind, loving and wonderful these individual things/ people are.
6. MONEY COMES AND GOES:
Don’t take this the wrong way. I’m not encouraging you to have zero respect for money or to spend like you’re a Kardashian. However, I do think that money is too IMPORTANT in our society. For me personally, I’m happy if I make enough money to live a comfortable life. Money will never bring you happiness. It can bring you the MEANS to be happy (eg. money to travel, have more time, start a business), but not true happiness itself. Also, there have been times in my life where I’m financially abundant, and times I’m completely broke. It comes and goes. Learn to accept that.
7. YOU NEED TO BE YOUR OWN BIGGEST ADVOCATE (ESPECIALLY WITH HEALTH CARE):
I want to hone in on health care for this point. I’ve had medical issues over the last year that I’ve needed a Doctor’s assistance with. I saw my Family Doctor, as well as another, and neither gave me sound recommendations. I’m not saying Doctors are maliciously trying to hurt us, but I think it’s important to fight for your own health care and to do your research to ensure that you’re receiving the best care. Being a tad more “forceful” with my Doctors has helped me immensely in receiving the care I needed in regards to my health.
8. WHEN OTHERS TREAT YOU DISRESPECTFULLY, IT’S A DIRECT REFLECTION OF THEM (NOT YOU):
I’ve learned to stop taking it so personally when other people are rude to me. It doesn’t reflect on me (or you), it’s more likely a reflection of how they are truly feeling about themselves and their own lives. Sad, but true.
9. KINDNESS BREEDS: WHAT YOU GIVE OUT, COMES BACK TENFOLD:
When you’re kind to others, you will see the results almost immediately. Not only will YOU feel great, but you’ll notice others are generally kind right back to you. Knock on wood, but I normally (now) find myself in situations with people who are so kind and loving. I feel like a big part of this has to do with the energy I choose to give out into this world.
10. FOLLOWING YOUR HEART (AKA YOUR INTUITION) IS ALWAYS THE ANSWER:
I know using your heart and intuition interchangeably is pretty controversial, but in my opinion, it’s true. You know that gut feeling you sometimes get? LEARN TO LISTEN TO IT. That’s your heart, your intuition, and the Universe all in one, trying to lead you in the right direction. Deep down, you know the answer to the question, before you even ask it.
11. YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE PERFECT:
We’re humans. We are all flawed and learning as we go. Learn to accept this. The minute I took a step back and realized that IT’S OKAY to have flaws, that’s when my life got better. Of course, I’m big on self-improvement, but you can’t get there until you learn to love yourself exactly as you are right now.
12. ALTHOUGH CHANGE IS SCARY, IT’S GOOD:
Change is such a scary thing. As scary and as hard as it is though, it’s completely necessary in order to live a happier life. Do the things that push you outside of your comfort zone. You will never know unless you try. For me, the biggest changes I made this year were quitting a job that made me unhappy and getting off an anti-depressant I’d been on for six years (currently in the process). Were either of these changes easy? ABSOLUTELY NOT. However, they both created space for more positive things to enter my life.
*Related Post: Dealing With Change
13. DON’T JUDGE OTHERS:
I try my BEST to never judge a book by its cover. You have NO IDEA what someone is going through behind closed doors, so it’s important to always be kind and to get to truly know a person before you make an assumption about them.
14. TAKE ALL COMMENTS WITH A GRAIN OF SALT:
You can’t believe everything you hear. I’ve learned to go directly to the source. Gossip is so often just that. Gossip. When you hear something, please don’t just believe it right away. There is always two sides to a story.
15. CLUTTER IS EVIL:
Another point I’m so huge on. I have always been a sick organization freak, but the minute I truly started DECLUTTERING my world, my life did change. Leave room in your brain for the important things, not for silly things. I have a clean Inbox, closet, drawers and life, and I make a point to keep it this way at ALL TIMES. For more on this topic, read The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. Seriously, it changed the game for me.
16. YOU HAVE TO BE YOUR OWN BIGGEST CHEERLEADER:
Although I’m not saying it’s not important to have a good support team, YOU are the one who can change your life. No one else. You need to believe in yourself and give YOURSELF the motivation you need. An example… I recently had a colleague bash my blog and tell me that he thinks it’s unrealistic of me to expect it to become career. I chose to be my own biggest cheerleader, and used the comment as motivation to work even harder & to prove his negative comment as false!
17. JOBS CAN ALWAYS BE REPLACED:
It’s a waste of time to stay in a career that is not fulfilling your passions. Simply put. Don’t waste another minute being unhappy. Find something that you’re passionate about and give it YOUR ALL. If you died tomorrow, your job would replace you within a week.
*Related Post: Why I Quit My Full-Time Job
18. DON’T SETTLE:
Relationships, careers, friendships. Never settle for less than you deserve just so you can say you have it. Keep fighting. You will meet someone who will never treat you like a second option. You will find that job that fills you up with passion. Be patient.
19. LEARNING TO LOVE YOURSELF IS KEY:
It’s true when they say you can’t love someone else until you love yourself first. I’m big on growth and self-improvement, but I think it’s important to acknowledge where you are NOW and to love yourself exactly as you are.
*Related Post: My Journey with Self-Love
20. YOUR PAST DOESN’T DEFINE YOU:
We all have a past (especially me). It’s damaging to hold on to the past as this can create limiting beliefs. Your future will be whatever you want it to be. Work to move forward and stop looking back. The only moment you can control is RIGHT NOW.
21. PEOPLE RESPOND TO AUTHENTICITY:
I’ve had a hard time getting comfortable in my own skin, but now that I have, I refuse to ever look back. Others relate to realness, simply put. Don’t be fake and don’t try to put on a show. You’ll get further by being true to who you really are.
22. HATE AND JEALOUSY ONLY HURT YOU:
Many of us hang on for dear life to past feelings of hate or jealously, whether consciously or not. Doing so is only going to create problems in your own mind and life. Learn to let go of feelings of resentment and learn to forgive. You’ll feel so much better.
23. LISTEN MORE, SPEAK LESS:
I still have to work on this one (let’s be honest), but it’s so true. By speaking, you are only saying what you already know. When you take the time to truly listen to others, you are building relationships that are meaningful and you are also LEARNING. You can learn something from every single person you interact with.
24. YOGA AND MEDITATION REALLY ARE SAVIORS:
I fell in love with yoga and meditation four years ago. Both practices have helped me through every single rough patch in my life and help me to feel more grounded. If you are unfamiliar, check out Yoga with Adriene, as it’s a great starting point. She has free, at-home yoga practices for all levels.
25. YOU DON’T NEED TO COMPETE:
There is enough to go around. For a long time I felt like I had to one-up every single person I met and this is such a false belief. There is room for all of us to be amazing, kind, smart, and beautiful people. The minute you stop competing with others, you are going to see what I mean.
I hope these life-lessons were an inspiration for you and that you could relate! Let me know down below what some life-lessons you have learned are!
Thank you for taking the time out of your day to read this. As always, I love you guys so much and I will talk to you soon!
*come follow me on instagram at @25thoughts_ for daily updates & inspiration!