It’s my birthdaaaaaaaaaay! I’m not just saying it as a chance to say you can send me cards, cake and presents but because birthdays mean you’ve survived another year and probably learnt some life lessons. Although, you can if you want to…
I’m officially in my mid-twenties now which sounds absolutely mental. In some ways, I still feel the exact same as I did when I was 18. But in reality, that was a whole six years.
In those six years, so many things have changed in my life and so have I. As I wrote in my 2019 in Reflection post, this year of my life was a big one for life changes and personal growth. But with that in mind, what exactly have I learnt in my 23rd year of life?
1. You’ll never control other people – For my entire life, my dad has always told me (sometimes annoyingly) ‘you can only control your actions and reactions.’ This year, I think I finally learnt that.
2. Always put yourself first – If you can only control your actions, then make yourself the priority. It is your life, so live it for you.
3. You can’t eat Mexican food (without an Imodium anyway) – As heartbreaking as it is, my IBS hates my favourite food and I will always end up running to the toilet.
4. FOMO is over, embrace JOMO – JOMO (joy of missing out) speaks to my soul because I am a total grandma. I need to stop feeling guilty or sad about choosing a night in because I find joy in cosy evenings.
5. Not everything is meant to last forever – Somethings will go the distance, but not everything does. That doesn’t mean I shouldn’t embrace it, experience it and enjoy it.
6. Be more grateful – I’ve been known to be a miserable bastard who moans about anything. I can just see my best friends nodding along in agreement whilst reading this. But this was the year I changed my mindset to embrace positivity, gratitude and the good things because there are a lot.
7. How to save money – It’s taken a while, and the help of a personal financial expert (i.e. my stepmum lol) but I finally started saving money and had money in my bank, until I blew it on a month travelling round Asia.
8. Do things because you love them – Sometimes, it’s important to do things because I love them. They don’t have to be productive or help me achieve some goal, I can do them just because they are fun or make me feel good.
9. Listen to your gut and take risks – The logical decision or option isn’t always the one that will bring me the most happiness, so it’s important to listen to my gut and do what’s right for me.
10. Use social media better – I’ve tried to stop spending so much time endlessly scrolling on social media to use it in a more productive way.
11. Self-love should be a priority – My self-love journey is something I’m always working towards and will always make priority because it’s the key to living a happier life.
[Related Post: Four Things to Help Your Body Confidence Journey]
12. How to drive – After years of being terrified, I finally learnt to drive in one of the scariest countries (hello seven-lane highways and crazy drivers in big cars).
13. My friends are always there – My pals are a bunch of good eggs. No matter how far away I’ve been or how long we’ve gone without talking, they are always there for me.
14. You are stronger than you know – This year, I came off antidepressants after four years. I didn’t know how I’d cope without them and I thought I’d spiral, but I’m doing good.
15. Music will fix everything – I swear, there is nothing better for soothing my soul or giving me an energy boost than listening to music. Whether it is going to a gig, blasting music in the car or having a karaoke/shower party.
16. Not everyone gets Delhi-belly – Somehow, despite my worst fears and IBS, I had a stomach of steel in India. I didn’t even pop one Imodium!
17. Dream big and bold – There is nothing wrong with being a dreamer, it’s good for you. This year, I fully embrace the art of dreaming and setting big goals (but don’t forget: it does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live as Dumbledore says).
18. My sister is a gem – After years of bickering, wrestling and stolen clothes, our relationship seems to have grown up. She’s been an angel in the past year, making moving home easier and more exciting.
19. Don’t stay at a job you hate – Life is too short to stay at job that makes you unhappy. There will always be something new, better and exciting out there.
[Related Post: Five Ways to Survive a Crappy Job]
20. Explore more of the world – When I went on my travels for a month, I realised how much I loved exploring new places and want to continue trying see as much of the world as possible.
21. Eat more pizza and watch more cheesy films – Most shitty days can be fixed by spending an evening with a pizza and Dirty Dancing.
22. Kindness matters – In a world that’s a bit shitty, I truly believe in the power of kindness. Whatever we can do to make the world a bit brighter and better, then I think we should.
[Related Post: Four Ways to Spread Some Kindness]
23. Know when to say yes, but also say no – I’ve learnt to take risks, have adventures, experience everything I can. But also I know when to say no to things that don’t serve me, fulfil me or make me happy.
There we have it, 23 things I learnt whilst being 23. Looking back on that list, it seems like 23 was an important year in my life. It was a year where I truly got to know myself. I learnt about myself, what I want in life and what’s a priority for me.
I am even more excited for the next year of my life. Who knows what it has in store for me. I’m sure there will be more life lessons to understand, adventures to experience and skills to be learnt. I can’t wait to see what 24 is going to be like.
But for now, I’m going to eat some cake and celebrate the rest of my birthday!
What have you learnt in the past year?