I find when I write articles on things I’ve learned from over the years, it’s not literal in the sense that I’ve learned it exactly in those years, because I feel like learning is an ongoing journey. I still remember when I was 15, it was my favourite age. I’m not sure why, but at the time I decided it was. But, as I tell many people, I still feel that no matter if I’m in my 20’s or in my 80’s, I’ll still have my inner child within me. I think of how I’m still easily amused by the small things, it’s always the small things that make me smile and I love cute things, patting animals and I find the things that made me happiest when I was a child, are what I still enjoy doing now.
1) Don’t throw your socks away straight away. This is really important, because who knows how many socks we wear in a life time that could probably fill a boat. If there are more holes than fabric, then it makes sense to throw it away. However, if your stockings, tights or socks have a small hole, you can use your sewing kit to sew it tightly to get a few more wears out of it. This has been extremely helpful especially with my favourite cat socks.
2) Start using eye creams when you turn 20. It’s never too early to start using eye cream in your 20’s. Another everyday must is sunscreen. I don’t leave the house unless I’ve put on sunscreen no matter what season or weather. Taking care of your skin is so important. I’ve learned to try and experiment with different products, until I find ones that work well with my skin type .
3) How comfortable I am in my own skin. If you knew me growing up, you’d know that I’ve never been someone who feels the desire to be with someone, or the desire to fit in. I’ve always been quite independent and spend a lot of time alone, and now that I’m 22, I really embrace who I am.
4) The art of not giving a fudge. As you grow older, you notice how many people in the world feel the need to tell you how you should be. You have the choice of whether to accept it or not. There are certain advice that are good and beneficial, and other’s that are disguised as judgment.
5) The joy in cooking for yourself. Cooking is therapeutic. It’s good to cook often, because eating out can really add up, and it’s also much more healthier to cook for yourself. You can experiment with different recipes. Something I really enjoy is going to the supermarket, which might seem strange, but there’s something really calming, satisfying and enjoyable about it.
6) Everyone’s just taking it one day at a time. No matter how much someone looks like they’ve got it together, everyone’s just living one day at a time. That’s why it’s important not to compare your life with someone else’s. There is so much more beneath the surface that we don’t see. It’s a blessing to be alive, and something I remind myself when I feel anxiety, is to remind myself how beautiful it is that I get to experience this life.
7) Not wasting anytime with negative people. There are circumstances where we need to deal with negative people, such as in your job environment. When it comes to friendships, you have the choice of who you surround yourself with. I really believe that who you surround yourself with can influence both of you to some extent. When you surround yourself with motivated, caring and positive people, it can only be a positive influence.
8) Surrounding yourself with true friends. Similar to the previous point. There are so many amazing people that I’ve had great conversations with throughout the years, but not everyone is going to be our best friend. Surround yourself with people who you feel a connection with, who you know you can trust, who you feel yourself with and there’s similar feelings on both sides.
9) Knowing how to say ‘no’. Saying no shows that you respect yourself. It means that you know that if you simply don’t have the time, your hearts not really in it or it’s not meant to be, you can say no in an honest and genuine manner. It means that you’re prioritising your to-do list, before committing to other’s. It also allows you to draw boundaries.
10) The importance of spending less and saving more. I feel like the thing I spend the most on is food. Not only because we need it to live, but because I don’t buy materials the way I did when I was a teenager. When I was a teenager, I bought far too many clothes, and went through a shopaholic stage. I rarely buy clothes now, and usually find going to the movies or a date with a friend as my treat.
11) Social media is truly a highlight reel. I could write an article dedicated to this, but Social Media really is just the icing on the cake. There is so much depth in a persons life. There are the tears, the smiles and the upset times. Again, this is why it’s important for us not to compare, because what we post online, is what we are willing to share. It also, in a way, reflects how much we don’t share.
12) That it’s okay that not everyone will understand you. I spent a long time feeling misunderstood in my teens. It’s something I feel stable in now, because I am completely comfortable in who I am and my personality. I understand that not everyone will relate to me, and it’s normal that we won’t be close friends with everyone.
13) You are so beautiful. For many woman, we are told that it’s vain to tell ourselves that we’re beautiful. But, you should tell yourself that every single day! You’re so beautiful, because of your heart, your kindness, your loving nature, your intelligence, your wisdom, your smile. There are so many qualities in a person that makes them radiant.
14) Discover new things and search for experiences. Be adventurous and look out for new experiences. Try a new place out, go to an event and always strive to learn. It’s good to find as much experience as possible in terms of interning. I’ve found so much value from it, being able to learn and interact with all kinds of people. It also allows you to know what sort of areas you can see yourself working in.
15) You don’t need to be married by 25. (haha) when I was 18 I was convinced that I will be married by 25, have children and have my own home. Although, you never know that could happen, however it’s okay if things don’t go to plan. Change is constant, and sometimes life’s unpredicatable.
16) Pray your anxieties away. When I think back to my teens, my anxiety was at its lowest when I moved to Australia. At the time, I wasn’t praying to God as much as I should of, or surrounding myself with positive people. I really closed my heart and didn’t allow myself to experience as much as I could. When we pray, we leave our worries to God. We let go of the things we can’t change, rather than holding onto them.
17) Being a good listener. Sharing a conversation means not only talking to one another, but really listening and absorbing what someone is saying. More often, we tend to listen to talk. However, it’s good to really listen to understand. It shows respect, value, empathy and understanding. It also allows you to truly consider someone else, rather than think of yourself.
18) Home is where the heart is. No matter where you are in the world, the places that feel the most like home are the ones where our loved ones are. There the places that give us a certain feeling, or where we feel a certain connection towards. Feeling at home isn’t necessarily just the roof we live under, but the feeling we have with people.
19) Don’t settle. This goes for a lot of areas of life. Don’t settle for something because you feel you don’t have any other choice. Whether that’s in love, relationships, career, or other decisions. Follow your heart. Your gut instinct will tell you what feels right. Don’t give up on what you’re passionate about.
20) Your career doesn’t define you. How much you earn, what your job position is, how many friends you have, where you live. I find in the adult world, many many people define themselves from their job. Their self worth is placed in their job. However, I really believe your job doesn’t define who you are as a person.
21) Bad experiences are valuable. As valuable as good experience is, bad experience is just as valuable. We can learn so much from mistakes, conflicts and situations that we might not expect to be in. It can make one grow stronger, wiser and more experienced. When we make mistakes, we should always, always learn from them.
22) Happiness is a journey, not a destination. This is a great daily reminder. No one can be smiling and happy all the time, otherwise we wouldn’t feel the beauty of happiness. It’s okay to feel sad, to cry or to have off days. Being happy and choosing your attitude to how you react is a choice and state of mind, and learning to be content and positive is a choice no matter what your situation.