Live and Learn 

This week hosts a couple of milestones, the first being that it’ll be the 1 year anniversary of this blog! Wow, that went by fast. I remember agonizing over starting it and the anxiety that came with writing those first couple posts. Now, I can’t wait to sit and write, it’s a huge stress reliever! Funny how that works. Then, on top of that I will be turning the ripe old age of 26 on Thursday, which directly correlates with the topic I chose to write about…

I wanted to sit down and reflect on life (because isn’t that what you do when you have a birthday coming up?) and look at all the things I have come to know and learn in my 26 years of age. Now it probably isn’t a very vast or exciting list, but I can’t deny that I have had some pretty, let’s say, “interesting” experiences that have helped shape who I am today. So with that I’ll jump right in (I told myself I wouldn’t write a novel for you guys, let’s see if I can stick to that…)

26 Lessons I’ve Learned in 26 Years

  1. Turning 18 does not make you an adult in all aspects of life. Looking back, at 18 we were still such kids with soooo much to learn and go through. Stop thinking you need your life figured out as soon as you hit that age. Enjoy it!
  2. If something doesn’t feel right, don’t second guess it. I don’t know how many times I talked myself out of feeling “off” only to have it blow up in my face and my inner voice telling me “I told you so”. Trust your gut, it’s usually right.
  3. Be confident when saying no to a person or situation. It’s okay to have a backbone and be assertive, because if you don’t do it for yourself nobody else will.
  4. Stop making excuses. You are in total control of your life (to an extent) and if you keep making excuses you are allowing goals and dreams to slip out of your grasp. Plus, excuses usually lead to complaining, and nobody likes a complainer.
  5. Want something? Go get it. So many times I thought certain things were unattainable, but eventually I learned to sit down, write out what I wanted and the steps I was going to take to make it happen. It really does work!
  6. Focus on your own life and quit worrying about others. Nobody follows the same path in life, so just because you’re taking a different route doesn’t mean you’re less than anyone else. This was a huge thing for me!
  7. Stop associating with negative people. Misery loves company, and if you find yourself surrounded by this kind of energy on a daily basis, you’ll start acting the same way. Take a step back and find people with as much passion and joy as you have.
  8. Sometimes things don’t work out, and that’s okay. Life can throw curve balls and how you react to them will determine how you overcome them.
  9. If you can’t control it, don’t stress over it. This was something that was difficult for me to learn, but it was such a huge relief when I finally accepted it.
  10. Be open minded. A lot of times it’s easy to get stuck on one idea. If it doesn’t work out, it likely wasn’t meant for you. A lot of times when an opportunity passes us it’s because better things are on their way. Do the work and what’s meant for you will come.
  11. Don’t let people take advantage of you. This applies to all areas in life. The workplace, friendships, home life, relationships. If you’re continuously giving and not getting anything in return, it may be time to re-evaluate the situation.
  12. Your happiness and health comes first. It’s not being selfish if you put an emphasis on what makes you happy because if you’re enjoying life and feeling good, you will apply that to everything else. Stop putting others needs and wants first if yours are not being met.
  13. Do not chase people. I can’t emphasize this enough. If you have to convince someone to stay in your life, you’ve already lost. Plus, why would you want someone in your life who doesn’t want to be there? Let them walk and move on. Trust me on this one, there are people out there willing to make you a priority!
  14. Support your friends and family. Be there for them. You never know when you’re going to need a shoulder to cry on or that extra backup when making a tough decision. It’s easy to pick up the phone, so call, text, and keep in touch with those important people in your life.
  15. Be confident in yourself!! In your looks and in your life choices. There is no shame in the way you look or how you are choosing to live your life. Your opinion of yourself is the only one that matters.
  16. Don’t get caught up in a relationship that takes time away from your friendships. Enough said.
  17. Stemming from that, be wary of a relationship that stresses you out. If it doesn’t make you feel good and causes you anxiety, then you’re better off without it.
  18. Don’t let your ego get in your way. Sometimes you have to do things you said you’d never do and that’s all part of life.
  19. Start a savings account. This may seem simple, but it is such an important thing. You never know what could happen, so put a percentage of each month’s paycheque into your savings. Plus it’s great if you’re just starting out on your own or want to travel.
  20. Take time to find balance. Don’t run yourself into the ground. Learn that rest is just as important as the hustle. Exhausted people are not efficient people.
  21. Think before you speak. No brainer, but sometimes it’s easy to say things that we later regret, and that’s never a good feeling.
  22. Stop feeling guilty!! Guilt is by far the worst and easiest emotion to feel. It will not change anything, so its best to just let whatever it is you’re feeling guilty about go. Wish I had learned this sooner!
  23. Take care of yourself. Both mentally and physically. If you’re feeling down, seek help. You only get this one body, so make sure it’s one that will last. Yeah pizza is great, but so is feeling healthy, so make sure to balance that out when you can.
  24. Don’t be afraid of getting out of that comfort zone. By doing things that scare me, I’ve been able to meet some great new people and partake in opportunities that I would’ve missed before by being “safe”.
  25. You’ll be okay if someone tells you no. You are going to run into this a lot, so you might as well come to terms with hearing it. It doesn’t mean you should give up, it just means you need to approach things differently or look at it from a different perspective.
  26. Last, but not least, good things come to those who work. I’ve learned that you can’t sit around and wait for things to happen. You have to put in the time and effort and eventually it will all come together. Be patient and persevere. Being a hard worker always shows and you will open so many doors for yourself with just that one quality.

And there you have it. It’s a lot to read, so if you’ve made it this far, thank you! I hope you guys have a great week and if you have anything to add, feel free to comment below 🙂

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