Today I am celebrating my twentieth birthday! Yes, I am a Christmas Eve baby, and no it does not suck (completely). I’ve learned a lot in the past two decades and although it was hard to narrow down the list, here are the 20 most important things I’ve learned in the past 20 years!
1. Family is important
As you get older, you will spend less and less time with your family, but that’s when you realize just how important they are! Your family will be there to support you through anything, even if they’re miles away. Value the time you get to spend with them because you won’t have that forever! And… as much as we hate to admit it, our parents are right about 99.9% of the time.
2. It’s the little things
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: The little things in life are what matter the most! It’s all the small things like tidying the kitchen before your mom gets home from work, or surprising your friend with a chocolate bar that make the world go round. The little things make me smile, I always remember the little things.
3. Always be grateful and be kind
Be grateful for every opportunity you have been given, and be kind to everyone around you. A kind gesture can go a long way!
4. Learn to cook & eat well
My dad told me very early on that cooking was an important skill and that I should never marry a man who can’t cook. It is so important to eat good, healthy, nutritious food! That being said, you should never say no to dessert!!
5. Money is not the most valuable thing in life
Although it may seem sometimes that money is the most important thing in life, it’s not. The most valuable things in life are people, places, and experiences.
6. Nothing lasts forever
Nothing lasts forever. The pain of your first breakup won’t last forever, but neither will the feeling of getting a great mark on a test. Nothing stays the same, things will change, and life will go on!
If you are lucky enough to be given the opportunity to travel and see the world… DO IT! The world is so beautiful and every little place is so unique. When you’re travelling, try to experience the culture and never say no to a new experience.
8. It’s okay to cry
Tough things happen, times get hard and its okay to cry about it! It’s okay to cry for days on end if that’s what you need to do! According to science, crying is actually good for you! Tears release toxins that accumulate as a result of stress, and eliminating these toxins helps lighten your mood. Sometimes when you cry you even release endorphins, which are “the happy hormone”.
9. Take time for yourself
Always take time for yourself, and it’s completely okay to say no! You can say no to spending time with friends, family or a boyfriend if time alone will benefit you more. Time alone helps you to rejuvenate and is really never a bad idea!
10. Not everyone is going to like you and that’s okay
Some people just will not like you… it’s inevitable. Instead of wasting your time being upset or trying to figure out what you did wrong, just be the bigger persona and move on. Who cares what people think anyway? Just keep doin’ you! You should never change for anyone!
11. Work hard for what you want and don’t give up
Work hard everyday and never give up on your dreams! Hard work pays off, whether it’s getting a really great mark on a test or passing your road test. Work hard enough and you can do anything!
12. Try to learn one new thing a day
My dad once told me he tries to learn something new every day, and although this is easy when you’re in school and being forced to learn new things everyday, don’t stop once you graduate!
13. Be confident
Be confident in yourself and in your abilities. If you have something to say, speak up! Confidence is key!
14. Love passionately
Don’t be afraid to show people you love them and tell those around you just how much they mean to you every chance you get.
15. It’s okay to fail, you learn from your mistakes
You will try new things, you will not always succeed and that is okay!! You will learn from your mistakes and do great things.
16. Do more of what makes YOU happy
Don’t spend your life trying to please others, do what makes you happy!
Moisturize. Every. Day. It feels great, and your skin will love you for it!
18. Laugh once a day
Even if you’re laughing at a stupid joke or a silly video, laugh once a day- it’s good for you! Especially if you’re upset, laughing will make you feel better (even just for a minute).
19. Take pictures
There’s a story behind each picture and it’s so fun to look back on old photos. It’s crazy to look at pictures even from just a few years ago and see just how much my life has changed.
20. Drinking is overrated
I’m only 20, and have only been (legally) allowed to drink for one year, but I can honestly say its overrated. I would so much rather stay at home, curl up in bed with some chocolate, and watch a movie!