When you’re a child, “they” always say life goes by fast and before you know it you’re 50 wondering where the time went. At some point your teenage years will feel as if they are dragging, but as soon as you hit 19, 20, then suddenly you’re 21, you realize that “they” weren’t lying. I was fortunate enough to become a full adult (21) this past May 17th and have since had a crazy, nostalgic feeling. Not only do I feel like a profound new woman, because I am a new woman but also a bit bitter as I further pull away from my childhood years. To embrace this new chapter of my story, I decided to reflect on the 20 years of lessons that got me to 21.
Lesson 1: Listen to the silence. Be comfortable in silence, learn how to work with silence.
Lesson 2: Choose your heart first. It can be daunting when always attempting to do the logical thing. Sometimes you must follow what your heart wants and see where it takes you.
Lesson 3: Pain exists. You will have many fragile moments as the world collides around you.
Lesson 4: Know when to say no, but learn how to say yes.
Lesson 5: What you put in your mind is what you put out. Those negative thoughts and criticism you carry will only take you so far.
Lesson 6: Stay active. Your nutrition and overall health is more important than you realize, treat your body like the temple it is and know your absolute limits.
Lesson 7: Laugh as much as you can, laugh at the small jokes only you understand, laugh at the corny jokes that would typically annoy you or that others can’t stand, stop taking everything so literal.
Lesson 8: Love will come to you, don’t look for it and don’t force it but know that every experience you have with love is necessary, it’s temporary, take it in.
Lesson 9: If you desire evolution, go get it. Don’t hesitate to be the change you think is necessary, just because it causes a little controversy.
Lesson 10: Push yourself to constantly create within and around yourself.
Lesson 11: Execute new ideas you have regardless of what others think; at the end of the day, you’re stuck with yourself.
Lesson 12: Find happiness, then look beyond it. Remember that ‘happy’ is not in the hands of another person.
Lesson 13: Fall in love with your fears and pursue them until they’re no longer what you’re afraid of.
Lesson 14: Rather than being quick to assume, question or judge be quick to find compassion in every situation, even if you’re the only one in the room to do so.
Lesson 15: Walk the extra mile for whatever speaks to your soul.
Lesson 16: Spend time with your family. Those late night shenanigans or Sunday brunches with friends can wait at times.
Lesson 17: Look good, feel better. Don’t make a habit of leaving the house in loungewear, even if you throw on the simplest of clothes and a little bit of mascara I promise there’ll be an impact on your day.
Lesson 18: Touch everything with passion. Find one thing in everything that’s interesting.
Lesson 19: Adventure. If you’re scared of heights, go zip lining. Every year push yourself to do one thing that’s unlikely.
Lesson 20: Find your peace. Give three hours to yourself every week. Meditate, read, watch motivational talks; anything that will feed what you need.
I’m excited for the lessons to come as I continue to journey through life. None of us are promised tomorrow, it’s up to us to ensure that we’re living our best lives everyday.
What’s a life lesson you hold close to you?