22 things I learned after 22 years

I haven’t been around long, but life has taught me a few things.

  1. Your gut is usually right, but it’s important to weigh your options.

We initially have instinctual feelings towards a situation or decision, but sometimes it is worth weighing your options before coming to an impulsive conclusion.


  1. It’s okay to reject “good” opportunities for better ones or because you don’t actually want them.

I recently got a job offer for something I wasn’t really interested in at a place an hour from my house. I decided it would benefit my happiness more if I waited for something I was more interested in a little closer to home. Or something I love an hour away would be worth the drive.


  1. It’s important to set aside time for yourself and your friends.

We always hear we need to set side time for ourselves, that precious alone time. But I also found I sometimes spend too much time alone because my job is very social, and I don’t make plans to hang out with my friends. For the people who are important in my life, they deserve some of my time too.


  1. Live by your own standards, not somebody else’s.

 Coming out of college, it’s easy to fall into the trap of: I need to start a career, I need to move out, I need to start a family, and other conventional American lifestyle choices. But it’s my life, and I get to decide what counts as successful for me.


  1. It doesn’t matter how many “likes” you get.

 I notice people are a little obsessive with how many likes they get on posts and will delete those that don’t receive more than 50 or so likes on Instagram. For people who have personal brands, this makes sense. But if you use social media for your own personal use, who cares how many people like your picture? I post so my friends, the people I care about, can see what I’m up to or just because I really like the picture or statement. Most of the time, all those likes you get aren’t all from people who are in your life anyway.


  1. It’s okay to splurge, just make sure you have enough for what you need.

 I always count how much money is in my bank account and stress over how much money I spend. But it’s okay to get something I really want once in awhile. Recently, I bought RMS Beauty Living Luminizer because I saw a beauty vlogger post about it, and I liked the way it looked. Let me tell you, I love it. My face never looked so bright and dewy.


  1. You can do things alone, just keep your head focused.

 I have a problem when it comes to doing things by myself because my head starts to think of strange scenarios, and it gets hard to breathe or focus. But staying at home isn’t a good idea. I have to go out. So I normally go out with a plan: hit up the grocery store, grab these things, swing by the pharmacy, etc. This way, I don’t have time to think about “what ifs” or if that guy is actually staring at me funny, or if that lady hates me for almost walking into her.


  1. New things can be scary, but they can also be fun.

 Sometimes, I am a little too comfortable in my comfort zone. But the world offers so much, and I need to experience as much as I can.


  1. Not all girls have neat handwriting.

 Growing up, I had other girls in my family tell me my handwriting was very sloppy, and one even tried to make me change it. Now I like that my handwriting is different and unique. Besides, apparently there are studies out claiming intelligent people have sloppy handwriting, so I’m going with that.


  1. You may not want to start, but it feels really good to clean and to be in a clean house.

 I HATE starting to clean. I just want to sit all day. But once I turn on some music and let the sun in from the blinds, cleaning can be fun. I guess I’m weird, but I like when the house is clean. But I am also extremely lazy.


  1. Keep your to-do and goal lists in sight so you can be reminded about them and check your progress.

 If I don’t see the list, I’ll forget about it. And that’s not the point of making a to-do list, now is it? I also have a whiteboard where I track my daily habits and progress towards my goals so I can be on top of my life.


  1. Check the weather before planning an outfit and before getting dressed in the morning.

 Sometimes the weather will change from what it said last night into the morning. And it’s good to know that, like this past week, one day will be 65 degrees, but it will feel like below 20 and snowing the next day. Welcome to climate change in New Jersey. Plus, I like to be prepared for rain, cold, warmth, sun, wind, whatever is coming my way.


  1. Not writing everyday doesn’t make you any less of a writer as compared to those who do.

 I never write everyday. And it makes me think that maybe I wasn’t meant to write because almost every writer preaches writing everyday and blah blah. But you know what? I write at my own pace. I can’t force creativity. Writing novels or poetry isn’t my job. It’s something I do for expression and fun. So there.


  1. Anger is usually hiding another emotion.

 I learned this in middle school. Anger is always accompanied by another emotion. Whenever I am angry, I try to think about how I’m really feeling and then fix it from there.


  1. Small treats throughout the day help make them better.

 Now this doesn’t have to be food, but it usually is for me! Having something to look forward to just makes everything else feel almost worth it. For example, I bring a chocolate with me for the middle of my closing shifts. That little chocolate has gotten me through some boring hours.


  1. A new planner won’t magically organize your life, but it can help.

 I am a sucker for a better way to organize my very not-busy life. When I was in school, I was trying to find a way to organize work times, classes, appointments, and homework. I found an action day planner that worked during my last semester. And I am a sucker for new planner layouts. But the point of the planner is to sit and plan, and I can do that without researching templates, yet it makes it so much easier.


  1. Don’t do everything at once – spread it out.

 Sometimes I think if I’m going to clean, I have to do the whole house in one day. But by spreading it out throughout the week, I won’t feel so run-down. This applies to other life activities as well.


  1. Don’t waste too much time planning – live a little.

 I get stuck making lists and planning out the entire day that I forget about spontaneity. Not everything has to go as planned, and it most likely will not. Life’s like that.


  1. Asking for help doesn’t mean you failed.

 I have a problem asking for help. I think I can do everything myself. But I obviously don’t know everything and that’s where other people come in. And that’s okay.


  1. Keeping a journal helps keep your emotions in check.

 I kept a journal through my beginning years of college. It really helped me with homesickness and stress. I just started writing again to help with the stress of finding a meaningful job. Writing helps me sort out how I’m feeling and helps me goal-set too.


  1. It’s okay to allow yourself to feel.

 We are always told that we must be happy. Happiness is the ultimate feeling. But it’s also okay to feel sadness and other emotions as well. By letting ourselves feel, we can more easily move on and go back to finding happiness. I’m still learning how to do this, but at least I know now that I don’t have to be happy all the time.


  1. Beauty starts with taking care of your skin and body first.

 No matter how much product I slap on my skin, it’ll still be dry if I don’t drink enough water. Or I’ll have tired eyes if I don’t get the right vitamins. So the main takeaway is drink enough water and moisturize, people. And also make healthy choices. Feeling good also helps you look good. Confidence really does show.

Looking back, I can see I have come a long way from who I used to be, and thankfully it’s been for the better. What has life taught you so far?

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