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23 Lessons You Learn To Cherish By 23

It’s my birthday so I can reflect on the last year of my life if I want to.

Resolutions are hard to keep, so instead, I like to look back on the year I’ve had on every single birthday. These are all the lessons I’ve learned, both good and bad. I think it’s important to remember what you have and what you’ve learned because it helps you grow. If you don’t grow you will never achieve your goals and dreams. So here are some of the lessons I learned in my 22nd year.

  1. Don’t let your demons become monsters by letting them motivate your decisions and feelings.
  1. People are going to lie to you because they don’t want to hurt your feelings. Understand that they don’t respect you enough to tell you the truth.
  1. Let yourself be consumed by your passions. They will be there for you when you’re so overcome with emotion you can barely breathe.
  1. Trust your instincts and what they are telling you. They are almost always right.
  1. Cut the toxic people out. They spread like cancer and have no cure. It will hurt at first saying goodbye to friendships that have so many memories attached. But in the long run, you will be happier.
  1. Your rejections and mistakes don’t define you.
  1. Every experience you have is irreplaceable and so are the people you have them with. Don’t try to replicate them, remember them.
  1. Stop trying to be somebody you’re not just because you’re uncomfortable. Who cares if they don’t like you because you didn’t laugh at the right part of the joke. Laugh anyway.
  1. Know when you need to walk away and when you should fight for what you want. Some things are better left unsaid, while others should be screamed at the top of your lungs.
  1. You are all the good things that people say you are. Believe in those good things.
  1. Half-hearted apologies are worse than no apology. Mean what you say and always apologize when you are in the wrong. It will hurt your pride, but it will heal your wounds.
  1. Just because you don’t talk about it doesn’t mean you don’t think about it. You grieve differently than others. There is no wrong way to be sad.
  1. He is going to love you even on your worst days. Don’t forget to tell him how much you appreciate him.
  1. Nurture your family because you never know when God will take them. Say “I love you” every chance you get and never leave without a hug.
  1. Love yourself above everything else. Stop comparing yourself to everyone around you. You are the only you that there will ever be. Embrace your stretch marks, they are years lived not flaws.  
  1. Always handwrite your love into every card. Your grandparents appreciate it more than you think.
  1. Call your grandparents and talk to them about your life.
  1. Live in the moment. Don’t let anything or anyone ruin your day, especially a day that is important to you.
  1. Always read through your work before you click send. Spellcheck is not a reliable editor.
  1. Public Relations was the right choice. Don’t second-guess yourself. You’re on the right path. Keep working towards your dreams.
  1. The hard times will make you realize just how much love you have in your life. Your friends and your boyfriend will be there for you even when you’re on the ground sobbing hysterically. Appreciate them, love them, and hug them.
  1. Your grandma loved you very much and is still looking out for you from above. You will miss her every single day and you will cry every time something reminds you of her. You will get through the hard days where all you want to do is call her. She is in a better place. You will see her again. Be strong but don’t ever be afraid to take time to yourself when you’re having a hard day without her. Self-care is important too and nobody will ever understand your grief or sadness. That is okay. She is okay now.

It’s important to reflect. Reflecting helps heal your soul both physically and mentally. Twenty-two was a roller coaster of a year for me, but I wouldn’t have changed a single thing about it. I experienced my highest highs and lowest lows, some days seemed never-ending, while others seemed to go by almost too fast. If you’re ever feeling a little bit lost on your path I recommend sitting down and writing a list of everything you’ve learned and everything you’ve conquered in the last year. It will help you become the best version of yourself. Let your lessons become your blessings!  

Featured image via Jan Valle on Pexels



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