Hello, hello, hello. Not to be in your face about it being my birthday, but hey it’s my birthday. I turned 23 today, and that seems significant to me somehow. I feel sort of like I have my shit together for once in my life. I mean, at the very least my shit is organized into semi-tidy piles. One day I’ll have it all in one place, but for now I’m going to give you some life advice – because I’ve learned a fair amount of valuable information in my 23 years on this earth.
Life Advice From a Newly 23-Year-Old Lady
Alright, “lady” might have been a bit of a stretch – but I’m trying okay. I started shaving my legs more often, and wearing lip liner. This is big progress for me.
Honestly, you probably shouldn’t be taking life advice from me but for some reason, people seem to dig my opinion, so like the needy millennial I am, I’m going to keep giving it.
#1 Be yourself unapologetically
I know this is going to sound incredibly cliche, but life is seriously way too short to spend it trying to be like somebody else. You were created in the image of perfection – I know that can be hard to believe sometimes, but trust me – you were made to do great things. You were made to do things that your sister, or your best friend can’t do. You have something very valuable to add to this world, so don’t you dare shy away from who you are meant to be.
#2 Chase your dreams
If you don’t chase your dreams, they will eventually get away from you. They aren’t going to hide behind the corner and wait for you to decide they are worth chasing. They are going to keep running away, so you’d better start running. Don’t say that you’ll wait until you’re ready, because you are never going to be truly ready, for anything. Take the leap – I promise you that you won’t regret it.
#3 Some people aren’t going to like you
I’ve grown into a loud-mouth, open-minded individual, okay. But here’s the thing, I’ve always been a loud-mouth, open-minded individual, and that doesn’t jive with some people. Some people are very closed-minded and think that their opinion is the only valid one – therefore, I’m not a very popular person in many circles. I’ve come to realize that it doesn’t matter. At the end of the day, I can lay in bed and be proud of the person I’ve become. That’s what matters and that is what feels right in my heart.
#4 You should call your parents
You’re getting older, but so are they. You are their entire world, and I think that we can never fully grasp what that means until we have children of our own, so we need to be patient with them. They have given up a lot for us to be happy, healthy little beings, so we should at least call them once a week. They want to hear from us, you know.
#5 Don’t waste your time on people
Friends or partners alike, don’t waste your time on people that don’t value your time. It’s very important. You can spend your time doing amazing, wonderful things, so you need to realize just how valuable your time really is: Don’t waste it. If somebody is treating you poorly, make sure they know it. Value yourself enough to stand up for yourself and walk away when necessary.
#6 Education is important
Whether you go to college, university, or either – it is important to keep learning. Everybody’s path looks different, but in some way or another I think it is important to be continuously learning, growing, and thriving. Otherwise our brains become useless, and there is so so so much potential up there.
#7 Don’t settle
I mean this in regards to jobs, relationships, friendships, and every other aspect of your life. Don’t stop until you get everything you’ve ever dreamed of. Seriously, life begins at the end of your comfort zone. You aren’t going to get everything you want by staying in your hometown and working at the grocery store. You can still do those things, but make sure you are pushing yourself to achieve more. Fulfillment is something you should always strive for – whatever that looks like for you.
#8 You need to believe in something bigger than yourself
I don’t care what God you believe in, or if you don’t believe in any… I truly believe it is important to believe that there is something bigger than us out there, because otherwise you will go mad. In times of darkness, we need to have something to believe in – something to make it all make sense. Personally, I just believe in the power of the universe, and that’s enough for me. My mother is a devoted Catholic, and that is what makes sense for her. Whatever it is, make sure you have some sort of faith to fall back on – because we all need a little help sometimes.
#9 Don’t fear help
Talking to a therapist is important. I think at some point in our lives, we all need to seek treatment for our mental health. Nobody’s mental health is 100% perfect – we all have negative and intrusive thoughts from time to time and you shouldn’t be ashamed of seeking help. We simply cannot grow without pressure and guidance. Don’t fear the change.
#10 We should read more books
This past year I’ve really gotten into reading more than I ever have in my entire life and it has been an incredible journey. I’ve gone on tons of adventures, and met dozens of people, all from the comfort of my living room, porch, and lunch room at work. Reading is great for our minds in a million ways – pick up a book today and start reading more.
#11 Listen to other people’s life advice
Whether I am at a bus stop, or talking to a neighbour, I think it is important to listen to life advice from everybody who is willing to offer it because we all have something different to bring to the table. Everybody has had different experiences and they have learned something different. Listen to everybody’s story and take what you can from each of them.
There you have it – 11 pieces of life advice from someone who has been 23 for 4 hours. If you have any bits of life advice that you’d like to share, I invite you to do so in the comments, or to tweet it to me. Thank you.