+ musings // goodbye 20s.

November 10, 2017

30 years have come and gone, and I couldn’t be more excited to start the next decade off more unapologetic and myself than ever before.

There are so many lessons that I have learned in my 20s, and everything in those “top 20” listicles are true. The below are fifteen (very related and intertwined topics) that have truly changed my life and I share how they have personally affected me.

  1. Know yourself. Be you. Be different.
    • I was taught in many ways to be the same as everyone else, to study hard, get a good job, get married and have children. To go by life unnoticed and as a good citizen was how I was supposed to live. I realized early on that I was different, that I wasn’t going to fit into this mold my parents expected me to fit into. And its been quite the challenge to fight to be myself. My favorite quote to encourage you to keep fighting, to be brave and courageous. 
  2. Love and be loved, especially yourself.
    • Like many life lessons, this sounds so simple and yet is one of the hardest lessons and one that I know I will revisit frequently. I was almost forced to take a look at myself and instead of hiding from all the things I hated and wanted to change as I did in previous years, I decided life would be easiest and best by accepting all of me, flaws and all. And to love each and every one of those because the culmination of it all were what made me. Know that you are enough.
  3. Trust yourself.
    • Intuition is an amazing gift and I know mine is right 99.9% of the time.
  4. Speak up, you have a voice.
    • Related to #1, I grew up thinking I didn’t have a voice. By the time I realized I had a voice, I had told myself that it wasn’t worth hearing/sharing. And it wasn’t until much later that I learned that most people used theirs often and to say some pretty terrible things. So why did I wait so long to find and use mine? Because I lived in fear of what everyone else thought.
  5. People don’t care (about you).
    • What I mean by that is, I was too busy caring about what other people thought of me, what I did, what I had to say, and in the end you learn that no one cares. So start being you, using your voice now instead of later. And if someone does end up caring for the right reasons (he/she is actually acres) or for the wrong reasons (he/she is insecure), you’ll know.
  6. Do not live in fear.
    • Another one of those juggernauts that I still fight through every day, but this quote helps me make sense of it best: 
  7. Life takes time.
    • I had to learn to be patient, and let go of control. I spent so much time trying to speed time up. I know now that I can only do so much, and everything else is up to time. 
  8. There is a season in life for everything.
    • I used to think that life was all the same, one long marathon. It may be a marathon but there are sprints, walks and down time rolled up into that same marathon. While I was traveling, I was excited by the prospect of continued travel for years to come. But then I got really tired of living out of a suitcase, of newness all the time, and wanted familiarity, comfort and ease.
  9. Change is the only constant.
    • No second is ever the same as the one before. And nothing is set in stone. I may have set a goal but that doesn’t mean I have to keep going until I reach it. I can change anything, anytime for whatever reason.
  10. Timing is everything.
    • In my career, in love, in friendships, in chance encounters..
  11. No one is the same.
    • People love in different ways. People are ready at different times. Don’t expect people to think, process, live the way you do.
  12. And because no one is the same, don’t compare yourself to others.
    • The moment I stopped looking at everyone else and focused on myself was when everything changed. 
  13. You and your friends will change.
    • I used to think that friends were supposed to be in your life forever, that friendships were measured by how many years you were together. How wrong I was about that! Friends are those that are there for you, those that drop what they are doing for you, to listen, to come watch bad movies, to binge eat ice cream, to get on a plane and go somewhere new. Life happens and friends get married, have children, move away, and though that may change how often you talk or meet, they are still there for you. Vice versa, there are people who you thought were friends, or might have been your friend for a short or long period of time, and decided to consciously drift or push you away, or not make the effort you needed them to make. People change, and therefore your friends and friendships will change. I was hurt in the past by old friends, and now I know it is a fact of life.
  14. Projection is perception.
    • I learned that we can only see what we already know and believe to be true, so in a sense, everything is subjective. I have and continue to project a lot of things, assume things about people, without knowing the full or actual truth. This is a challenge I am still working through and would love your thoughts on how to best acknowledge and correct it!
  15. Traveling puts things into perspective.
    • It goes kind of hand-in-hand with how no one cares, and has helped me come to know and love myself. When I travel I am reminded of how big the world is and how little of a space I occupy. All of my fears and worries seem so insignificant compared to where I am at the moment, and similar to looking up at a night sky full of stars, I am in awe of it all.