18 Life Lessons I Learned in 18 Years
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18 Life Lessons I Learned in 18 Years

It's amazing how much you learn just over the course of 18 years

18 Life Lessons I Learned in 18 Years
Julie Bentley

Just a while ago I turned eighteen. The much anticipated age by those who crave independence. But my turning of age moved me to reminisce and think about how far I’ve come in my life. It’s a crazy thing to think that once you were 6 years old and now you’re just not. I’ve learned a lot of things over my eighteen years on this planet, and some things I wish I had known earlier in my life. So, I decided to share some of these things. So I can pass on some things maybe you need to know that I’ve taken into importance into my life. Some serious and some not, but my wish is that you would take them into consideration.

1. Keep special things. My best friend moved away to Maryland when I was in the 8th grade and gave me a box of our little inside jokes and notes which led to save almost everything from that point on. Notes that little kids had written me, pictures of old friends, my first concert ticket, etc. I highly encourage you to keep the things that matter to you even if you don’t think it will matter to you later. It will. Keep it.

2. Try not to get wrapped up in your present situations and struggles. Have perspective. If it won’t affect your life 6 years from that moment, then it doesn’t matter. That essay your teacher wrote all over with all of the corrections that made you cry in the bathroom will not cause you to be unemployed. I promise. I tell you this now because yes I cried in the bathroom because my essay was bad and I am employed.

3.Never EVER give up the things you’re good at and love because someone says you’re not good at it. Every professional in the world was once a beginner. You pursue the things you love. Even if it’s saying what you feel into a camera and putting it on the internet. Sounds funny but Jenna Marbles is laughing all the way to the bank with her 2.5 million dollar annual pay.

4. Love your parents with everything in you. I was sitting back and thinking about how many clothes my parents have bought me over my entire lifetime and was absolutely astounded. Because kids grow out of clothes and shoes like it’s their life dependency. It’s a lot, and all those Abercrombie t-shirts you wanted in middle school were a lot too. Love your parents, because they love you so much.

5. Never think a TV show, movie, or video game is more worth watching than nature. Don’t get too caught up in modern day technology that you forget about the wonderful world that we live in. Take a moment out of every day to appreciate the world you live in.

6. Be your own person. People will gravitate towards originality than they will cookie cutter people. Dress how you feel, like who and what you like, and love what you do. No one can take you away from you. You are entitled to do whatever makes you happy; do it.

7. Popularity does not matter. In middle school I remember one of the most popular girls in school said hello to me at the mall and I almost went into cardiac arrest. It mattered so much to me back then that when I went through high school and made my own friends that weren’t popular like me, I realized it didn’t matter. I was happy with my friends either way. It may matter in middle school and high school, but there’s not a slot for that when writing your resume.

8.Go to your senior prom. Proms are lame and they play bad music but dancing around like crazy people with your friends and dancing with your prom date might not ever happen again once you graduate. SO GO!

9.Be nice to everyone. There was a kid in my class that, no joke, ate his dandruff and sat right in front of me. He never did his assignments, and always asked for my notes and never once did I turn him away. If you radiate positive energy into the universe, you will get it back. You don’t want to be remembered as “the girl/boy who was mean to me in school.”

10. Say yes sometimes, and I don’t mean to bad things but when someone invites you somewhere and you’re feeling kind of ‘eh’, just go. Some of my best memories have come from me wallowing in self-pity at home and just saying yes. Don’t miss a single ice cream run with your friends.

11. Be honest. My mother always used to, and still tells me “all meanness starts with lying.” Well, as we all know, mother wasn’t wrong. Say what you feel and don’t hold back. People admire those who are honest. But really, you want to have a person brave enough to tell you that there’s something stuck in your teeth, right?

12. Be open to try new things. The rule of my house was always “try it, and if you don’t like it you don’t have to do it again.” Whether this applies to food, experiences, hobbies, or whatever; being open to learn and try new things can open up a whole new door to opportunities. Just try it, cause you never know what hidden talents or likes you may have.

13. Never date someone momma doesn’t like. Don’t date someone who makes you feel less of a person and puts their needs and wants before yours. But most importantly, again, don’t date someone momma doesn’t like. Momma is right. Always.

14. Call your grandparents, just because. If your grandparents are like mine, they probably love you very very much. All those times your parents forced you to talk to them when they called was for a reason. Talk to them. Their love for you is abundant, love them back and their time here is limited. So call them, go see them, and tell them you love them.

15. Take care of yourself. Being able to manage stress and prioritize things can be the hardest thing you’ll ever do, but being able to manage these things will help you in the long run. It’s very important to take care of yourself and not let these things overcome you. If you don’t let them overcome you, then they won’t. Even if its taking 30 seconds out of your day and closing your eyes and telling yourself everything is okay, it makes a huge difference.

16. Work hard for everything. Work hard for your money, education, relationships, whatever it might be. Even with the little things. If you work hard for everything you do, it will only lead to success, which will lead to the ultimate satisfaction. Working hard for everything you do in life pays off.

17. Take time to listen to people when they open up to you. Every person you will meet in your lifetime will have such unique stories and advice that are much different from yours. Take time to get to know them and listen to them and what they have to offer you. Especially people who are much older than you. Ask them questions and don’t be shy. Listen.

18. And lastly, but most importantly (excuse all the Justin Bieber references), remember that life is worth living. You have been brought into this very world for a purpose. The exciting thing is, you get to live out your purpose. You get to choose who you are and what you’ll turn out to be in this world and you can decide to be great, life-changing, and inspiring. So do it.

I hope that you will take my eighteen things that I’ve learned from myself and potentially apply them to your life in some form or fashion. I just know that these things have gotten me this far, but where will they take you? Where does your journey begin?

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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