20 Important Life Lessons I Learned In 20 Years
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20 Important Life Lessons I Learned In 20 Years

You're not as wise as you think you are, but that doesn’t mean you have nothing worth saying.

20 Important Life Lessons I Learned In 20 Years
Emma Lynn Walsh

Two whole decades are in the books. Well... almost. In 20 years, I've accumulated a number of obscure movie quotes, trivial facts about the world, and potentially some very personal life lessons that apply solely to myself. Maybe. I guess we'll see. Here's to 20 years done and a life (usually) well-lived.

  1. Trust is not naive. Nor is it a sign of weakness. Nor is it bad for your health. It's OK to trust people, even when people suck.
  2. Even if life sometimes sucks, you don't have to add to it. Even if people sometimes suck, you don’t have to be one of them.
  3. There is always a nice way to state your opinion. You do not have to be rude in order to have an opinion. However, sometimes just having an opinion is enough to be called a bitch — don’t let that stop you.
  4. Nice and cute are not the same thing; do not feel obligated to state your opinion “cutely.” You are not obligated to make yourself small in order to make others more comfortable.
  5. You shouldn't have to drastically change in order to make friends. Or even semi-change. The cool thing about friendships is they should be accepting. Sure, they should challenge you to be a better version of yourself, but they should never challenge you to be a different version of yourself.
  6. If you do have to change to a not-so-you version of you in order to keep/make friends, odds are they are not the kind of friends you need in your life. Or actual friends at all.
  7. When you find better friends, love them well. Good friends are hard to come by, but they shouldn’t be hard to keep - it should be second nature.
  8. Don't hold too tightly, you can't force someone to stay who doesn't want to. This goes for any relationship you have - friendships or more intimate.
  9. Which means if you have to beg someone to stay, you've already lost. As soon as you have to convince someone not to walk away from you, it’s too late. You deserve to be loved by someone who gets joy out of loving you.
  10. Eat that ice cream. No questions asked. It is always acceptable and always worth it.
  11. And that pasta. If your diet tells you no carbs, it’s lying to you.
  12. Take that nap. Odds are if your body is telling you it really wants to go to sleep right then and there, it needs sleep. You’ll feel better and healthier by listening to it.
  13. Then go outside. If you want to run, run. If you don’t, well don’t. But find something engaging to do outside. Not to be skinny, but to be healthy. Sunshine is good for your soul, and your skin.
  14. Find a good book to read. Read it. Then repeat. Often and thoroughly.
  15. Be healthy, take care of your body, but know that you can be healthy without fitting into the same jeans your wore in middle school (even if you’re the same height you were then.)
  16. Your skin will never be perfect, but neither will your life so just learn to love it anyway. No. I’m serious. I don’t know why that zit bothers you so much, but let me just say this as clearly as possible — no one but you thinks its the end of the world.
  17. Don't drink shitty coffee. I’m not sure how else to say this one. You should enjoy every cup of coffee (and wine) you drink. If you don’t, find a better one.
  18. Be thoughtful, like actually thoughtful, the kind where you actually think about other people. Not the thoughtful that is beneficial for you, but the kind that helps the world be more understanding.
  19. Doing a bad thing does not make you a bad person. Yes, you will screw up. Yes, it sucks. No, you are not unworthy of compassion, love, forgiveness or joy.
  20. You really are not as wise, knowledgeable or cool as you think you are, but that doesn’t mean you have nothing worth saying. Actually, you have a lot worth saying, and also a lot worth hearing, in case you were wondering.
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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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