With my twentieth birthday approaching in a few days, I've realized what a crazy ride it's been. I've had a lot of struggles as well as a lot of successes, and most importantly I've learned a TON. I've made a list of the top twenty things I've learned over the course of these past years:
1. It's not that serious.
This has turned out to be my new life motto. Anytime something happens, my first response is always it's not that serious.
2. The rule of 5
If it won't matter in 5 years, don't let it bother you for more than 5 minutes. Which basically goes back to it's not that serious.
3. It's okay to have temporary friends
Not all your friends are "true" friends, and that's okay. I've realized I have situational friends, who I'm really only friends with during a certain time like at school or within a sport or club.
4. But it's important to make "true" friends too
I've been through a lot, especially the past year, and I wouldn't have made it through without a few of my friends. They've been there through the highs and lows and supported everything I've done and ever decision I made. It's important to find positive like-minded people like that.
5. Don't be afraid to try new things
I wouldn't have made the friends I did if I didn't try new things, and it lead me to more clubs, friends, and opportunities as well.
6. If you don't have anything nice to say, just don't respond.
It's one of those basic rules that we all know, right? Yet I still find myself getting into altercations with people because I don't know how to keep my mouth shut. Lately, I've been finding myself getting better and in result, I've been a lot happier.
7. Keep a journal
Sometimes we keep our emotions bottled up, and then we end up exploding. Keeping a journal allows for a safe place for you to write everything down and get it all out. That was you can write whatever you want and get all those feelings out in a way that no one can see.
8. Put the work in your schoolwork
I used to just do enough to get by and pass all my classes, but lately I've been going the extra mile, handing in extra credit, and actually studying and doing my homework. I also have the chance to get a 4.0 which would be awesome. I have actually been less stressed while doing it all as well, and it will set me up better for the future.
9. It's okay to be single
I used to be so jealous of all my friends with boyfriends and would try so hard to find one. Now I realize how happy I've been without one and there's no reason I need one at this point in my life. When God feels I'm ready for one, he will lead me to the right person.
10. Put the phone down
This generation spends so much of their time on-line and we end up missing out on so much of life. If you just take an hour of your day to put your phone down and spend quality time with people, you'll gain so much from it.
11. College should be fun
Yes we pay a lot to go here and we should be getting a good education, but they don't say it's the best years of your life for nothing. It should be fun and enjoyable, and if it's not, you should probably look if you're at the right place. I wasn't, and when I switched, it's like my whole life flipped upside down!
12. Mark everything in your calendar
There's so much going on in your life in college it's impossible to keep track of it all in your head. Make sure you mark it down in your calendar. It takes 2 seconds and it could save you from missing a test, deadline, or even an interview.
13. You don't have to go out every night
You're not going to lose friends if you don't go out every night with them, and if you do, they were never your friend to begin with.
14. You deserve a night out once in awhile
But every once in awhile, put down the books. Like I said before, college should be fun. Take a night out with the girls to relax and just put all the other stress to the side for a night.
15. Take care of your body
I feel like the stress of college is a sickness in itself, but seriously..don't be scared to go to the doctor and ask for medicine. This also means fueling your body with healthy food, too! I know it's easy to just make Ramen or grab some PopTarts but you deserve better than that.
16. Check your e-mail
As you get older, you start to use your email more and more. Professors will e-mail you deadlines and other things like possible job/internship opportunities. If you don't check it, someone else might get to it first.
17. Always keep your resume updated
Having an updated resume is essential as your networking and starting to look for internships. If you don't have a readily available updated resume, you're automatically being counted out.
18. Strong is sexy
Obviously this is the 2017 body trend, but it's so true! Really any body type is beautiful, but I've always been on the stronger/bulkier side. I've always been self-conscious because I'm normally friends with girls that are skinner and shorter than me, but not anymore. I've embraced who I am, and as long as I'm happy with it, then that's all that matters.
19. Pictures are really worth 1000 words
I look back in my albums frequently, and I see a picture which reminds me of a time in my life that I enjoyed. Being nostalgic is one of my favorite hobbies, so I'll never be ashamed for taking too many pics.
20. Life is short, live like it's your last day
I think one of the most important things I've learned is that life is short and it's not guaranteed. I've seen so many young lives taken, some friends, some just acquaintances, but they all leave the same impression. I make sure I live every day like it's my last, so when God calls me to Heaven, I won't regret not doing anything.
You know how you always pull your ear one extra time for good luck? Well here's the extra tid-bit of advice for good measure: