23 Things I've Learned So Far in 2016

23 Things I've Learned So Far in 2016

"Take pride in how far you have come and have faith in how far you can go."

It's the day of move-in for my junior year of college, and I'm thinking, 2016 has surely gone by fast. I've gone on new adventures and have traveled to the other side of the world. I gained new friendships and have lost some as well. 2016 was a mixture of growing up and falling down. I've learned new things about myself that I didn't know existed and new things about myself that I tried hiding but couldn't. I've fallen in love, out of love, back in love, and in the love moment where you're just confused on what's going on. As I reminisce all the good and bad 2016 has brought me, there are 23 things I've definitely learned about myself and life, including things I already knew, but needed to be reminded of once again.

1. Be yourself, everyone else is taken.

2. People come and go. It sucks and it hurts, but not all will stay and stand by your side, no matter how close you are.

3. Travel as much as you can and see what the world has to offer.

4. Don't have the mindset of everyone you know being nice. Just because you're friends with them, it doesn't mean you know how they truly are.

5. Trust takes time. Trust the right people, but don't give it away to people so easily.

6. Love is beautiful, not hurtful.

7. Don't give your heart away. Guard your heart. Once it's out there, it's hard to get it back.

8. Be silly and laugh. Laugh brings a smile to not only your face both those around you.

9. Go out there and meet new people. Make connections and bonds.

10. Make sure you eat right according to your body and health.

11. Although you should eat healthy, remember there are so much to try in this world. Try a variety of diverse foods and drinks.

12. Go out and have fun! When you get older, you won't have as much time since you'll most likely be working full time.

13. Don't forget to sleep though. You can't do anything if you're constantly exhausted, which can lead you into becoming unhealthy and sick physically and mentally.

14. Put 100% of effort into everything you do even if you don't succeed.

15. In everything you do, you never lose. You only win or learn.

16. Forgive. We are not perfect. We make mistakes and make decisions that not only impact ourselves but those around us. Life is too short to hold onto grudges and hatred towards others when you can move forward and grow.

17. Love unconditionally. In a world that's turning into hate, all you can do is love and hope the rest will too.

18. Follow your dreams and passions. Don't let anyone bring you down or tell you you're not good enough.

19. Love yourself. No human being will love you as much as you should. If you can't love and cherish yourself, how can you expect others to do that for you? There are people out there can help you to realize self love, but in the end, you are the one who decides to love yourself.

20. Don't rush to find a boyfriend or girlfriend. Don't force it. Having a significant other takes time, effort, and being open, and if you're not willing to put that into the relationship, don't look for one. Wait until you're ready. Your time will come.

21. Learn, learn, learn. There is never nothing to learn and you can never learn too much.

22. Life can get hard, but stay strong! You got this. No one's life is ever easy, but that doesn't mean it's impossible.

23. Breathe.

Cover Image Credit: kodemag.com

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Here One Day, Gone The Next

A valuable lesson learned.

Since I was a little girl, my mother has always told me that people enter and leave your life for a reason. Each and every person in your life has a reason for being there and in the moment even if it does not feel like it, there is a purpose.

Thinking about this, I thought it would better me to do some reflecting on the people who were once so relevant in my life that are no longer remotely in it. Some good and some bad, all these people taught me something valuable that I take with me every day.

I am a 19 year old girl, so the capacity at which girlfriends have entered and left my life is rapid. The most clear I can think of were my initial roommates and some friends from my first university before transferring. A few of these girls are no longer in my life and as morbid as that sounds it is for the better. My first university was a dark time for me and in that I found myself trying to conform to a type a girl I was not. In realizing this was not for me, I had moments of conflict with people whose morals and values differed from mine.

In the moment, this felt like the end. Like I would never have friends and that my life was quite literally over. Over a year later, not the case. Many talks and realizations later, I came to my senses and was ok with the fact that I had my bitchy moments when unhappy with my own life and took that out on people who were having their own struggles as well. This caused a large clash but looking back taught me that I am not only very hard to live with but someone who rarely stands up for myself in conflict situations. Conflict stresses me out and because I kept all my issues to myself, I made all the drama that much worse.

Like I said, a year later now, I can look back and say yes, I made mistakes when it came to certain people at my last university but have now grown so much because of it. I am now able to see where I went wrong and what caused the all the drama initially. Even though I never started drama, (or thought I did not) it was there and followed me, so somehow I contributed to it. Drama is self inflicted. Always.

So to the people that were in my life then and not now, thank you. You taught me the valuable lesson to never give up and be ok with drama in some cases. No one is perfect, everyone makes mistakes. I have made plenty trust me.

The people that were once so important in my life that no longer are are probably the hardest people to reflect on. I consider myself to have a very large heart so when someone means so much one minute and nothing the next, I feel an extreme sadness come over me. I have trouble with letting go of things especially the past. This is detrimental in my case because I sit and mope about what I could have done differently when in reality, the answer is nothing. Everything happens for a reason, so to those specific few who were in my life but are now not, you served you purpose. So thank you.

For one particular case, I wonder what the purpose was. I had a friend who I thought at the time had immense meaning in my life. One day the conversation was non stop and next we were acquaintances who passed each other on the street and looked away. Now that may be because of the society we live in, but it is so hard to grasp the idea that you can share every life detail with someone and feel so close but as short as 24 hours later feel so far apart. Maybe the lesson here is that if you think you know someone so well and then they leave, maybe you never really knew them at all. I think I misjudged the person I so greatly confided in, in that moment. However, there was so much good so I try to focus on that, and wait for another realization for why its better that this person is no longer in my life.

The people that stand out to me that are no longer important to my life taught me to not only be ok with who I am as a person but to think less and let life happen. Like I said earlier, what my mom said was right. Some people are not in your life forever but when they are there is a clear purpose for why.

I also think in this time of reflection, it is important to realize that anyone in your life can be there one day and not the next. Yes, this sounds a lot like death which is very dark and true but even friendships and relationships can be so strong for one second and gone the next.

It is important to cherish the now and live in the moment. There is no time to focus on what could have been or what will be.

Cover Image Credit: Isabelle Adler

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Yes, I Know I Don't Say It Enough, So Here's A Huge 'Thank You' To My Parents

Thank you for showing me unconditional love.

Thank you.

If there is a word that describes more gratitude than just a simple “thank you,” I would express that 100 times. I know I do not say it enough, and I know that I never will, but thank you for everything.

Thank you for giving me life.

Thank you for being the most loving people.

Thank you for supporting me.

Thank you for the countless hours you spent driving from different activities, having to sit through sporting events, and supporting my variety of different career paths. Never once did you let me know that I was terrible at a single thing, even though I was.

Thank you for always giving me the best piece of advice, “when you put your mind to it, you can accomplish anything.”

Thank you for allowing me to spread my wings and go to school over 1,500 miles away to Texas that gave me a need for traveling. My anxious feet could not thank you enough for shipping me off to Europe for an entire semester to let me travel the world, considering I have now been to over 10 countries.

Thank you for letting me learn from my failures. Or when I would never listen to you guys, even though you have always been right from the beginning.

Thank you for showing me that nobody's perfect, but with hard work, dedication and love… you can come close.

Thank you for always being there when I need it the most.

Thank you always picking up the phone whenever I call.

Thank you for knowing that all the times I say “I hate you,” “You’re annoying,” or any other negative words, it is just code for “I love you.”

Thank you for showing me unconditional love.

Most importantly, thank you for giving me a voice to allow me to become the person that I am supposed to be.

P.S. Amanda and Zack, try topping that to be the favorite child ;)

Cover Image Credit: Zoe Wright

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