Being in my 20’s, I’ve had a lot of lessons I needed to go through, many of which I’m still developing to this day.
For a long time, I’ve had this mentality that whenever something bad happened or whenever I’d go through a negative situation, it was the universe’s way of punishing me. I’d always think, “Why is this happening to me?! What did I do to deserve this?”
Turns out that I wasn’t being punished. I was given lessons – lessons that have helped me heal and grow into the person I am today.
There are many more lessons that I’ve learned so far, but I’d like to focus on these 14.
Life Lessons I Learned By 25
No one is perfect
It’s okay to make mistakes. It’s okay to not know all the answers, even if you’ve been experienced in something for so long. It’s okay to have your off days. It’s okay to retreat from the world for a while. It’s okay to have differing opinions from everyone else. It’s okay to laugh at yourself. It’s okay to fall down and get back up again.
Forgiveness doesn't mean going back to the way things were
It means accepting what happened and moving forward from it. It’s okay to remember what happened, but it’s also okay to release the feelings you’ve had from that experience. It’s okay to mend relationships with the other party, but it’s also okay to peacefully let them go.
It's okay to be alone
You are your own person. You are a whole being. By being alone, or independent, you begin to discover who you truly are and the potentials you’re capable of achieving. You begin to connect with the you who’s meant to shine. It’s completely okay to receive help and guidance from others, but remember that you’re ultimately the one who makes the final decisions in your life. Embrace going to the movies, eating at a restaurant, shopping, or traveling to another country by yourself (keep your safety in mind though). There are many advantages to doing stuff on your own, such as taking all the time you need, paying for your own things, choosing what you like, and figuring out what you love – all without the influence of others.
There's no such things as 'overnight success'
Every success story takes months and even years to take flight. Those sitting in the front seat see only the results, whereas those behind the curtains experience the sleepless nights, worries, doubts, trial, and errors. Nonetheless, their hearts and souls were still full of passion, determination, inspiration, and devotion, which is how and why I believe they were able to achieve their “overnight success.”
Money comes and goes, but some experiences happen only once in a lifetime
When people ask me for advice about whether or not they should pursue or experience something that is for the greatest good in the development of their career or personal life, I’d always give them the green light to go for it. Of course, it’s more challenging when you’re a student or are tight with your financial situation, so think of such experiences this way: treat yourself to a delicious meal on your birthday, get that sweater you’ve been eyeing when you pass that class, or travel to a different city for a day and check out their story. Not all experiences have to be extravagant. You can find some of the best experiences right under your nose.
Actions do speak louder than words
When you pay attention to someone’s words more, you set yourself up for certain expectations, and if their actions don’t follow what they’ve said, the chance of you being disappointed is high. Saying doesn’t mean doing. Which brings me to the next lesson on the list.
Stay silent about your plans
And shock the world with the results. Sure, people may get the idea of what you’re trying to achieve, but don’t tell anyone the details of your journey. Instead, work silently, diligently, and passionately. Of course, you’re going to have to tell those who are also part of what you’re working on, and that’s fine. The main message of this lesson is to have your dreams and goals free from the energy that may disrupt the rhythm of momentum.
Gratitude is key to abundance
Being grateful for the things you already have opens the door for blessings that are still coming your way. Both big and small blessings matter. Simple blessings, such as showering with clean water, is already an overlooked privilege to be grateful for. Try incorporating or reserving at least 10 minutes of your daily routine to write in any notebook at least three things you’re grateful for. We all need a good reminder to keep our feet on the ground.
You can always reinvent yourself
Who you were back then doesn’t define who you are now and who you aim to become. Going back to lesson number one, we’re all humans. We’re constantly healing and learning, and when we do those, our mindset, energy, and outlook on life expands. If technology continues to evolve, why can’t humans?
Age is just a number
Don’t let your age limit what you can and can’t do, feel, or think in life. But, do be mindful of what your body can safely physically accomplish.
The strongest love you’ll ever experience is the one you have for yourself
The love you have for yourself is what essentially sets the standard for any other love, present or future, in your life. When you learn to love yourself, it’ll be easier for you to accept love from and give love to others. You’ll be able to love someone else wholeheartedly because you’ve accepted and loved yourself for who you truly are – all of your strengths and imperfections. By embodying this, you’ll be able to accept and understand others for their own strengths and imperfections, therefore loving them for who they truly are.
What and who you surround yourself with does influence who and what you do
Surround yourself with positive energy. Know that inanimate objects do have strong energies with them as well, which is why it’s important to declutter your things at least twice a year in order to bring new, refreshing energies with you. Also, surround yourself with people who talk about their passions and goals. People who uplift others and focus more on solutions. People who put down the phone and genuinely listen to you when you’re talking. People who you feel that you can be your true self around.
What you think and believe is what you receive
When you’re constantly thinking about being sad and depressed, you’ll continue being sad and depressed. However, when you start believing that you can do this and achieve that, chances are, you will do this and achieve that. Think about your feelings in the morning, right after waking up. When you’re already thinking, “Today’s going to be a sucky day,” won’t most of your day end up being a sucky day? Now, instead of automatically determining how your day will go, try taking a couple of deep breathes after waking up, and avoid checking social media on your phone. Tell yourself that you’ll have a relaxing, or even exciting, day ahead of you. You can do it. In order to make it happen, do your best to actually believe in it and yourself.
Love the journey, enjoy the destination
We are all the storytellers of our lives, but if we dive right to the ending, we won’t fully absorb how or why we got there, or what and who we’ve met along the way. We won’t be able to understand the lessons we learnt, the growth we’ve achieved, or the happiness we’ve accumulated. The heartaches or losses that helped make us stronger. The passion and drive that kept pushing us to reach the end of the book. Think of the destination as the frosting on the cake, while the journey is the cake itself. You’ve got to bake and build the cake before frosting to finally enjoy and celebrate.