Today is my 25th birthday. I'm a quarter of a century old, and I'm not going to lie about it, I have been freaking out about this day.
In elementary school we were asked to write where we saw ourselves at 25. I of course said that I would be married, with two kids, a chocolate lab and a Ford Explorer. Instead, I'm single, childless and celebrating my 25th birthday with my best friend in Europe. Which I think is way more awesome than any "adult version" of myself I could have ever dreamed up.
I'm excited about 25, and looking forward to all the exciting experiences I have yet to live. I've learned a lot in this first quarter of a century, and wanted to share some of it with y'all...
1. Your age should not define when you hit those milestones in your life, like when to get married, when to have kids etc. We are all different, so our paths will all look a little different.
2. Friends. It's about quality, not quantity.
3. You are never "stuck" in life, you will always have options. (wisdom from my dad)
4. Don't be afraid to dream big. Reach for the moon because even if you miss you'll still land among the stars.
5. Don't be afraid to take a chance. The biggest risks usually offer the biggest rewards.
6. Forgiving yourself is so important. Don't ever think a mistake you've made is too big to forgive.
7. People think about you a lot less often than you think, so quit worrying about it.
8. Don't cling to a relationship that doesn't work because of fear. You will feel way more lonely with the wrong person than you will by yourself.
10. Find a career mentor. Someone who isn't a friend or family member, who you can talk about your goals and visions, someone who understands the industry. This will make all the difference in your work life.
11. Your family is crazy, but guess what? So are you.
12. You need to learn who you are alone before you're committed to someone else. It took me roughly 24 years to learn this. I'm still figuring out who I am daily, but I've never felt more comfortable in my own skin.
13. You're never too old to start chasing a new dream. If you're worried about how much time it will take, don't. That time will pass regardless.
14. A sincere smile (and some lipstick) will always be your best accessory. (wisdom from my grandma)
15. Be present. I'm still working on this daily, but I'm inspired by how well my mom can do this.
16. Life is about relationships. Wether it be family, friends, or in your career.
17. You need to know what brings you peace, what restores you. For me it's hot tea, a beautiful sunset, the trees, and going home.
18. Life is hard, and there will be moments of sadness. Don't be afraid to let people help you through the hard times.
19. Treat others with kindness, because you are no better than anyone else.
20. Love yourself.
21. There's a big world out there. Try to think of the big picture when you find yourself worried or upset about the small things.
22. Not getting exactly what we want is hard, but each day I see how some of my biggest disappointments have been some of my biggest blessings. There's always a greater plan.
23. Don't be in such a rush to get to the next point in your life. Stop and appreciate where you are now, because once you turn the page on this chapter it won't ever be the same.
24. It's okay to not feel like an adult. I imagined myself a lot more "grown up" by 25, but I've learned that I'll spend the rest of my life "growing up".
25. If all else fails, lean on God. He's the rock that will always be there.