As no human is perfect, life isn’t perfect either. On February 25th, I turned nineteen by the grace of God. I bless His name for all the beautiful blessings and for the ugly trails of life for; life would not be life without the combination of the two. All that we go through in life good and bad is a part of our destiny and it is there to shape our character for the good or the bad, the outcome is in our hands. Throughout my nineteen years, I have accumulated valuable life lessons; some of which are from my own personal life experiences and others are simply from learning from other’s mistakes. Without further ado, here are nineteen things that I have learned in nineteen years.
1. It’s okay to say no.
If you really don’t want to do something; don’t feel obligated to say yes, especially when it comes to boys. Also, don’t say yes when you already have a million things to do, you will crash and burn.
2. Don’t let fear stop you, instead challenge it.
Fear is the enemy of progress and leads us to underestimate our abilities. All my biggest life accomplishments came with great fear prior to their realization, therefore don’t let fear stop you instead challenge it by pushing forward regardless of the odds and the “what ifs”.
3. In times of pain and trouble remember that it won’t always be like this.
Being the emotional crybaby that I am, I had to quickly learn that the not so pretty seasons that we endure in life actually do come to pass and to erase the over dramatic ideology of, “my life is over” because it is pure nonsense. Knowing that things will get better gives hope and brings new strength to get over those difficult seasons of life.
4. The only opinion of who you are that truly matters is your own.
As humans, we have a natural longing to be liked by others and we give importance to what people think of us, however, it is our own opinion of who we perceive ourselves to be that has a daily impact on our being. When you perceive yourself as beautiful, strong, smart, kind, funny, talented, etc. all things positive, then that positive vibe within reflects without. Other’s opinion of who we are doesn’t mean anything until you start believing in their opinion. Thoughts are powerful, they can either build us up or destroy us so, choose to build yourself up with positive thoughts.
5. Friends come and go but your family remains, therefore show them the most love.
Like my mom always says, your family is your first best friend. Don’t take your family for granted just because you know they will always be there; no one knows how long “always” will last.
6. Don’t underestimate yourself.
Some of our strengths are hidden until we actually try; if you never try then you will never discover your hidden strengths. Go for it and you might be surprised with the outcome and if you fail don’t be discouraged just get up and keep moving forward.
7. You can not please everyone.
When you please the majority, know that minority isn’t pleased and it’s okay. Don’t trouble your soul over the emotions of others, when you know you tried your best; some people just like to hate and complain.
8. Stay in your lane, fix your eyes forward and do you, honey.
Comparison can be an evil thing and as girls, we are guilty of this act. We were all created different and have different stories so, do not compare your story with the people around you. Do not definitely compare your life with what you consume on social media because people only share the highlights, not the struggles.
9. Good things come to those who wait.
Waiting isn’t fun but it’s worth it so, be patient. I rather go slow and steady in order to receive the best than fast and unsteady and have to settle for less. Relationship wise, my motto is if you don’t want to kiss a bunch of frogs then patiently wait for your Prince Charming for; good things come to those who wait.
10. Take positive criticism as an opportunity for improvement and not as an insult.
This one is a hard one because no one likes hearing their flaws for it hurts but when it comes from people who want to see you grow, then it is for your best. Just listen to their advice with a heart of gratitude and try not to get offended.
11. What comes out of your mouth in a gossip circle, eventually will leave the circle and get into the ear of the person whom which it concerns.
The truth is we are all nosey and like to partake in some good gossip once in a while or for others every hour. The one thing that I learned from my young middle school days is that what is said in a gossip circle will eventually get to the person whom which the gossiping was about. To avoid drama and to respect the golden rule of treating others the way you want to be treated; always avoid participating or contributing in a gossip circle.
12. Your family knows you best and your parents know best (most times).
Always take into consideration the advice that is given by your family for your family knows you best, after all, they are your day ones. We forget that our parents were once teenagers, in result when they give us advice and warnings, we believe that they just don’t understand. In reality, they actually do because there is nothing new under the sun in regards to life experiences.
13. Think with your mind and not with your emotions.
Emotions go from zero to one hundred right quick, therefore it is not wise to make decisions or say things based on your emotions; or else you might regret it. Take a minute to logically think things over in all circumstances. Also, avoid taking all things to heart, some things we just need to shake off.
14. Don’t let uncontrollable things consume you.
This is my secret to happiness. Why lose your sanity over things you can’t change, it’s a waste of time and it puts your sanity in danger. I truly believe that everything happens for a reason, even when the reason isn’t clear.
15. Know who you are and share it with others.
We all have different cultures, like different things and have different morals. In a world of diversity, if you don’t know who you are, you will conform into someone who you are not. Embrace your identity by not being ashamed and share it with others so that others become educated.
16. Always give it your one hundred and ten percent.
If you are going to do something, do it wholeheartedly and give it all you got. The blood, sweat, and tears will be worth it for, it will make a big difference and make you remarkable from the rest.
17.Expect to get hurt in life and always forgive.
No one likes to get hurt but it doesn’t mean that we don’t hurt each other. No one is perfect so, always forgive those who hurt you. Holding grudges isn’t healthy and deprives you of having mental peace, therefore know when you forgive it is more for yourself than it is for the other person.
18. Take responsibility for your mistakes and be quick to apologize.
Wise are those who can recognize when they are at fault and who are quick to apologize. Put away the pride and always try to make things right; no matter hard it may be, at least try.
19. Materialistic things won’t bring you into heaven so, invest in your best self.
Yes, I love all things pretty and enjoy shopping but the hard truth is that in the end, all the materialistic things mean nothing. What truly matters is who you were, what you did and how you made others feel. If I have the prettiest outfit but an ugly heart, then I have failed; this is what keeps me humble and motivates me to be the best me that I can be.
Hope that you made it till the end and if you did, God bless your soul!