23 Things I Have Learned at 23

So this is 23. 

I am so thankful for 22! I started this blog, moved into my first apartment, landed my first internship, and got engaged!! Last year was filled with so many unique and different experiences. I remember spending my last birthday having dinner with my whole family and dancing with friends in bars downtown and the very next day the world shut down. We all faced diverse challenges in 2020 and there’s no doubt that with that comes growth.

I always like to reflect on my birthday so I came up with this list of things I’ve learned and I hope you enjoy 🙂

  1. You are on your own timeline- “graduate by 21, have a career by 25, be married by 27, and start having kids before you’re 30.” You should never feel like you should be here or there by a certain age or have accomplished this by this time. Your life is exactly that, YOUR life. Don’t compare it to anyone else’s. You are exactly where you are supposed to be. 
  1. You NEVER have to do anything you don’t want to do.
  1. You have to love yourself first- this was a hard lesson for me. I spent so much time chasing love and giving all I had to other people when I needed to give all that love and attention to myself because I deserved it. 
  1. Move your body, every day- listen to your body. it doesn’t always have to be a super intense workout, go for a walk, play tennis, stretch, literally anything, just move! 
  1. Don’t chase anyone’s approval- I spent my whole life trying to get validation from others and for what?! Be your own biggest fan! 
  1. Learn to budget 
  1. You are not your mistakes 
  1. Whether you know it or not, the things that happened to you as a kid will stay with and affect you for the rest of your life. Facing your past and healing your inner child can allow joy and tranquility to flourish! Thank you Nat and Desteni for recommending the book Reconciliation by Thich Nhat Hanh. Highly recommend!
  1. Literally no one cares- do whatever the heck you want. Don’t worry about what anyone else thinks. 
  1. You don’t need to post everything…
  1. Growth isn’t linear 
  1. Do things that challenge you- step outside your comfort zone 
  1. Check up on your family and friends
  1. Check up on yourself- don’t give so much to others that you forget to give to yourself
  1. The thought of doing something isn’t enough- there were so many times where I would think “oh I should do this for so and so they would really like it” / “I should really start my homework now so I’m not waiting till the last minute” and then never do it. While the thought was sweet, nothing comes from it. Act upon your thoughts! 
  1. Sometimes you won’t get the closure you need or want and that’s okay- find that closure within yourself and make peace 
  1. It’s okay to not have it all figured out, everything will work out the way it’s supposed to 🙂
  1. Become the expert of your own happiness 
  1. You are the main character- okay but I love this. Romanticize your life, even the little things!
  1. Know your boundaries and set them  
  1. Don’t get stuck watching other people live their lives- I would spend hours on TikTok, YouTube, Instagram, etc. watching people do all these things I wanted to do when nothing was stopping from doing those things besides me
  1. There is so much more to life than worrying about counting calories or restricting or going on a crash diet. Accepting your body and recognizing all that it does for you is so FREEING

23. Do everything with love. Life is too short for hate or judgement. Be kind and love courageously.

And that’s all! If there is any advice you’d like to share with a young, hopeful, curious, 23 year old, please share in the comments. I can’t wait to see what this next year has in store for me. I know younger me would be proud. Thank you all for reading and supporting me!

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