This post transcribes a collection of lessons I’ve learned in my (now) 26 years of living. I’m 26 years young, and only slightly more wise than the 18-year old me. I am still just scraping the surface of life experiences as I continue on this journey of what life is going to throw at me.
In the grand scheme of things, the older that I get, the more I come to realize how much I really don’t know. But do any of us really actually know anything? We’re all here to experience and pass on our life advice as we carry on with our day-to-day lives.
So here’s to hopefully many more years of learning, feeling, failing, succeeding, loving, crying, and everything else that comes with our experience of living and being.
25 Quarter-Century Life Lessons
1. Get Out Of Your Comfort Zone// Don’t fear failure so much that you refuse to try new things. The saddest summary of a life contains three descriptions: could have, might have, and should have.
2. Self-Discovery// We are constantly surrounded by noise, whether it’s people, music, tv, that we are always influenced by others. Listening to the noise of the world, instead of ourselves. My suggestion is to start by finding what your version of ‘meditation’ is. It could be running, surfing, swimming, yoga, or simply being still. And let that be your entry point for self-discovery.
3. Acceptance // Accept it all. This includes the joyful and the unwelcome thoughts and feelings that arise — It’s a part of being human. Trust me. Accept it all, and you’ll see how it begins to make everything seem much more tolerable.
4. Suffering // We are all suffering. And, will always be suffering as it is apart of being. Sometimes the suffering comes in waves, some bigger than others. But remember, suffering creates resilience and builds to your human character. The scars you carry from the challenges you’ve faced create the story that you carry to the world. There would be no depth to us as a human being, no humility, no compassion if we had not faced the suffering that we did.
Be grateful in spite of your suffering.
Scars on your body show that you have lived; scars on your heart show that you have loved.
5. Solidarity // Don’t confuse being alone for loneliness. Learn to embrace the comfort of your own presence. Be alone. Eat alone, take yourself on dates, sleep alone. In the midst of this, you will learn about yourself. You will grow, you will learn what inspires you. You will cultivate your own dreams, your own beliefs, your own stunning clarity. When you’re always with others, you’re just a product of the other people in your life. And the truth of the matter is, sometimes being surrounded by the wrong people is the loneliest thing in the world. Learn to love yourself.
6. Trusting Your Process // Steve Jobs says it best, “You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backward. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something — your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.” — Steve Jobs
7. Strength // Strength does not only constitute the physical attribute or aspect of your body dynamics. But, the courage to endure, overcome and succeed in any challenge or hurdle that comes your way. It’s like that old saying that goes, “What does not kill you makes you stronger’.
8. The Gut // Trust it. It’s your second brain. If the situation makes your body feel weird, anxious, and glitchy, then take a moment to re-access the situation. Remember, your mind is not always your best friend. Feel more. Tune in more.
9. Failure // Failure, and mistakes are your best teacher. Your biggest mistake might be the best mistake that will lead you in the right life direction.
10. Talk Less, Listen to More // And this means actually listening. To be fully present with whom you are speaking and listening. The majority of the time, we are physically there, but our mind is elsewhere.
11. Traveling// The best education you will ever receive is traveling. Nothing teaches you more than exploring the world and accumulating experiences.
12. Self-Growth // As you grow spiritually, you will realize you are not the same person that you used to be. You might not find interest in old topics of conversations that you once used to laugh around with friends. What you once found as tolerable, might not be tolerated anymore. Old relationships drift apart, as new relationships blossom. Don’t be discouraged of change. You are becoming closer to the whole inner being that you are.
13. Relationships // Be thankful for every heartbreak, for they were planned. They come into your life just to reveal another layer of yourself to you and then leave. Their purpose is to shake you up, tear apart your ego a little bit, show you your obstacles and addictions, break your heart open so new light can get in, make you so desperate and out of control that you have to transform your life. And you do.
14. Friendships // You become what you surround yourself with. Energies are contagious. Surround yourself with friends that help you become the better version of you. Those who add to your life, rather than subtract.
15.Valuing Your Time // Time is precious. Don’t feel bad to say no if it’s coming out of a place of feeling that you ‘need to’, or ‘owe it’ to someone. Find the courage to say no when needed to.
16. Anxiety // Breath. Anxiety happens when you think you have to figure out everything all at once. Remember that you don’t, and life will continue to go on just the way it was. Just take it day by day.
17. Owning Your Doubts // We all have doubts. Don’t let that influence the way that you are living. Instead, own your doubts and grow from it. Make them apart of your journey than your insecurity.
18. Self Care // Fall in love with taking care of yourself, being with yourself, and learning about yourself. Fall in love with being the best version of yourself. Sometimes life sucks and emotions get the best of us. Be patient. Fall in love with the deep path of healing and self-discovery.
19. Happiness // Your relationship with happiness comes from within. You don’t need much, other than your basic needs covered to be wealthy in happiness. Know that the truly rich are those who enjoy what they have.
20. Gratitude // If you don’t appreciate what you already have, you’ll never be happy with what you get. Appreciate that every single day on this planet is a gift.
20. Self-Development // The biggest investment you can make it on yourself. Invest in becoming a better version of yourself physically, intellectually, culturally, mindfully, yadda yadda yadda. Go out to travel, read books, pick up an online course. Thrive for self-development.
21. Concept Of ‘Busy’ // Being busy is a ‘state of mind’. The truth is, you will always make time for what is a priority to you. We should all stop coining the term ‘busy’ as an excuse to people, and simply be honest with your answer.
22. Don’t Take Everyone’s Advice Too Seriously// Everyone is going to have their two-cents on how you should be living your life. Take everyone’s advice with a grain of salt. Remember, nobody knows how to live the life you want.
23. Aligning > Husting // Destroy the idea that you have to be constantly working hard or ‘grinding it out’ in order to be successful. Embrace the concept that rest, recovery, and reflection are essential parts of the progress towards a successful and ultimately happy life.
24. Taking Time To Reflect When Emotions Rise// Learning to take a step back and assess emotions when rising. It’s important to have communication but it can be beneficial to take a break to allow you and the person you’re talking to time to collect thoughts and reassess the situation calmly. Emotions are healthy to have but conversations purely fueled by emotion without anything constructive tend to just leave people hurt rather than resolve any issues.
25. Don’t Take Anything Personally // Lastly, don’t take anything personally. Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality.
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