…25 million lessons, that is. (sorry Drake, can’t relate)
I turn 26 in a day and yes, I’m one of those people who take their birthdays seriously. I mean, you were born and brought into this life, onto this planet, for a reason. I enjoy celebrating that reason, mine and others’.
Anyway, before 26, here are the 25 things I learned at 25:
1- 25 is a “quarter of a century” and it’s a big deal to you but don’t freak out or put too much pressure on yourself to achieve anything; it’ll all work out because you’re focused and driven and that’s all that matters.
2- you have less friends (it’s been a downward trend since the start of your 20s) but more friends who matter, and that’s the best thing ever.
3- you actually stop using the word ‘love’ altogether; reality hits, love isn’t easy, and that’s ok because you’d rather have a partner than a prince.
4- a work-life balance starts making more sense; more life, less work, more work that adds to life.
5- there is nothing stopping you from going after what you want except for you; get you out of the way, and go.
6- you generally don’t care about what people say about you or your work, but at 25 you REALLY don’t care.
7- writing becomes more honest and more difficult; you’re expressing more truth, with more sensitivity; it becomes scary, but it’s your form of art.
8- you never realised how important it is to use your skill (whatever it is) until now; the world needs to have what you’re good at.
9- traveling really is the point of living – even if it’s traveling around your own country.
10- food is life and life is food and it doesn’t get any better than that; keep exploring.
11- gratitude deserves a moment out of your busy day; don’t just think of what you are thankful for, actually say it out loud and understand how much it means to you (this is life changing).
12- do NOT pressure yourself to do more than what comes naturally to you; believe, instead, that you are naturally brilliant and the rest will follow.
13- be kind to yourself; the world is seriously harsh enough.
14- family comes first, before and beyond anything; even if it means putting their happiness before yours – SOMETIMES.
15- you will experience unconditional love to a little tiny creature called your nephew; it will make you grow as a woman, embrace it.
16- your sisters really are your soulmates and there is no bond stronger, and it grows stronger with age.
17- be as honest as possible about how you feel; you should never be pressured to fake it.
18- BUT, for everything else, faking it ’till you make it really works.
19- don’t be afraid to make drastic decisions and move/change your life/quit your job; you’re a champ for getting out of your comfort zone in the first place.
20- and don’t be afraid to admit that your drastic decision didn’t quite work out as you expected.
21- be the strong woman you know you are, every day, and don’t apologise for it; support the strong women in your family and your community who lead tough lives and handle more than a person should, strong is beautiful in our own way.
22- while we’re on the subject of apologies, don’t ever apologise for what you think or how you feel; don’t hurt anyone with it, or if you must, do it in the most human (not humane) way possible.
23- stand firmly with your beliefs – stand for those you believe in.
24- be an example of what you want to see more of; creativity, freedom, tolerance, acceptance, success? be it, every day.
25- don’t let anyone tell you who you are, unless you trust them; you’re still growing and figuring out who you are; no shame in that, just commit to being more you every day.
& 26, I’m ready for you.