As my 21st birthday approaches I recently started to reflect on how far I've come and what I've already achieved. This is when I thought that I would write a post that shares some 'life lessons' I have learnt for each year.

  1. Accepting yourself for who you are, quirks and all, can sometimes take time, but that's okay. We are all complicated and unique individuals, living in a world that still (uh!) discriminates against little things (hair colour), as well as 'big things' (race, gender, sexuality etc) all of which cannot be changed. Therefore the amount of information we are consuming can sometimes make us feel as though we are imperfect and we shouldn't do this or be like that. NEWSFLASH: we are all imperfect, but that's what make you, you. Don't allow anyone to make you feel worthless because of things you cannot change. Turn round and run in the other direction. Just be YOU. It would be incredibly boring if we were all the same.
  2. Jealousy is both a good and bad trait. It can be good in making  yourself strive to do better or work hard or even realising that you like someone or something. But it can also be a nasty trait, whereby it makes people purposively be hateful to others or be jealous of others achievements and try to belittle them. I have learnt to stay away from these types of people as they only bring you down.
  3. To stop worrying about what other people think of you. You only have a short amount of time in this world, just do you, and stop fretting over other people's comments about your life choices.
  4. Do things that you enjoy, even if it's not the thing you're best at. You will hate doing something you really dislike and then you'll hate yourself for putting yourself through it. Life satisfaction is more important that anything else.
  5. Stop comparing yourself to other people. You are perfect in your very own way.
  6. Being around people is lovely, but sometimes there is nothing like your own company.
  7. Coffee is life. That is all.
  8. That I will forever have a love hate relationship with alcohol, especially vodka. I love it while drinking it (sort of) but hate it, and myself the next morning.
  9. Having a smaller amount of friends that are close and you can rely on for anything is better than having a lot of friends who all flake out on you when you are in need. Make meaningful friendships and relationships that spend equal amounts of effort on each other. You will realise that if you give and others just take and take from you this is not a healthy relationship. Those who don't make the effort with you, are unfortunatley not the types of people I spend my time around anymore.
  10. Failing is almost inevitable at one point in your life, not everything in life is going to go your way all the time. This is when you learn the most about yourself (and others around you) and you almost everytime come back stronger than before. This is how I learnt to perservere and not let my determination or motivation drop.
  11. Surround yourself with positive people, these types of people are very much like radiators, they warm you up and support you and want you to succeed. Likewise, stay away from people who are always negative and suck away any hope of anything remotely postive. These types of people are like drains and should be avoided or held at arms length with extreme caution. You are in control of your own happiness, have enough self respect for yourself to say no, this is not what I want or who I want to be around. 
  12. Make time for relaxing in your PJ's and doing fun stuff instead of being caught up being a boring workaholic.
  13. Cwtching (or cuddling for anyone who isn't familiar with the welsh phrase) is quite possibly one of the most amazing feelings. Sharing such an intimate moment with someone can make you feel so complete.
  14. It's okay to cry for no reason at all. Sometimes you just need to let all the emotion out to help you feel better.
  15. Grief is hard and comes in many forms and is different for everyone. Don't criticise others because they are not showing grief how you want them to feel it or how you expect them to show it.
  16. Cherish your family and friends. You never know what's around the corner. Try your best not to argue over petty stupid things that don't matter in the bigger picture. After experiencing the heartbreak of watching family members who I adored experience illhealth. I found that it was important to try and stay positive for this person no matter how much it hurts you. Cherish all the time you have together. Make memories that will last a lifetime.Your family, or friends for that matter, can provide you with such a strong support network, that you will never feel alone. Make these people know you love them for this and that you appreciate them.
  17. Go outside of your comfort zone every once in a while. Yes, I am aware this is cliché and unoriginal but it is so true! Doing something you would normally may just mean you learn or discover something new! And, I know this sounds scary, trust me, I'm the queen of routine and being organised but it is worth it, sometimes! 
  18. Time doesn't heal the pain, it just makes it somehow easier to cope with.
  19. Nothing worth having in life comes easy. Work hard and you will be able to reap the rewards. Not only is this rewarding but it is extremely satisfying achieving something that you want and have worked so hard for.
  20. Just because you don't like something doesn't mean others don't too. Accepting others for who they are and what they like without discrimination is one of the most appealing characteristics anyone can have. I think we should all aim to be a little more understanding and accepting. 
  21. Growing up is exciting but equally scary as hell. There are times you have no idea how to 'adult' but slowly you start to learn how to do stuff and before you know it you're flying into your 20's!

Obviously I have learnt more than this is my 21 years and could add more to this list but these are a mixture of some serious and fun life lessons that I have found most influential. Please comment below one of your life lessons, I'd love to hear some of yours! :)

Published by Jodie Luker