21 things I’ve learned in 21 Years

My 21st birthday occurred earlier this month. It’s funny because a lot has changed since last year. Tears, renewed friendships, faded friendships, different fears, new discoveries etc. Last year, on my birthday, I found out that my dog, age 11, was most likely going to pass. She had gotten sick at the beginning of March and quickly went downhill as a series of unfortunate circumstances occurred. Despite multiple attempts to help her recover, she passed on April 16th; since then, nothing has really been the same. While this may seem irrelevant to my present moment, it had a lot of impact on how I spent my entire year, from my 20th birthday up until now. I became terrified of loss and it impacted a lot of the decisions that I made from that point on. While I digress that life is a series of moments from the day you are born, I am certain that this moment was a pivotal point in my life. This moment solidified and altered how I viewed everything that came before and after. I realized who was really there for me and I realized that, at any moment, change is inevitable. Most of all, I reflected more than usual. As a result, I learned more about myself and what kind of person I wanted to be. Today, I decided to make a list of 21 major lessons that I have discovered throughout my short time on Earth.

  1. not everyone has the same heart as you
    1. This is super cliche but extremely true. I am still coming to terms with the fact that reciprocation comes differently than expected. If you’re there for someone during difficult times, it doesn’t mean they will be there for you. At the end of the day, your choices reflect who you are as a person. Quite frankly, MY actions have nothing to do with the other person and everything to do with ME.
  2. it’s okay to let go of people you thought would be in your life forever 
    1. This is a strange concept for me. I hold on to people regardless of their impact on me. I give multiple chances until I have drained all of my energy but I have come to realize that spacing myself from toxic relationships can be mutually beneficial. If they leave, I am letting them walk. Sometimes they are unable to give me what I need.
  3. take time to rest 
    1. I still struggle with one….hence the anxiety that I have as I am writing now when I told myself I would rest…but I have gotten better at pacing myself in a way that isn’t self-deprecating.
  4. There’s no time table; everything will happen when it is supposed to
    1. I am pressured to graduate in a timely manner and I feel like I have been running to meet some imaginary time table that states. I probably won’t let myself slow down too much but I am taking baby steps.
  5. don’t beat yourself up for caring too much
    1. I FEEL THIS ON A SPIRITUAL LEVEL…like I said, I give until I can’t anymore and, sometimes, that makes me feel guilty. I hate that people can take advantage of this but I am okay with it because I have learned to…
  6. always be the better person 
    1. ALWAYS. I want to leave people better than I found them. Whether that means spreading a kind word, giving them a shoulder to cry on, or giving them space, I try to make choices that will help other people become their best selves. At the same time, I can’t pour from an empty cup so I am coming to terms with the fact that I need to…
  7. respect my boundaries
    1. if I am tired, I need to sleep; if I am overwhelmed, I need to say no to plans; if I am taking too many classes, I need to drop one. At the same time, if others are taking advantage of me I need to respect myself so that others will respect me, as well.
  8. Look within 
    1. Taking time for self-care means taking time to do what my soul needs in order to thrive.
  9. don’t be surprised if your plans change
    1. This is a huge lesson. I have a type A personality. When puzzle pieces connect differently than I expect, I do my best to adapt accordingly.
  10. do something every day that makes your soul happy 
    1. A car ride, a bubble bath, baking…anything to ease the burdens of any stressors that weigh you down!
  11. social media isn’t who you are, its just a highlight reel 
    1. I’ve always known this, but it hadn’t been solidified until recently. I stayed off Instagram for a few weeks and really centered my focus on what was going on around me. It helped me put a lot of things into perspective.
  12. not everyone’s as put together as they seem 
    1. I put a lot of pressure on myself to reach certain standards but I try not to beat myself up if I don’t get exactly where I want to be.
  13. Where God guides, He provides
    1. This speaks for itself; if he takes you to it, He will get you through it 🙂
  14. Let it go 
    1. all of it…just expect that the things meant for you will be there. That doesn’t mean you don’t have to work for it, it just means you don’t have to get bent out of shape if that one thing you really wanted ends up slowly fading away.
  15. Sometimes it’s best to disconnect
    1. Social media, reality, whatever it is, zone out for a bit.
  16. Sometimes your isolation is needed for your elevation 
    1. I have felt very isolated throughout my life but I am certain that is why I am more comfortable being alone. I have accepted that things will happen when they’re supposed to.
  17. God’s plan > mine
    1. Reroutes may be the best thing for you!
  18. Solitude is better than the presence of someone who is only 1/2 invested in your friendship  
    1. If you have to force it or fake it, leave it.
  19. Don’t force things 
    1. You can try for something all you want, but if it’s not meant for you, it won’t happen.
  20. Embrace the moment
    1.  Listen to the waves crash, watch the birds fly, smell the salty air…feel alive 
  21. Most importantly, focus on your mental health
    1. “you can only meet others as deeply as you’ve met yourself”

~ I plan on taking this year to dive deeper into who I am and to truly solidify these lessons and I hope they resonated with your soul ~

God bless!



19 responses to “21 things I’ve learned in 21 Years”

  1. My thoughts exactly Avatar
    My thoughts exactly

    I wish someone would have taken the time to tell me all of this when I was 21! You are going to be just fine.

  2. crystalsandcurls Avatar

    What a lovely post! Really enjoyed reading this and you’ve got some fantastic lessons in here. Respecting your own boundaries is such a good one x

  3. T. R. Noble Avatar

    Yes! Boundaries, it’s okay to say no. Knowing that friendships may fade. Or, I learned when I got into blogging, not all friendships will be the same because people are not the same. Some connect with others better. Some think a friendship will happen, and it doesn’t. It’s okay and normal. I’m very sensitive and take things too personally sometimes. 🙂 Happy belated birthday!

    1. growingthroughsomething Avatar

      Ditto! You expanded on my thoughts perfectly~I am glad I have found you as a friend. Blessings!

      1. T. R. Noble Avatar


  4. Loved by the King of kings Avatar

    My favorites are 6,10, and 16.
    I’ve thought of leaving places cleaner than when I got there, but I had never transferred that idea to people, “to leave people better than I found them.” Great concept!

  5. T. R. Noble Avatar

    I’ve nominated you for the Blogger Recognition Award! Congrats 🙂


  6. The Eclectic Contrarian Avatar
    The Eclectic Contrarian

    I’m one who tries to help people. I care a bit much. So when people act uninterested or they don’t care, I get aggravated…. so I guess I understand you.

    1. growingthroughsomething Avatar

      I think it comes down to learning different love languages and understanding different emotional and mental capacities. It’s normal to be hurt when you feel as if there is a limited level of reciprocation. I hope this makes sense and helps you in some way. 🙂

      1. The Eclectic Contrarian Avatar
        The Eclectic Contrarian

        I definitely understand the love language… but I think it more or less comes down to me. I either really connect with someone or I just completely don’t…

      2. growingthroughsomething Avatar

        oh, yeah. I definitely understand that!

      3. The Eclectic Contrarian Avatar
        The Eclectic Contrarian

        In a way that’s awesome to hear and I feel for you at the same time!

      4. The Eclectic Contrarian Avatar
        The Eclectic Contrarian

        I’m John by the way!

      5. growingthroughsomething Avatar

        Yes, it can be comforting to know that others resonate with your emotions but also upsetting. I’m Kiki. Nice chatting with you. I look forward to reading your blogs!

      6. The Eclectic Contrarian Avatar
        The Eclectic Contrarian

        Nice to meet you Kiki! Thank you for following! I really appreciate that 🙂

  7. Tina Avatar

    I can relate to so many of the things you have said here. I’m a giver too. It’s hard when that giving isn’t reciprocated the same. Not necessarily because you give to get, but because you give because you care, so when there isn’t any reciprocation you feel as if they care less than you do. In the end you have to give not expecting anthing in return, but it sure is nice when it comes back to you. ☺ I like the way you process your thoughts.

    1. growingthroughsomething Avatar

      I couldn’t have explained it better myself! In fact, I am learning about this right now in one of my psychology classes! On top of this, my birthday is around the corner. What perfect timing to look back on this blog and see progression or areas I in which I can continue to grow! Blessings!

      1. Tina Avatar

        Blessings back at ya! Enjoy your Birthday!

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: