Another year older, another list of lessons I’ve learnt in the 28 years I’ve now been present on this planet we call Earth. This is the third one of these lists I’ve done on the blog (see 26 and 27) …have I really been blogging for three years? Wow.
1) Find a way to deal with stress healthily. Maybe it comes from getting older but stress is something that’s becoming more and more prevalent in my life. And I don’t like it. It’s time to find a way to deal with this healthily - exercise, reading, walking, meditation.
2) Be open to change in yourself and others. We’re changing constantly, who we are, what we wear. I used to be terrified of change, but now it excites me, it opens new doors and creates exciting opportunities, with being open to change in mind…
3) People grow apart and that’s ok. Your friends yesterday might not be your friends this time next week and sometimes, that really isn’t anyone's fault. We grow up, we go down different paths and we simply drift apart. It’s not a bad thing - you’ll find people on your own path.
4) Be part of a community online or offline. One of the best things I have discovered about blogging is the amazing community I have found myself in. I have met some amazing people thanks to this blog. So start a blog, join a team, get a hobby and get involved with like-minded enthusiasts.
5) Get you head around your financial situation sooner rather than later. Be it debt, credit scores, savings, budgeting, be onto of what you're bringing in each month and realistic about how many new mascaras your can buy this month. The sooner you start saving the easier it is to live within a budget, and the sooner you start saving the more pennies you’ll have to play with in the long run.
6) There isn’t enough time in the day so accept this and do the rest tomorrow! Since moving out I have really struggled with my time management, between work, blogging, family, cleaning, cooking, and general me time, I could do with splitting myself in two and that's before I start a family! There’s no point stressing about the things you didn’t tick off your to-do list today. Get the important things done first, everything else can wait.
7) Quality over quantity in everything you do. From your day job to how many cakes you bake over the weekend. I would rather do 10 quality, perfect form squats than a 100 badly formed one just because. I would rather have a killer pair of jeans that cost me £200 that will last until I’m too old to wear skinnies than go through 20 pairs of £10 because the knees stretch out after one wear. Get me?
8) It’s not about my way or the highway and just because someone might approach something different to me does not mean their way is better than mine. However, that doesn’t mean I can’t learn from them and adapt they way of doing things to suit how I like to do something.
9) Planning doesn’t mean you can’t be spontaneous, sometimes something better comes along that goes against the plan but if you find yourself drawn towards it then be spontaneous and go for it, the plan will always be there to fall back on.
10) Give people a chance they might not be as bad as you initially thought. But if they are…
11) Don’t be afraid to walk away from toxic relationships, some people are just bad for your health and you don’t need them in your life. Letting go isn’t always easy but in the long run we’re better off surrounding ourselves with people who make things fun and easy, not hard.
12) Coming home from a holiday without a tan is not a bad thing. I tried to get a tan on my last holiday, but it wasn’t for me, it was for everyone else I was coming home to, a badge of tan-our. I burnt on the second day and hid indoors for the rest of the trip. I went for fun and relaxation not to become a piece of toast.
13) Speak more highly of yourself it’s too easier to put yourself down and nobody likes being around the person who needs constant coddling and bigging up. Give yourself some credit, you’re pretty awesome and you know it. It’s not big headedness - it’s fact. If your a good listener say that, instead of saying you’re not just so other people tell you that you are and groom your ego.
14) A job CAN be just a job it doesn’t have to be your calling or your purpose, sometimes a job can literally be just something that lines your pockets and funds the things you’re really passionate about. Why is this a bad thing? My day job is ok, it pays well and I generally work with some lovely people that make those 40+ hours a week a pinch easier. It means I can blog, go on holiday, spoil family and friends and buy gin.
15) Binge drinking is never a good idea the next day. Maybe I am getting old but I just don’t see the point in binge drinking until I puke, can’t remember a thing and can’t function for two days afterwards. I would rather go out and have a couple of really nice drinks in nice places with nice people than just throw a bottle of wine down my neck even if it tastes like cat piss. With this in mind…
16) Know your limits when it comes to drinking. Urgh, I sound like a right old lady now but seriously, if beer gives you heart burn or red wines goes straight to your head and makes you cry why do you drink it? There're so many drinks out there to try, there is going to be a tipple of choice for everyone!
17) Dance if the mood takes you! Don’t sit miserable in the corner thinking about it but being too worried about what people might think. Get up on that dance floor and bust a move.
18) Go outside more even if it’s getting chillier out. It’s amazing what a good walk can do for you. I love going for a quick 15 minute walk on my lunch break. it clears my head, especially when work is kicking my ass and it breaks up my day. It’s also great for the waistline.
19) Sometimes you just need to change your attitude to the situation to make things better. I.e me thinking my job is absolute balls - I accept that it is balls, but if I look for the good in it, the things I enjoy about it, it seems less bally.
20) But if you're really, truly unhappy then it’s time to change your situation. There’s only so far an attitude adjustment can take you and if that doesn’t improve things, then it’s time to move on to new pastures and get a fresh start. This doesn’t mean you’ve failed, it means you’ve been smart enough and brave enough to do what had to done.
21) Don’t be a self-help junkie. I used to read a lot of self help, productive living blogs and articles without really taking any of it in. Sure, it all sounded like a good idea, but what’s the point in thinking it’s good advice without acting upon it and finding out for yourself?
22) Don’t shy away from the tough conversations. Just because talking to someone about something might seem hard and scary, maybe it will even hurt them, you can’t shy away from it and bottle it up. When you don’t have these conversations so many important things never get said and you could find yourself in a situation that could have been avoided just from having a conversation.
23) Stop trying to change who you are and just be you. I spent years trying to be something I wasn’t and when I finally stopped trying to be that other person and just be myself it was so freeing. Some people liked the new me, some didn’t. Don’t let others hold you back and stop trying to be someone for other people. Be you for you.
24) Simplify your life. Clean out the clutter, have a Facebook cull, work closer to home. Simplify the things you have control over, this in turn gives you more energy and power to deal with the things you can’t control.
25) Be kind to others not because they are nice and deserve it, but because you are a nice person.
26) You don’t need to apologise for everything somethings are out of your control and that doesn’t make it your fault. I am the worst in the world for this - if it rains when I’m out with the Mr and he gets soaked, I apologise because it was my idea to go out. I cannot control the weather. he is wet, not dead, and it’s certainly not my fault.
27) It’s not about failure it’s about learning from your mistakes. I’m too quick to say I’ve failed at something when really, I should be looking at it as a learning exercise. If something goes wrong, find out why, learn from it and move on.
28) Social media is not the be all and end all. I took a social media detox and it was amazing. The world kept turning, my blog didn’t fall into the dusty corners of the internet and I had a much-needed break from having to update faceless numbers with what I was currently eating. It’s fun to share, but take a break every once in a while!
Reading this post back it makes me sound really old and wise - I’m certainly not the latter that’s for sure but I am getting older. Thoughts, feelings and attitudes change with every extra candle on the cake and each year brings more adventures, excitement and lessons to learn. I can’t wait to see what I write on the list next year!
Until next time,