Today I am 25 years old… A quarter of a century old. The big 2-5 is here and I am no longer in my early 20s. How did life go by so fast?! As scary as that might seem to some, I am looking forward to what this year has to bring me. I have had so many fun memories and great experiences in my 25 years here and I look forward to so many more. 25 Things I Have Learned in 25 Years
With all of the wonderful memories and experiences I have had, I have learned many lessons that I would like to share. Yes, I am doing the stereotypical blogger “[insert number here] things I have learned in [insert number here] years” post. But I think these posts are important for my younger followers and I almost see this as an “if I could tell my 16-year-old self…” type of post. I am sure (or at least hope) my older followers will also see it as an inspirational post or at least get a good laugh out of some of the lessons I have learned. Plus I took some super cute photos in my new Lilly Pulitzer romper that I had to share! With that said, here are 25 things I have learned in 25 years.
Don’t worry about the things you can’t change
For the longest time I would worry about things I couldn’t change and stress myself out so much. If you can’t change it, it is honestly not worth getting all worked up and worried over. Focus on the things you CAN change that will create a positive and better life.
Move to a new city and step out of your comfort zone
I never in my whole life expected that I would move to Canton, Ohio. But after a year of living here, I am so glad I went somewhere new and stepped out of my comfort zone. I landed a great job, met so many new friends, and experienced a bunch of things I couldn’t have done in Northwest Ohio. I am so glad I moved here to try something new!
Don’t use Pantene shampoo
I already know my mom is laughing about this one… When I was in 8th grade I used Pantene shampoo, not knowing how bad it is for your hair. You could tell how bad it was just from looking at my hair because I had so much buildup from the product. One morning before church I was straightening my bangs and the next thing I know my bangs are laying in the sink with the ends singed together… I was literally this girl! I didn’t even know how to react. Once it hit me, I cried and then wore headbands to school for the next six months while it grew back. Moral of the story: use good hair products.
If you are true friends, you don’t have to talk every day
In high school, I seriously thought a friend was mad at me if we didn’t talk every day. As I got older I started learning that you don’t have to talk every day to still be friends. Now, I don’t talk to my best friends every single day. In reality, I don’t have time for that, but if I need to talk to them I will.
Put your phone down
In today’s world, so many people are addicted to their photos and always have to be connected. Trust me, I am not perfect and I am definitely on my phone way too much. But when it comes to spending time with family or friends, I close all of my social media and put down my phone. And sometimes it is so nice to be disconnected from the world and just focus on the moment.
Being tan isn’t worth risking your health or life
I learned at a very young age that tanning is one of the worst things you can do to your health. At 19-years-old I was having moles removed from my body because they were or were almost cancerous. Seriously people, if you want to be tan use self-tanner! Being tan is not worth losing parts of your body or dying over. If you are going to be out in the sun, always use SPF 30 or higher. Another plus is you won’t have as many wrinkles when you get older.
As you get older and have different experiences, your dreams will change and that doesn’t mean you failed. Halfway through my final year of college, I had a really awful experience and I realized I wasn’t so passionate about being a Language Arts teacher. I decided not to finish student teaching. I still got my degree in education but decided not to pursue my teaching license. What I did know is that I was passionate about journalism and public relations, which lead me to the career I am in now. It’s ok to change your major in college if you aren’t truly happy. Your parents might not like it and this leads me into my next point…
Don’t let others dictate your life & don’t try to please everyone
I pretty much knew my junior year I wanted to change my major, but I knew I already had to go an extra year and didn’t want to disappoint my dad. I think my dad was pretty proud that I was becoming a teacher. As much as I love my dad, I should have been selfish in this situation and thought about what I really wanted and changed it. You can’t please everybody and trying to will make you crazy. I still definitely think you should take other people’s advice into consideration (your parents), but ultimately it is your decision. Don’t do something if it doesn’t make you happy so you can please someone else. Ultimately, my dad still loves me (duh) and he is happy to see where I am now. I didn’t disappoint him!
Don’t wear lip gloss on a windy day with your hair down
This is pretty self-explanatory. You don’t want sticky lip gloss stuck in your hair all day. I learned this the hard way in my days at Blowing Green… I mean Bowling Green.
It really is a small world
As I have gotten older, the world is seeming smaller and smaller. I seriously feel like I always meet someone that knows someone. This world is crazy small and it is unbelievable who you will meet that knows someone you already know. It’s a small world after all as they say.
Your parents get cooler the older you get
I have always been close to my parents, but I was also that typical teenager that would argue with them about everything. I honestly kind of think I was a little bit of a brat in high school when it came to talking to my parents. In reality, your parents have way more life experience than you and probably know what is best for you. Also, don’t be afraid to talk to your parents about things because they probably will understand what is going on or can help you in some way. I was and still am so lucky to have amazing parents, and I enjoy going home and hanging out with them.
You don’t have to get married right out of college
If you asked me 10 years ago, “where do you see yourself in 10 years?” I probably would have said “engaged or married.” LOL… Now that I am 25, I am thankful I am not married out of college. Not that I don’t love Corey, but just don’t feel I am not ready to get married yet. We have a lot of fun where we are at. BUT it is also ok to get married if that’s what you chose to do. All I am saying is don’t feel pressured to marry someone just because you are in your twenties. Timelines are BS.
Don’t make assumptions and give everything a chance
Really. Don’t assume things. Don’t assume you don’t like something if you have never tried it. You aren’t five anymore so if you haven’t tried baked beans or fried pickles, give them a chance and just try them once! As a freshman in college, I never would have expected to go Greek. I assumed I knew what Greek life was because I watched all of the dumb movies like House Bunny and Animal House. Turns out, I had no idea what it was really about and I am so glad I gave it a chance.
Also, don’t be afraid to give some things a second chance too. Fun fact: I actually did not like baked beans when I was little and now I love them. I tried them again when I was older and they tasted way better than I remembered.
The grass isn’t always greener on the other side
Don’t waste your time wishing for things you don’t have and comparing yourself to others. We think that other people’s lives are better or perfect, but that isn’t always true. Live your life and be happy with who you are and who God created you to be.
You aren’t going to be best friends with everyone
We all want to be liked by others. Let’s be realistic; there are people in this world that don’t like you for no reason at all (or they just don’t care to be friends with you). It seems pretty silly and you can be as sweet as pie to them, but they still don’t like you. And that is ok! When I first joined my sorority I was excited to have 80 girls as my sisters and friends. There were girls that didn’t like or care for me for whatever reason and I took it personally. Eventually, I learned that it doesn’t really matter and I had the friends I needed. If they didn’t like me or didn’t want to be friends with me, it was their loss.
Look at every little detail when renting or buying an apartment/house/condo/whatever
Going into my senior year, I was so excited to be living with my sorority sisters in this perfect little blue house not too far from campus. Only it wasn’t perfect… It was actually a shit hole. That house should be condemned. The foundation was crooked, there were critters (which we would find out shortly after moving in), the plumbing backed up, the pipes froze, etc. Obviously, this is all things we wouldn’t have noticed just by looking at the house, but we should have asked questions. I should have been more observant when we went to go look at the place, but I was so fricken excited to live in a cute house off campus that I overlooked the unseen details. Check your future home thoroughly and ask questions before signing anything!
Traveling and experiences are more valuable than things
As you get older, that Michael Kors bag won’t be as important to you and your experiences will be. Now that I am older, I would rather spend my money on traveling and experiences to make memories with the people I love. I most recently went to New Orleans (read my travel guide) and it was one of the most fun experiences I have ever had. Save your money and skip the new bag.
Everything happens for a reason
Ok, this sounds super cliche, but I am a strong believer that everything happens for a reason. When things don’t go your way, remember that everything will work out the way it is supposed to work out.
Long distance relationships are possible and it makes you appreciate the little things
As y’all might know, my boyfriend and I have been in a long distance relationship for two years (until recently… more to come on that soon!). He graduated before me and moved back home and when I graduated I moved two hours East. We both wanted to build our careers and were ok with the separation while we got established. Being long distance is hard work, but it is possible and it makes you appreciate the littlest things in your relationship.
It’s ok to not have plans
I am probably one of the busiest girls you will ever meet. I thrive off of staying busy and being involved. But sometimes it is ok to just sit back and not do anything at all! When I first graduated, I really had a hard time adjusting to not being busy with school work, skating practice, sorority events, parties and everything else. I was so used to being a busy bee that I never took time to just sit and relax. Set some time aside to just do nothing.
Keep wearing your retainers no matter how bad they hurt
Retainers are annoying AF, but they will keep your teeth straight. I regret not continuing to wear mine because now my teeth are shifting. Yeah, I could get braces again or get Invisalign, but who really wants braces as an adult or to spend money on that stuff. Dental is expensive, so just keep up with your retainers.
Empowered women empower women
I have always been a girls girl and have valued my friendships. I never really understood why some girls were so catty and tear each other down. As I have gotten older, I have really embraced this motto. Something my sorority really focused on was empowering other women and promoting confidence. As you get older, you should realize that girls are like a team, and we need to stick together and build each other up.
Learn to deal with conflict
I used to hate conflict and try to avoid it at all costs. But the older I have gotten I have learned you can’t avoid it. You will literally deal with conflict your entire life, whether it is a roommate or co-worker, so just learn how to deal with it. I actually took a communication and conflict class in college and it really helped me learn how to deal with it. That class was definitely tuition money well spent because it taught me valuable life lessons about conflict.
Nobody cares if you can’t dance well
I got my best dance moves from drunken nights at college bars. Translation: I am the worst dancer ever, but I don’t really care because I have fun and that’s what matters! This one goes out to you, Corey 😉
Always be kind to others
No matter how crappy your day has been, you should always be genuinely kind, thankful and respectful to others. Taking your feelings out on someone else isn’t going to change the fact that you had a crappy day and fix anything that has gone wrong. You don’t know what that other person’s day has been like and you wouldn’t want some else to act rude or disrespectful toward you.
I hope y’all enjoyed my 25 Things I Have Learned in 25 Years and hope you have something to take away from it. Feel free to comment below any other valuable life lessons you want to share! I love reading your comments and would love to know what you think!
Shop this post:
I think this Lilly Pulitzer romper is one of my favorite Lilly pieces I have ever owned and I was extremely excited to recieve it for my birthday! And to make it even better, it is a print with a purpose in support of the sea turtle hospital at Loggerhead Marinelife Center. To learn more about Lilly’s prints with purpose, click here. I couldn’t find my exact necklace, so I linked some similar ones below.