I’ve only been alive on this planet for eighteen years but I finally feel like I have reached an age where I can look back on my mistakes and understand how they built me up as a person. I wanted to write about the realisations I’ve had whilst growing up, I have so much more to learn but these eighteen things have embedded themselves in my mind as I’ve grown up to be the woman that I am today.
1. Exercise is not the enemy, it is in fact my best friend. The feeling I get when I’ve just done a killer workout at the gym can compare to no other, in fact it is scientifically proven that exercise releases “endorphins” a chemical that makes you happy. If I start my day with exercise I am guaranteed to have a productive day.
2. Books keep you sane, not only do I learn so much about writing from books, they also take me to my zen place. When life gets on top of me, reading a book and escaping to another persons life and a completely different world makes me feel calm and content.
3. Plan, schedule, organise but throw a little spontaneity in there from time to time. I have a little paperchase diary and at the beginning of every week and write absolutely everything that is happening inside it, my mind knows the exact timings of everything and that way I can fill up each day with as much as possible and be productive. However I find it is also important to have a little surprise and do things on impulse in order to keep life exciting.
4. Let go of toxic friends, sometimes it is hard to identify toxic friends but when you do it’s so important to let them go. If someone isn’t supportive, constantly puts you down, is untrustworthy or only ever there for you if they need something, then they are a negative influence on your life. I read a magnificent blog post about this topic on AnastasiaAmour and she writes “The best thing to do is to walk away with more time and energy to spend with those who are a positive impact on your life.”
5. Girl power is alive, feminism is on the rise. We live in a world where women can be strong, independent, powerful and successful. We need to take what women have already achieved and make it bigger and better; times have changed and we aren’t made for sitting at home doing the cooking and cleaning anymore. Women need to stick together, support each other and show the world what we are made of.
6. Have dreams, have ambition and take every opportunity, if you know what you want to do then make plans on how to achieve that and don’t stop at anything in order to make it happen. I am young, I have my whole life ahead of me and I am going to work damn hard in order to achieve my dreams. I believe the most important aspect of achieving your goals is by being persistent and never taking no for an answer, and especially never giving up.
7. Success is the best revenge, we all have those people in our lives that constantly put us down and don’t believe in us. Let go of those people, move on, make something of yourself and prove them wrong. As Taylor Swift sings “someday I’ll be living in a big old city and all you’re every going to be is mean.”
8. FOMO lasts approximately 24 hours, and that is it. Usually known as Fear Of Missing Out, FOMO is something a lot of people identify with; it’s the fear that if they don’t go to every single event or party they will be missing out on something massive. Realistically you’re not. When you’re not there you might feel a bit FOMO, when you look at the pictures online you’ll feel it again but after that you’ll have forgotten about it because at the end of the day missing one social event isn’t the end of the world.
9. Writing is therapy, it helps me stay grounded and lets me get everything out onto paper. Whether it’s writing a blog post, which takes my mind off anything stressing me out, or writing in my journal which lets me rant and vent, or writing in my “story” notebook where I can delve into a made up characters life. Writing keeps me well balanced and keeps my imagination alive.
10. ‘Me’ time is incredibly important, I love being busy and I love being surrounded by people but every so often it’s so important to have time to myself. Whether it’s going to the gym, having a bath, going for a drive, reading or writing. I can’t stress the importance of having time to clear my head and just relax, I’ve learnt how much of an impact this has on my life and I’ll always make sure I make time for myself.
11. Travel, anywhere and everywhere. I am lucky enough to go on incredible holidays, I am very well travelled for my age and I am very grateful for that. I have seen so many different places and experienced many cultures, I love seeing how different countries live their lives. Travelling is good for the soul and for your perception of the world.
12. Appreciate the ones you love and be selfless, invest time in your family and close friends. If you have supportive and loving friends hold on tight to them and never let them go, however busy you are make time for them because nothing is worth more than a solid friendship.
13. Your mum will always be your number one fan, no matter what happens in life and whatever mistakes you make at the end of the day you will always have your mum. We argue from time to time but I wouldn’t be the person I am today without her, she is my support system and I know she will be there no matter what.
14. Change is good and healthy, it’s sad when things come to an end but life is a book made up from many chapters. I find it really hard to move on from something and start fresh but life would be pretty boring if it was all the same so sometimes you just have to accept it, move on and grasp hold of the new exciting adventures that await.
15. Disconnect, I am the worst for always checking my phone, scrolling through my instagram and twitter feed and feeling like I have to constantly know what everybody else is doing. It’s very healthy for your mind to turn off your phone and disconnect. I tend to mainly do this at the gym as I am able to have some time with just my thoughts without my eyes peeled to a screen.
16. You don’t have to drink to have fun, when I was younger I always used to think that the aim of a night out was to get absolutely steaming drunk and if that didn’t happen I wasn’t going to have a good time. I’ve learnt that I can have a lot more fun just having a few drinks or even without having any.
17. Never feel guilty for enjoying food, I used to be one of those girls that counted calories and felt awful if I ate anything calorific. Until I realised life is too short and there is too much amazing food out there to try, especially when I’m abroad. I know I am healthy, I workout at least three times a week and I refuse to feel guilty for that.
18. Jealousy is an ugly trait, everybody compares themselves to others and wishes they had what everyone else has but jealousy gets you nowhere, all it does is make you miserable. I read a really inspiring blog post by Emma Gannon on her blog called Comparison which really spoke to me and if I’m ever feeling envious or down then I remind myself of Alexander Mcqueen’s quote “I never look at other people’s work. My mind has to be focused on my own illusions.”