To the young adults,

Twenty Things I learned in Twenty Years

  1. Getting frustrated with your parents is normal… the same way apologizing is.
  2. It is okay to be afraid of love and to guard your heart from being hurt, but sometimes peeking out from underneath the curtains will show you that there is beauty hidden in the dark shadows. Shed some light on what could be.
  3. Love whomever is around to be loved.
  4. You can be grumpy some days and you don’t owe anyone an explanation – especially those that wont take the time to understand.
  5. Sometimes a goodbye serves as an unintentional good riddance.
  6. Those things that caused you pain months or years ago can still come out of nowhere. Do not let them hold you down. There is a reason behind your suffering and sadly sometimes it’s just to learn from it.
  7. You are not hopeless.
  8. Find people that won’t let you push them away no matter how hard you try; they will be your saviors.
  9. Being strong and independent may seem like criteria for being an adult, but the true test is admitting when you need help.
  10. Doing things that are good for your physical and mental health are not phases. Keep exercising. Keep eating healthy. Not diets, but small or large changes in lifestyle.
  11. No matter how knowledgeable you get on a topic there is always more to learn. Be open to others perspectives, grow from them, and never lose that curiosity.
  12. It is okay when something gets too much or too hard for you to handle. Sometimes you do need to take a step back or let go. If you get labeled as a bad friend, because of this, never lose who you are and understand that sometimes self-care is seen as self-centered and that is okay.
  13. Listen to yourself. Listen to your body. There are signs all around you from parents, friends, therapists, teachers, loved ones, and the universe about what choices you should make, but ultimately you know what’s right for you.
  14. Never apologize for loving something or someone. Love can mend and comfort. So blast that song and dance to it, because you love it. And don’t forget to tell that person you love them even when they are making you really mad.
  15. You are not alone. Never be afraid to ask for help even if it means admitting you are not as strong as you thought. There is always someone who can be there for you.
  16. Loss is one of the hardest things we have to face in life. Ambiguous loss is the cruelest.
  17. Do not let whatever you’re feeling or going through be negated by being told that someone else has it “worse” or is experiencing “more” than you. Life doesn’t and shouldn’t always be a competition.
  18. Compliment girls more on their character and ambitions and less on their looks.
  19. Writing it out or talking it out is the cheapest and most soothing form of therapy.
  20. I still have a lot to learn.
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