My 22nd birthday is coming up just next month, meaning I can finally know what Taylor Swift was talking about in her seminal anthem celebrating what was otherwise just the year after (the already over-hyped) 21.
With graduation right around the corner and the start of another chapter looming up ahead, I thought it seemed like a good time to both procrastinate on essays and reflect on what I’ve learned about life (and myself) in those 22 years…
1. You don’t function well on less than 7 hours sleep. Prioritize getting that.
2. Double stuff Oreos are infinitely better than regular ones.
3. It’s much easier to just ask someone if you’re lost/need help/are confused than spend twice as long trying to figure it out yourself.
4. Someone else’s achievement does not = your failure.
5. Take moisturizer on airplanes to avoid your skin looking like a cracked mirror when you get off.
6. One cookie really won’t make a difference to anything; except maybe your smile.
7. Grudges are pointless, and hate is heavy. Let it go.
8. You’ll never leave the gym wishing you DIDN’T do that workout.
9. You’ll always wake up wishing you DID take your makeup off after last night.
10. It’s always better to be early than late.
11. Watching videos of kids being surprised with trips to Disney World will brighten any day.
12. Nobody cares about your life as much as you do; everybody is out for themselves, and that’s okay.
13. Taylor Swift songs will always make you feel like you want to dance.
14. If you don’t feel like going out, stay in. It’s your life.
15. Cinemas don’t actually care if you take your own snacks in, so don’t bother trying to hide them.
16. Trying to be cool really isn’t cool – being yourself is.
17. Breakfast really is the most important (and best) meal of the day.
18. No number of likes on social media will ever be enough – happiness starts with you.
19. You’re never going to forget all the colours in Joseph’s Technicolor Dreamcoat from when you sung them at age 11.
20. Nobody makes pancakes like your mum does.
21. Have patience with customer service workers – you don’t know what happened before they clocked in that day.
22. Loving yourself isn’t vanity; it’s sanity