Biggest Life Lessons I’ve Learned Thus Far

I’ve been on this planet for eighteen years now and though I’ve still much to grasp, I’ve learned quite a bit, a lot of which would have benefited me to have known earlier on in my life. I’m gonna let you in on these little lessons in hopes that they can help you now so you won’t have to wait until future-you picks up on them. 

Here are some of the biggest life lessons I’ve learned so far:

Your Life is Yours—Nobody Else’s

Sounds obvious enough, huh? Be that as it may, when I was younger, one of my biggest problems was that I was always so concerned with what other people would think of me. Are the colours I’m wearing too bright? Will they think I’m too skinny? Are they gonna think I’m weird for liking cartoons at 13?

Years after being so wary of how people would judge me, I began to ask myself something very important: why am I so worried about that? Why does it matter if someone doesn’t like what I’m wearing or finds my interests absurd?

Of course, there are always people out there who, for whatever reason, make it their life mission to judge those around them. For the most part, however, everyone is just out here living their own lives the best they can. You should do the same. 

Whether it be wearing heels at 5’9” or loving anime, do whatever it is you want to do. It’s your life. You’re not living for anybody else.

Water is Your Best Friend

This is something my mom has drilled into my brain over the years. So much so, in fact, that whenever anyone tells me they have a headache or something like that, my reflexive response is simply, “Drink water.”

Water has countless benefits, which is why most health experts recommend drinking 2 litres per day, though it depends on the individual. It helps with digestion, regulating water temperature, stabilizing your heartbeat, and much more. 

I’ll admit that I myself don’t drink as much water as I should, but I know just how essential it is for all of us to ensure we get our daily amount—don’t get dehydrated!

Do What You Love (and Love What You Do)

In the past, especially when picking my major, I had tons of trouble deciding what it was I wanted to do. For practically my whole life, my parents told me to become a doctor. Go into sciences or something, they'd say. 

I knew that wasn’t what I wanted. Science was never really my niche, not something that drove me. All I knew was that I loved two things: reading and writing. Thus, despite everything I’d been told and everything I’d heard, I chose English as my major. Now, I wanna give past-me a hug for following her heart and making that decision.

No matter what it is you’re doing, ensure you’re not letting others decide for you. You’re the only one who knows what’s best for you. After all, what’s the point in anything if you don’t love it? Sure, others may tell you it’s the ‘best option,’ heck, you may even believe it yourself at one point, but always bear this in mind: if you don’t like it, it’s probably not worth it.

Life Goes On

We all have days where it feels like the entire world is crashing down on you and you’re suffocating underneath all the rubble, almost certain you won’t make it another day.

After countless days just like that, I’ve begun to notice something: I make it through. Every time. 

Even in the darkest moments, even during the days you just want to give up, remember that you, too, will make it through—you always have and I know you’re not going to stop now. Life goes on, even in the worst of times. 

Tomorrow isn’t as bad as it seems—believe me.

Fear Gets You Nowhere

When I was younger, I used to be afraid of everything—and I mean everything. Bloody Mary, the dark, the house from Monster House. You know, normal stuff. As I got older, though, I eventually let go of those fears and began to latch on to ones much realer instead: fear of failing, fear of letting people down. And those are just a couple. 

As a result, I would always tiptoe around everything in life, cautious and wary about every little path I took, every decision I made. 

Of course, that did me no good. In fact, it drove me crazy. 

It took me years of being afraid to finally realize that fear was my worst enemy. It was holding me back in ways I felt I had no control over. 

I had to slowly teach myself not to be afraid. To let go of my fears, the burdens on my shoulders. Once I did, the weight became far lighter and I didn’t have to tiptoe everywhere I went—I could walk freely. 

We’re all scared of something and, true, sometimes fears are impossible to forget, but don’t let them hold you back. Don’t let them be the reason you miss out on an amazing opportunity or avoid doing something that could quite possibly benefit you greatly. Fears are mere restraints, trapping you—you are far bigger than your fears. 

Procrastination Actually Isn’t All That Bad

Now, I’m not saying write your final essay for that one course the night before it’s due. What I mean is, you don’t always have to do every single thing on your to-do last ASAP. 

I don’t know about you, but forcing myself to get tasks done never really results in my best work. I have to be in a productive headspace in order to actually create something I’m proud of. 

I know what I’m capable of completing in a certain amount of time. If I feel that my time would be better spent doing something else and the task at hand is something that I can put off but still get done on time, then that’s what I’m going to do. As long as I put my best into whatever I’m doing, I’m good to go. 

I’m Worth It (and So Are You)

Truth be told, I’m still getting the hang of this one, but I think I’ll get it down eventually.

I used to think it was unworthy of...well, anything. Love. Success. Happiness. I didn’t think I deserved any of it. 

Honestly, I don’t really know how I shifted from that perception of myself. I’d say it was a combination of things: songs by BTS telling me to love myself, the immense love and support from my friends and family (*waves*), but, most importantly, my own growth. It took time, sure, but I soon started to view myself as I view everyone I love—as someone deserving of everything life had to offer.

I know just how hard it can be for anyone to see themselves this way, but believe me when I say that each and every one of us (including you) is amazing and beautiful, inside and out. Just take a look at yourself—everyday, you manage to wake up and conquer every single thing life has ever thrown at you, then you do it all over again, no matter how hard it gets. You’ve carried yourself every day for your entire life. I’d say that’s worth something, wouldn’t you?

It’s true, I’ve had my share of hardships. I still do, but it’s those exact experiences that teach me what I need to know in order to face the even tougher aspects of life, to continue putting one foot in front of the other. 

So that’s what I do. No matter how bad things get, no matter how impossible it feels, I keep putting one foot in front of the other—slowly, but steadily.