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20 Things I’ve Learned in My 20 Years

It’s been 20 years of learning, loving and living – and this is what I’ve grounded from my experiences.


1. Always be kind

Yes, it may be cliché, but there is so much hatred and bigotry in the world that there needs to be some kind of light to shine through it all. Be that light. Be kind even when it is the hardest act to do.


2. Feelings are fleeting

That hurt stemming from a recent break-up or your friend’s snide comments will subside with time. Do not let it affect you entirely. Eventually, you will come to terms with these feelings and how they have helped you grow into the person you are now.


3. Time management is important

As an avid procrastinator, I highly recommend time managing your schedule. Don’t do everything last minute. You will be much better off to just get it over with.


4. Love your family unconditionally

Your mom, dad, grandparents, aunts, uncles, stepparents, friends – they have all been where you are and are trying to help in any way that you can. They have gotten you to this point that you are at and the least you can do is be grateful and thankful that you are blessed with these wonderful people in your life.


5. Indulge in yourself (occasionally)

Go splurge on that new makeup line or jacket or new pair of boots that you’re dying to have. Eat that pack of donuts or pint of ice cream that has been taunting you since you left Kroger.


6. Do things for YOU. You’ll be happier

This is your life. Not anyone else’s. If something is not making you happy – leave it, get rid of it, change it, etc. Your priority should be your happiness. Never do something that you do not want to just to please someone.


7. Every person that comes into your life has some sort of significance

This can be good or it can be bad. Regardless, people come and go and they will either teach you a lesson or become a blessing.  


8. Everything is connected in one way or another

You know that person you met? Well chances are they know your grandparents first removed cousin. Okay, that may have been an exaggeration but typically the people you meet have some sort of connection that you never would have thought of.


9. Don’t dwell on the past too often – you can’t change it now

Nostalgia – the barer of late-night thoughts. Sometimes, it is good to reflect on what has happened, why you have changed and why you no longer need to feel these emotions. However, it can take a turn and become obsessive and/or rampant and damper your happiness. Don’t let the past control you – let it be a guide.


10. It’s okay to be scared/ask for help when you need it

Never be afraid to admit that something is not going right, that you don’t know how to do something or that you simply need help. This can range from projects to mental emotional or physical health.


11.  People will hurt you, and you can’t do anything but determine how you will react to it

It’s bound to happen at some point. It may have already happened. But strength and endurance will get you through anything. Always remember that feelings are fleeting. The hurt will pass and as time goes on, you will be okay again.


  12.  Never give someone half of your heart

Everyone in your life, whether it’s friendships or intimate relationships, deserves your whole heart. John Mayer knew what he was talking about.

13. The little things do matter

There may be things that you do that do not seem significant, but remember: people will remember how you made them feel rather that what you did. Hold that door open, help someone pick up their belongings, give a helping hand when needed and you may never know the impact that you will have on that person.


14. Give everything your all

Even though it may be hard, try your hardest to be the best you can. Work hard, love unconditionally and don’t let anything inhibit you.


15. Cherish relationships

This doesn’t necessarily mean just intimate relationships – it can include family relationships and friendships. Always spend time with the people that you love. Obligations can be postponed, but people cannot. Always cherish those you have in your life because one day they may not be here. 


16. You are not obligated to do anything for anyone

Never let anyone make you feel bad for not doing something that they expect or want you to do. Ever.


17.  Take road trips with your friends

Sometimes you just need a good destination and good company. Get together a road-trip playlist, decide where you want to go and just go. Stay for a weekend or just take a day-trip, it doesn’t matter; the memories will last a lifetime.


18. Be adventurous and daring and go out of your comfort zone

This will take some practice. I’m still learning to try new things and to not be so scared about everything all of the time. The more you do it, the less scared you will be and sometimes that is what makes everything worthwhile.

19. Spent some time alone

It’s good to know who you are without anyone being around you. It’s also a good feeling to have freedom and independence. 


20. It’s okay to not have anything figured out. Most of us don’t, anyway

The decade that will be known as your twenties is full of firsts. You may be starting a new career and moving to a new location. You could be getting married and having kids. It’s a realm of new experiences, and you are not the only one who may feel like you do not have it altogether. We are all trying to adjust to becoming adults.


Greetings! My name is Graeson Baker and I am currently a junior PR major here at WVU. For more info about me, feel free to check out my personal website at http://www.graesonbrooke.co.
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