Soooooo my 20th birthday isn’t until late June. Quite honestly I am not even over halfway done with being 19 yet. However, I’ve always been a few steps ahead of even my own self and even though my friends that know of my love for kid’s section clothing may disagree, I have a pretty old soul for 19. (It’s a total Cancer thing. & every friend that knows how obsessed I am with zodiac signs is totally rolling their eyes right now, but it’s true! The stars don’t lie, look it up!) I’m also a freak about lists, and I also N E E D to clear my mind and write after this week of school work. So with all that being said, I got to work on my 20 before 20 list a little over six months early. Overachiever or just a girl REALLY excited to no longer be a teenager, you tell me.
I’ve changed and grown as a human bean a whole lot in my teenage years (thank goodness) and have a billion and fourteen lil nuggets of wisdom that I would tell my younger self. I’m definitely still figuring it all out, especially considering I have taken how many years of English and just finished my Linguistics class and STILL have to autocorrect the word “definitely”…but I’ve got a few things under my belt, and a whole lot left to learn.
- The power of the word “no” in unbelievable. Learn that you don’t have to say “maybe” if what you really want to say is “no.” But also never say “no” because you’re too afraid to say, “I don’t know how can you teach me?” Never miss an opportunity simply because you’re afraid to learn.
- I know being materialistic isn’t the *best* thing to encourage, but sometimes buying yourself nice stationary or new shoes can make a hard day easier, and that’s okay. Use the money grandpa gives you as a sanity fund, your paychecks should go towards college. seriously, save your money for college.
- You will meet people who do not like you. You will meet people who do not think you’re attractive. You will meet people who don’t think you’re worthy of respect. That doesn’t matter in the long run, but it will hurt. Let it hurt, and then learn your worth and find the people that know it too. You’ll find plenty of those people in time.
- Forcing yourself to write out your feelings will not only save your own sanity but everyone you surround yourself with. You are not a fun girl when you have too much on your mind. You’re good at writing and good at expressing emotions, don’t let people convince you that being #soft is a bad thing.
- Buy the concert tickets the morning of and force your friend that knows maybe 2 songs to go. It’ll turn into one of the best nights and said friend will end up knowing just as many lyrics as you do.
- If you love someone, you’ll know. Never settle for anything less than the most exciting and heart racing and super duper good stuff. It’s not worth your time, and it’s not worth leading people on either if you don’t feel the same.
- Your softball career isn’t gonna go anywhere so don’t get your hopes up. However, it’ll be the best conversation starter, trending hashtag, and running joke for years to come so get ready.
- Driving 8 hours doesn’t usually sound fun. Driving 8 hours with three of your best friends to Texas for fall break simply because you can? The MOST fun. The money you save through AirB&B WILL be spent on REALLY good avocado toast and avocado popsicles and avocado macrons, don’t feel bad about it, you’re on vacation.
- Buy the bedazzled jeans, wear the sparkly converse, throw in your cornrows that make you feel like a badass. Being you and expressing it is the best way to love yourself. Do it all the time. You’re gonna be known as that girl in the pajama sets and pigtail braids, and you’re gonna own it.
- Don’t get mad at your sisters for stealing your clothes, just know it’s because they’ll never admit how badly they miss you. And when they do admit it, they’ll make you swear not to tell mom they miss you and stealing your sweater for 6 days in a row won’t seem so bad.
- You got a B in high school gym, don’t expect college health and exercise sciences to be any easier…
- Stop being so scared to let go of things that no longer serve you well / bring you happiness. Things that once meant the most to you in life may eventually end up meaning nothing and that’s okay. Change happens, we’re all fully aware you hate it, but you’ve got a whole lot coming.
- Not every class you take in school is going to make you fully confident with what you want to do with your career. Sometimes a class sucks because it’s math and you don’t like math…not because your entire life plan is wrong. Don’t let it get to your head, but also, take a few classes you like. You won’t regret signing up for that Career and Life Planning class second semester freshman year.
- Soak up every moment you have when you’re at home. Don’t take down the horrendous dance team pictures of yourself mom placed throughout your room and don’t be surprised when Maddy’s homework is left on your desk. Although you’ll cry A LOT less about leaving home sophomore year, you’re still gonna tear up every time you back out of the driveway. & your bed in Lawrence may be nice, but nothing is as nice as having your little brother across the hallway.
- Sometimes a weekend in your pajamas in your room watching far too much Gossip Girl that you’ve already seen is better for your sanity than forcing yourself to go out. Don’t let everyone else going out make you feel like you have to, but don’t isolate yourself from the world either. also, you’re gonna have way more fun on the nights out in tshirts and sneakers than you ever will trying to look good. fyi. throw on the jean jacket and keep your glasses on. nobody truly cares.
- Never quit being nice to everyone and smiling. You’re gonna make Elise Duryea cry at senior retreat because of it and it just may be the highlight of your high school career. But really, positive energy is infectious, and if you’ve got it, give it.
- You’re gonna struggle with the difference between giving someone a deserved second chance and letting them walk all over you. Know when to differentiate the two and stand your ground.
- You’re gonna drive 45 minutes to buy a $75 skirt for a ten-minute interview. And ya know what, you’ll look great, but you got the position because you deserved it. Giving yourself credit for hard work is never wasted. You can be humble while still feeling qualified and deserving.
- You can’t. do. everything. by. yourself. asking. for. help. is. not. a. weakness.
- You’re gonna drink too much coffee…start brainstorming ways to fix this now…but 19 year old you doesn’t have it figured out let either, so let’s keep that one just between us…(hey $2.34 for your go-to vanilla iced coffee with milk and light ice won’t break the bank.)
I’m positive there will be more than 20 more lessons learned simply in the next week, but that’s for another post. Keep dreaming big and working hard and learning lots, friends. Let’s change the world.
Until next time, xoxo, Ally