24 Things I've Learned at 24

Updated: Oct 17

It’s been a full year since my last post ‘23 Things I’ve Learned at 23’ and wow, what a year. From growing up, having fun, navigating through a new relationship, moving, letting go of friendships, and experiencing real world problems, it’s been a wild ride. To date, I’ve said and done things a younger me would have never expected — some good and some bad. All of which I can’t take back. Moral of the story? I’ve gained some wisdom I’d like to share with all of you in hopes you can make light of your own struggles.

  1. Faith can make or break you. Above all else, let your faith define you. Embrace it in ways you never thought possible. Take hold and never let go. It’s the most important factor in your life, and losing it can make a world of difference. Having faith means staying strong in times of success and times of discouragement. It means having a bigger being to lean on when everyone else lets you down. Let your faith be the guiding light of your life and don’t look back.

  2. Depression and anxiety are real. Not to put a damper on things, especially since this is a positive blog, but if you’re someone battling with depressing thoughts or anxious feelings, you’re not alone. We all have them. For some, bad moods and negative thoughts come and go. But for others? It can mean losing friendships, feeling alone, taking medications you don’t want to take. It looks like sleepless nights and constant tears. Nightmares. Difficulty breathing. Cold sweats. Crying so much it hurts to cry anymore. Depression and anxiety are real and they’re serious. So, if you’re someone struggling through dark times, know that you’re not alone. There’s resources to help you, people out there who truly love and care about you. Find yourself again, find your purpose and keep taking it one day at a time. Trust me, it’s a battle you can win.

  3. Revival. The recovery seasons of life are the parts that stick with you for years to come. Healing, gathering your thoughts, and getting your life back in order feels amazing. Let the revival periods happen as they will. Welcome the positive emotions.

  4. Some things don’t last forever. As much as you want them to or not, things change. Situations don’t always stay the same. Friendships go just as easily as they came. Relationship dynamics change in the blink of an eye. Accepting change as a part of life, and it’s vital to surviving it.

  5. Promises mean little, actions mean everything. Pay attention to what others do, not what they say. Promises are easy, but just as easily as they can be made they can be broken too.

  6. Never settle. For anything.

  7. Setbacks suck. Losing your dream, making mistakes, and starting over can be devastating. It’s up to you and you alone to pick up the pieces and make the most of your situation.

  8. Habits shape you. This is one of the most important points I’ve learned. Developing and upholding healthy habits are everything. Habits are what keep you in check; they keep you motivated and focused. Consistently following healthy habits can not only empower you in all the ways you want, but also help you rise above the lows in life.

  9. Find love, or don’t. It’s up to you! Whether you’re single, married, divorced, in a relationship, whatever — it’s entirely up to you to decide. Make choices after a lot of thought, prayer, advice and time.

  10. Allow yourself to have ‘dark times’. Nobody is happy all of the time. We all fall, feel less than we are. Sometimes it’s okay not to push through. It’s okay if you don’t make it. It’s okay if you’re having a rough day, week, month, year, however long it takes to heal.

  11. Feed your soul. Give yourself things that matter. Feed your mind, heart and soul with the good in life. Find your happy place, visualize a better you, work on optimism. You have to give yourself inspiration, and it all starts with the content you allow yourself to absorb.

  12. Losing small arguments means you win in life. This isn’t to say that you should let others walk over you, but realize that while losing small battles is hard, it’s so worth it. Being a bigger person, biting your tongue and moving on is the most exhilarating feeling. It’s a major accomplishment, and it means you’re one step closer to being a ‘mature adult’.

  13. Life is full of seasons. As many if not all of you have learned, life can feel like a giant roller coaster. One minute you’re on top of the world, and the next? Flat on your face starting over. From high school, college, working, living on your own, having a family, the newness of life never ends! There’s always something waiting to pop in your life and make you question everything you thought you knew. It can be both exhilarating and exhausting all at once. The seasons of life may hurt you, even break you, but they make you wiser. They help you become more understanding, more thankful.

  14. Too much of anything can be damaging. Learn to find the fine lines in life! Go out with your friends. Make time for you and you alone. Say yes. Say no. Everything in moderation.

  15. Open your heart to God’s will for your life. Not your own. Trust me, you’re better off accepting what He has in store for you, even if that path isn’t what you originally had planned for yourself.

  16. Get moving. Hit the gym. Get involved in sports. Take up walking. Practice yoga. Whatever! Getting active calms your nerves, frees your mind and lifts your spirit. Your body isn’t meant to be tense from stress or inhibited from lack of movement. Your body needs you, and it’s your duty to take care of it.

  17. Podcasts are amazing. It’s all about finding what speaks to you, but finding podcasts that you relate to can be invigorating. Whether educational, easy content, faith-filled listens, or thought-provoking episodes that lead you to question your entire existence, there’s genres for everyone. They’re great resources for faith, knowledge and advice. Listen to podcasts on the way to work, while you’re cooking dinner or going for a walk. Total game changers, I promise you that.

  18. Fall in love with God before you fall in love with anyone else. If you let yourself love the world first, you limit everything the Lord has in store for you. I’ve learned this the hard way. Relying on someone else before you rely on God can turn your world upside down, and not in a good way. It can steal your joy and lead to choices you wouldn’t normally make alone. Leaning on a man/woman first can cause insecurity, loneliness and codependency if God isn’t at the core of that relationship.

  19. Not everyone is going to understand you. And that’s okay.

  20. Follow your path, not someone else’s. What do I mean by this? Make sure you love what you love, not someone else. Being a people pleaser, trying to fit it, appease a significant other? It gets you nothing but a sense of emptiness. It can make you forget your own identity. Hold tight to everything that makes you uniquely you. Find solace and purpose in the things you enjoy most. Capitalize on authenticity and originality.

  21. Forgiveness can heal you. I learned something recently, and that’s that forgiveness isn’t necessarily for the person that hurt you. Forgiveness is for you. Forgiving someone means remembering the actions and hurt you experience, but moving on and choosing to put the past behind you. Forgiveness not only helps you find peace of mind, but it heals you. It heals your heart and soul. It’s the start of a new beginning; a process of regaining trust in the other person. It’s letting go of resentment and bitterness. Forgetting revenge or ‘getting even’. Forgiveness is hard, especially in dire circumstances, but it’s what we’re called to do. No matter who hurts or betrays you, find forgiveness. Rise above the hate.

  22. Sometimes you just need to pause. Put on the breaks and take a step back. Literally go outside and smell the roses. Find peace in silence, and learn to stop and appreciate life. Train yourself to stay quiet in seasons of bitterness. Remain faithful in times of uncertainty. Calm in moments of anger.

  23. Journaling is soothing. I’m not talking about writing a novel, or even a blog post. I’m talking authentic, honest words for you and you alone. Write your feelings down. Make lists. Reflect. Find answers and healing by writing everything down. It doesn’t have to be grammatically correct, look like a calligraphist wrote it, or even sound eloquent. Getting words onto a page can make you feel heard, valued and understood. It’s therapeutic, and it’s all a part of a healthy lifestyle. It’s something anyone can do.

  24. Find your purpose. If you don’t already, try and figure out what your purpose is in life. Big or small, it can help you feel at ease when day-to-day activities seem pointless. We were all placed on this earth for a purpose. Better yet, we were all designed for many purposes! Meditate on it, pray about it, and act on what God calls you to do with your life. The process doesn’t happen overnight, and answers aren’t instantaneous, but I’m sure you’ll find yours (if you already haven’t)!

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