For reals. I have been 25 for 13 days and these past 13 days have been very busy, very rewarding, very eye opening, and full of changes. The days leading up to my birthday there were things I had discussed with a couple good friends, my boyfriend, and my family that were going to be big changes to happen in my 25th year. All of them scary in a “who knows exactly how this is going to go” kind of way but none of them too difficult or challenging to the point where I would reconsider doing them. To name a few of the things that I have been doing in the past 13 days alone is transitioning into vegetarianism – I would currently consider myself a “flexitarian”, on a daily basis I challenge myself to not eat meat and chose alternatives to animal products such as milk and eggs, upping my commitment to growing my hair extension business – I have made commitments to myself as a brand and to my clients to ensure that the quality of the hair extension installation as well as the client experience are both top priority and maintaining a high level of quality control, making commitments to my continued financial success to ensure that I am able to do all of the things in life that I want to do, and deciding to pursue an education that will directly enhance my professional capabilities.
Decisions like these sometimes have like a domino effect on other things, making the importance for other types of change extremely evident, and it also brings to light what is important for your future success and who doesn’t belong on your journey. Ah! Such is life!
13 days in and it’s been a hell of a ride. I have made lots of realizations, accomplished great strides in both my personal and professional life, and can’t wait for more. Here’s to a fantastic 25th year, and to kick it off here are my top 25 realizations about life:
1. Invest In Yourself: Money, time, love, and education. Just always be working on yourself. Think long-term. Yeah, school sucks, but it will pay off. Let yourself be a positive investment and always put in work.
2. Be Competitive For Success, Not for Men: There is someone in my life who currently who has similar aspirations and does some similar extracurricular activities as me. I want her to succeed. I want her to be able to expand her scope of success. I consider this as a sort of competitor support, although we are not directly competitors and I would never want her to fail; however, her being better at what she does just pushed me to be the same. Push others towards success. How will you ever be great if you don’t surround yourself with other successful people?
3. Eat Those French Fries: Shove them in. I guarantee you’ll love it. Yes, life is all about moderation and sometimes you should just let yourself enjoy something. You can’t go through life actively depriving yourself from eating or doing things you crave. Let yourself enjoy life! Be vibrant and eat your french fries.
4. Make Others Laugh: Be funny! Say funny stuff! Making others laugh is amazing and it make you feel amazing too. You never know, the smallest joke or quip could brighten someones day when they need it most.
5. Adopt: I have never adopted a child but I have adopted a kitty cat. She’s the loudest, neediest tail-less monster but I feel wonderful knowing her senior years will be spent suntanning on the deck, eating all the treats, sleeping in the closet, and carrying her toys from room to room. Give an animal with out a home a loving fur-ever home, you won’t regret it!
6. Be Outrageously Independent: Pay for your own everything and work hard for your own money. Don’t be afraid to take help from others but also don’t be afraid to do a lot of things for yourself. Yeah, you probably can build that bird house. You’re baking a 6 layer wedding cake? You got this! YOU CAN DO IT.
7. Phrases You Should Never Say: “Go kill yourself”, “I hate (insert person’s name here)”, “He’s too good for me”, “I’m not good enough”, “I could never pull that off”, “I’m not smart enough”, “I’m not pretty enough”, “No, I can’t go to that because (insert boyfriends name here) said I wasn’t allowed”, “I can’t talk to you because (insert boyfriends name here) said I can’t”. Like….just don’t.
8. Colour Your Hair: I have been all the hair colours. It’s great. I am happiest as a blonde but I would have never discovered that without being everything else in between! Go pink or purple! Go rainbow colours! Be brave and express your wildest hair dreams!
9. Wear The Bikini: Yeah, your butt might be a bit on the larger size. You never heard Sir Mix A Lot singing about tiny butts. Whatever the reason is that you feel like you can’t put that bikini on just forget it. Let the sun worship your skin and let yourself enjoy the beach. Show it off!
10. It’s ‘Ok’ To Have An Opinion: Don’t be afraid to talk passionately about anything and everything! Whether it be something small or something big, just think your own thoughts and have you own opinions. I imagine one of the worst things would be going through life, repurposing the opinions and ideas of others as your own.
11. Know That Men are Equal: If you aren’t expected to pay for everything, neither should he. I am always constantly surprised by the notion that men should support women. Doesn’t that seem a little counter productive to the whole women are just as valuable as the opposite sex? It sets the stage for the idea that women are not their own providers. Be a 50/50 partner in your relationship. If he pays for dinner one time, you pick up the next time. If he gets the groceries one time, you get it the next time. Support each other! Even on first dates, offer to pay! If you two are going to move forward, set a precedent that it will be a partnership and he shouldn’t be expected to shell out his money to buy you everything. Get your own money!
12. Chin Up, Boobs Out: Girl, work it! You only get the one body, love it. Carry it with pride. What’s that? You don’t look like Kim Kardashian on the cover of Vogue? Kim Kardashian doesn’t even look like Kim Kardashian on the cover of Vogue. Whether you’re a size 00 or a size 2000 just rock it!
13. Pop An Attitude: Sass attack. My fave. I refuse to be talked down to for whatever reason. I have always had an issue with authority. I once had a professor who continually gave me lower marks than I deserved (that sounds very self absorbed BUT a friend in the same class put together sub-par assignments knowing they were sub-par and continually got higher marks than I did) and when confronted about it he had little to no explanation and was unable to show me where I lost marks. I then proceeded to make him remark all my assignments which made a considerable difference in my grade. His laziness or oversight could have cost me a couple letter grades and resulted in a lower GPA. Stand up for yourself, if that’s misconstrued as having an attitude problem, so be it. Be ruthless when getting what you deserve and don’t let anyone tell you different.
14. Decide What You Stand For: Vegan, Vegetarian, Liberal, Conservative, whatever! Decide what you believe and don’t be afraid to stand up for it. In the same token you have to respect everyone else’s right to do the same. We live in an age of anonymity, the internet allows many people to luxury of not having to take responsibility for their actions. It’s very commonplace for someone to respond “go kill yourself” or “You’re an idiot I hope you die” to something they don’t agree with. Really? No one would EVER say that to someone’s face! Respect the fact that EVERYONE is able to have an opinion and believe in whatever, it doesn’t mean you have to agree, it just means don’t be an asshole.
15. Pet Everything: Goats, pigs, dogs, cats, cows, maybe not bears, chickens! Make a connection with animals. They hold space on this earth just as we do. They have value and they are emotionally intelligent. Obviously, don’t invade their space or force your presence upon them but admire them for what they are, what they add to the world, and the unconditional love they are able to show.
16. Don’t Let Your Boyfriend Decide What You Like: Just because he likes you in a certain outfit doesn’t mean you have to agree. Just because he wants you to dye your hair doesn’t mean you have to do it. He can do whatever he wants with his own self and so can you. Stick to what you like and he’ll just have to deal with it, if he can’t he can just roll out.
17. Don’t Run: Debt, ex boyfriends, past pain, etc. Just don’t run. If you don’t deal with things head on they will catch you. Pretending it doesn’t exist or acting like it never happened isn’t an effective way of dealing with things. Get help, whether it be with a counsellor or financial advisor or whatever type of assistance would be best suited for you. They will help you with a plan to move forward in a positive way.
18. Don’t Be ‘Ok’ With Being “Just A Pretty Face”: I once had someone tell me at a job interview that I was “smarter than I look”. Pardon me? Typically beauty is not synonymous with intelligence, a stereotype which is complete crap. If you have ever had anyone tell you that you don’t look intelligent or imply that most of your value if superficial, let your mind speak for you. Be a sassy, intelligent beast and my favourite move is to make them feel as stupid as their comments about you. I find it to be the best, most effective vengeance.
19. Take Avantage of Education: Free education is available for a very small portion of your life. Take advantage of that. Afterwards, pursue it whether it is free or not. This education doesn’t have to be academic, just do anything that expands what you know about yourself, others, and the world. Floating through life in a close minded fashion is a waste. Always be prepared to expand what you know and be open to learning experiences.
20. Do What Makes You Feel Good: Make YouTube videos of you singing, play soccer, take break dancing lessons. Do it! Just get out there and feel passionate about making yourself feel good! Silence all the voices saying that you can’t do it for whatever reason and just go!
21. Recognize and React to Red Flags: This relates to both men and friends. Do your friends almost require you to dislike whomever they like? Did your date advise against you getting french fries instead of a salad? BYE. You don’t need that in your life. If you want a french fry, you go get it. If you like someone your friend doesn’t like, maybe that person doesn’t know how to be a good friend. Just realize how much you deserve, the level of respect and kindness that should be shown to you, and make sure you stand up for yourself and what you believe in.
22. Don’t Diet: What’s that? You’re on the cucumber diet where you don’t eat anything but cucumbers for 14 days? That sounds amazing. What’s going to happen when you start eating real food again? Oh yeah! That’s right! You’ll be back to square one! Basically, just eat consciously and with your optimal health in mind. Eat your fruits and veggies, get adequate vitamins and minerals, and make sure you are getting enough protein. Just don’t eat that whole box of cookies in one sitting and you’ll be golden.
23. Avoid Debt: Especially, consumer debt. We live in a consumer world and it is INCREDIBLY easy to find yourself in an incredible amount of debt in a short amount of time. I personally am afraid of debt and have made is thus far without student loans or debt. Yes, paying up front for post secondary education is EXCRUCIATINGLY STRESSFUL; however, I will be able to get ahead faster post-university and will not be struggling to pay off anything. Struggling and hustling is for your 20’s and 30’s, 40+ is for enjoying life and with today’s student loans people are typically still paying them off through the majority of their lives. Just…don’t spend money you don’t have unless it’s an emergency and you will be able to pay it off in a reasonable amount of time.
24. Put Yourself First: Your success and happiness should be a huge priority. Don’t let being guilt you or persuade you into doing things you don’t want to do. Do you!
25. Fuck ’em: Don’t let people tell you who you are, what’s wrong with you, or how you should be. At the end of the day if they feel the need to tell you how you should be as a person, think of the inferiority complex they must have about themselves that they need to dictate to you what you should be. Bye Felicia.
Thanks for reading