21 Things I Learned By 21
1. Vulnerability gets me life-long friends. Faking perfection will get me a couple random admirers and maybe a few extra Instagram likes...and that’s about it.
2. The things I struggle with, and the things other people struggle with, are real. Just because something isn’t a big deal to me, doesn’t mean it isn’t a big deal. Just because something isn’t a big deal to someone else, doesn’t mean it isn’t a big deal. Nobody is “just being dramatic”. It’s important to validate my own feelings and validate the feelings of those around me.
3. Try your best to do and be good. Assume others are doing the same. Let that be enough.
4. Life-long, trustworthy friends are not always going to dress the same as me, talk the same as me, or look the same as me. Back in high school and freshman year of college, I used to want all “cute” friends that looked good for me to hang out with. Now I just want real friends.
5. Be loving to people you don’t necessarily “need” to be nice to. Buy your mom flowers for no reason, treat your very best friend to dinner. It’s easy to be kind to strangers. It says a lot about someone’s character when they’re kind to the people closest to them.
6. Believe that God loves you.
7. The world doesn’t deserve my fear, but God does.
8. It’s not weak to ask for help.
9. The most dangerous thing I can be is not friendless, boyfriendless, jobless, or broke. The most dangerous thing I can be is far from God.
10. Take comfort in the teas, coffees, and warm conversations of the world. Let the smallest things provide joy. There are only so many days of my life where I’ll be on vacation or on a rollercoaster. But a hot cup of coffee or an intentional talk with my roommate? I can have that everyday. That makes for a pretty happy life.
11. Go on more picnics.
12. Cinnabon coffee creamer is the BEST coffee creamer.
13. Live freely. Constantly worrying about what other people are thinking or saying is one way to put myself in immediate bondage and slavery. God’s love for me is a license to live boldly in what He has called me to say and do. Stop and ask yourself, why am I tripping over what PEOPLE are saying when the creator of the universe calls me good and only good? And then stop trippin.
14. What God has set in place, will never ever fail. What God has denied, can never ever succeed.
15. If you don’t have anything nice to say, zip it until you do. And if your words aren’t coming from a genuine place, pray until they are. God isn’t impressed with our ability to be surface-level nice to people we actually can’t stand. Loving with clenched fists isn’t actually loving at all.
16. Stop putting pressure on yourself to get married, get a job, to find your lifelong friends. These things happen when you sit back and enjoy the ride.
17. My mom actually really loves me...like, A LOT
18. Try not to be so afraid of change, okay?
19. Be humble enough to have role models, be confident enough to serve as a role model for other people.
20. Be willing to be misunderstood in the name of Jesus. People are going to see acts of kindness & free living as “weird”, and that’s okay.
21. Be so secure in who God has called you to be that you don’t engage in competition with other people. He has a specific and valuable path for each and every one of His children. Shining light on others won’t dim your own.