Lessons Learned in My 35 Years of Life

Lessons Learned In My 35 Years of Life

I will turn into the even riper age of 35 in exactly 87 days 2 hours 43 minutes (and counting). So many things happened, so much I’ve learned. It saddens me (just a wee bit!) when I think of all the things I’ve yet to experience and accomplish. And I should be doing them before it gets too late.

On a totally different note, I think I am more focused and zealous of living. Perhaps because I had a lot of growing up to do these past years, hence, I view myself as a wiser, more patient woman.
All that aside, one thing I am very certain of: I have learned many, many good things.

  1. Life never goes according to plan. But enjoy it anyway. – Do you remember that plan you carefully made when you were younger? Well, guess what, it may not work out the way you wanted it to be but it’s okay. In all honesty, I can vaguely remember the plans I made when I was younger. But rest assured, for the most part, it worked out better. Crazy things have happened to me that made me who I am. I treasure all the good memories and trust that the best of it is yet to come.
  2. Family comes first. – Your family may (or may not) drive you crazy. But, they are everything. Love them. Spend time with them. Because before you know it, they’ll be gone. And, trust me, you’ll be wishing they’re still around no matter how difficult they are sometimes.
  3. Take the risk. Even if it scares the shit out of you. – Do it even if it is out of your comfort zone. It may not work out but at least you’ll not regret it because there will be no “What if”. The scariest thing I’ve done was to move half the world away for love. I lived there for a little while, and whilst the relationship didn’t work out, I have no regrets. The memories I made there were amazing. But I am equally as happy being home right now.
  4. Stop comparing yourself to what everyone else is doing. Give yourself a break. – Unfortunately, I still do this sometimes. Especially when I am on LinkedIn and see the updates of my successful friends. I am 35, unemployed with (an almost) 3 months old baby. Oh and, I am living at my mom’s. By the society’s standard, I may be an utter failure but hey, I did it by choice (refer to lesson #2). I still believe the best is yet to come. I am running my own race.
  5. Travel. See the world. Experience all the good (and bad) it has to offer. – Don’t wait ’till you are retired. You have no idea what will happen in the future. All you have is right now. If you’ve got the calling to go abroad and explore: do it. If you’re really pulled to do something different (career-wise): do it. There is so much more to life than the office you sit in, the home you live in and the life you’re leading. Get out and explore. You don’t know how much time you have left. Might as well enjoy it, right?
  6. Words are the most powerful tool. – Choose your words wisely, especially with the people you love. Because words, my dear friends, can make or break relationships/friendships.
  7. A “No” goes a very long way. – When life is so full, there’s zero downtime. It can be exhausting sometimes. I learned to say “No” for the sake of my sanity, especially to things that don’t add anything meaningful to my life.
  8. Stop trying to please others. It’s a bad hobby. – We’re all guilty of this. Sometimes, we spend so much time and effort trying to please others. It is utterly useless and harmful in the long run. For all it’s worth, be selfish! It is completely okay to please yourself first.
  9. Cry for those who value your tears. – And trust me. If they value your tears, they will not make you cry.
  10. Accept the fact that people change. You change. – The sooner you accept it, the easier it will be. When people tell me I’ve changed, well, I take it as a compliment. Friendships change too. It’s plain and simple. Sometimes, you’ve gotta let go. It’s okay to only have very few close friends as you get older. Acquaintances are great for networking purposes but not for sucking up all your time.
  11. Add people who make you love yourself to your life. – Subtract those who are filled with negativity from it. And also, remember to multiply those who are genuine while dividing the ones that take you for granted.
  12. Take it easy. – Slow down, don’t rush. You can’t do everything. There’s only so much time in a day, week, even months. I realized now that it is not my job to accomplish everything. Other people can help too. Some tasks can wait for much later. I learned (the hard way) that letting go of some things is the secret to happiness.
  13. When you want something, ask for it. – If you want a raise, different work arrangement or even something as simple as a little help taking care of your child: ask for it. The worst thing that could happen is being given “no” as the answer. But you might be surprised by how often you’d receive a “yes”.
  14. Say “Sorry” and “Thank you”. – These two words go a long way in establishing peace and harmony. Trust me.
  15. Don’t waste too much time arguing. It’s pointless. – Those who want to understand things will do so without much arguing. Those who do not want to will never come ’round to it no matter how many times you argue about it. They will never get it.
  16. I deserve time to myself. – Well, I should make this a mantra and say it every day. Really. I find it easy to put myself last, especially when one has a tiny ‘lil human who requires a lot of attention. But lately, I’ve been reclaiming my own time. I take a nice, (very) long shower. I pick up a book to read. Occasionally, I managed to find time to sit down and blog 🙂
  17. Accept the good in others. – If you like something in somebody, tell that person. It will do both of you good.
  18. Seek quality. – Not only in tangible things, but also in the more important non-tangible things. Seek quality in relationships, in thoughts, in conversations. In fact, seek quality in everything.
  19. Having makeup-free days (even weeks!) will do you good. – Yup, you read it right. Try it. You’ll be glad you did.
  20. Cheap red wine is way better than cheap white wine 🙂
  21. Find someone who wants to be a team with you. – Find someone who wants to be your cheerleader, who wants to see you succeed and most importantly, you both have got each other’s backs.
  22. Communication is very important.
  23. Love is one huge circle. – In a long-term relationship or even marriage, people tend to fall in love, then out of love and eventually, they break up. You can easily fall back in love if you remember why you jumped into it in the first place. Relationships aren’t at all like Disney movies. They are hard work. You have to put in effort, even when you don’t feel like it sometimes (given you’re with the right person, that is). Stop thinking it’s meant to be easy. It is not but it’s okay.
  24. Learn to be happy. Even if you’re on your own.
  25. Some people are in your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime. – It’s okay if they go away. They may or may not come back. That’s okay too. Love them regardless. Hey, life goes on right?
  26. Put as much effort into friendships as you do relationships.
  27. If you don’t like where you are, leave. – I know, I know. Easier said than done. I dealt with depression and anxiety while working for a rather well-known airline a couple of years ago. I loved the job and my colleagues there. But the environment is killing me. I remember how much different my life was when I decided to walk away.
  28. Life comes in season. – Having a baby can make you feel like you’d be dealing with the hardship forever. But, babies get bigger. It will be over before you even know it. Sure, it is bittersweet. But unfortunately, there’s no way around it so you gotta live it.
  29. You will get through even the worst day of your life.
  30. You’re never too old to learn something new or dream bigger.
  31. Don’t be afraid to be weird, as long as it is your authentic self.
  32. Your health is your wealth. – So stop treating your body like a trash can. Stop punishing it when it’s the only one you have. Be kind to yourself and celebrate you.
  33. Some people are going to disappoint you. And you can’t change them. – But you can still be kind. When you stop letting others control your feelings, you’re free.
  34. You’re exactly where you need to be right now. – Even if things aren’t where you want them to be, enjoy it anyway. Appreciate what you have right now because before long, you’ll look back and wish you’d do it differently. By then, it will be a little too late.
  35. Live, despite the chaos. Trust happiness.

3 thoughts on “Lessons Learned In My 35 Years of Life”

  1. These are such good life lessons! I relate to so much of what you’ve said and I think I need to bookmark this and keep coming back to it in future! Thank you so much for sharing 🙂

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