As i'm turning the scary yet exciting age of 20 this coming Thursday, I thought i'd put together a little post of 20 important things i've learnt so far to help any of you out there going through those, at times painful, and life-changing teen years!
1. Don't compare yourself to others
This is something i've had to seriously work on for a looong time but i've gotten a lot better at it. Saying things like "She has a nicer figure than me" or even "She's more successful in her education/career than I am" isn't healthy or good for your own self esteem. In the end, saying these thoughts to yourself is never going to make you feel better about yourself or improve you as a person. My tip is to switch those jealous/comparative thoughts into inspirational thoughts. So, instead of thinking "She's way more successful than I am"... think "What a remarkable woman, she motivates me to better myself. I wonder how she became so successful. Maybe I could ask her for advice on how she got where she is." ... these thoughts are much more productive! You have to think "if it's possible for her, it's possible for me too!" if you get my jist.
2. There are always new, amazing and interesting people round the corner
Some people are meant to come into your life for a reason, to teach you a lesson and some also left it for a reason- because it wasn't meant to be. Being at uni has made me realise how many more interesting and lovely people there are out there and that you'll always meet new people, that you get along with and have things in common with. Eventually you won't miss those people that left your life, trust me!
3. Bin that fake tan, just put it in the bin. You look fine the way you are
I used to religiously curl my (already curly!) hair and apply full o.t.t make-up every morning as well as 'cheesy wotsit' style fake tan every week. All of that just to fit in, to look 'good' and impress others. What a waste! Do what looks good on you, find your style, a make up look that suits you and not what you think you have to wear to be accepted and approved by people's opinions that don't even matter anyway.
4. Life changes a lot, and it gets a lot easier if you just get used to it
When my parents decided we were officially moving to France back in 2009, I knew that meant leaving my home country of the past 12 years, my home where I grew up, my friends I grew up with and everything I knew being left behind me and having to start all over again. Doing all of this just made me more adaptable to change and not being so afraid of it because you think "well, what's the worst that could happen?" because really in the end, it turns out pretty damn ok. Change is good.
5. Everyone is just winging it
This sort of refers back to number 1... though you may think that girl is more successful than you, she's probably struggling and stressing too in other aspects of her life. The majority of people you think have it easy have their ups and downs too and probably don't have a clue what they're doing with their lives either, so be kind and take things less seriously.
6. The harder you work, the luckier you get
I worked hard over the time I was living in France to learn french, and it paid off. I worked hard to get my qualifications at school, though i'm sure my teachers would disagree, and it paid off. I worked hard to get into uni and I work pretty hard on this blog and it all pays off. What goes around comes around, what you give you get back in return. Look at me trying to sound like Rhonda Byrne ey.
7. Go to that party you don't know most people at, go to that gig of the band you don't know, do things out of your comfort zone
These are opportunities you should say yes to, to an extent of course. I've often found the best nights out have been the unexpected, un planned nights that you spontaneously go to even though you're thinking "I won't like it, nobody will like me blablabla"- ignore those thoughts and just do it! (not sponsored by Nike)
8. Get off Facebook, get off Twitter and go outside
I, for one, am guilty of this. I spent a lot of my time on Bebo (back in the day), caring about what people thought of my profile, how many friends I had, who commented my photos - oh my god if I only I could slap my younger self...none of these things matter. Online fame and acceptance is like Monopoly money, it's not real. Of course teens growing up now are even more exposed to social media than ever before so it's a lot harder but remember to go outside and have fun, because you'll never be that young again, but technology will be around for as long as you live.
9. Don't be afraid to be like Bridget Jones
So you said something stupid, or fell in front of huge audience (*cough* Madonna), or got a bit too drunk and puked in front of everyone, or just really really put your foot right in it - it's OK. People f**k up all the time, even the 'pros' do. I actually like it when someone isn't afraid to laugh at themselves so just embrace it, because there will probably be many more embarassing moments to come #spoileralert.
10. Do your own thang
Stand out from the crowd, do what makes you happy and don't try to copy others to fit in. You will feel a lot happier for just doing what you want to do.
11. There's never a 'right' time
I'd put off doing things because I didn't think it was the right time for it, i'd say maybe tomorrow, maybe next week and then eventually never get round to it... so just go for it!
12. Everything get's a hell lot better
Trust me, high school, education, everything, all of that is just a small phase in your life which will actually go in really quickly, so try to enjoy it for what it is and know that things only get better.
13. Be with positive people that are happy and doing good things with their life
and avoid people with closed, negative minds.
14. That i'm always in a rush for everything
I set my alarm so I can be on time, yet I laze in bed for about half an hour longer then start panicking and rushing about like a headless chicken complaining about not having enough time. This a regular occurrence for me and something i'm just going to accept that will probably never change.
15. It's ok to eat crappy food once in a while and finish a whole packet of biscuits in one go
Yep, i've been there.
16. Don't mix vodka and wine on a night out
Not in the same glass obviously but yeah...I still don't think i've learnt my lesson on this one.
17. You can't please everyone...
...so you might as well please yourself! There's always going to be someone out there that doesn't like you or doesn't like what you do.
18. Having braces isn't the end of the world
It was 4-5 years I endured braces and yes it's a pain in the arse when you eat a burger or pizza, it's painful and annoying but those years will fly in and you will have a dazzling smile in no time. Oh, and remember to wear your retainers at night or all that treatment will have been good for nothing.
19. Your parents mean well, respect them
A belated apology to my parents who I was a total pain in the butt to when I was going through my puberty stage...your parents may annoy you now and may nag you a lot but honestly, as cheeesy as it sounds, it's because they friggin love you, how lucky are you! Don't ever take advantage of that.
20. Starting a blog was one of the best decisions i've made
I know this sounds pretty extreme to say, but I honestly have no idea what i'd be doing with my spare time, apart from partying and uni work, without my blog. It's a place i've created to share my life and interests with other people and I don't know what could be better than that. I've already had some great opportunities thanks to this blog and it has built my self confidence heaps.
Those are the 20 main things i've learnt throughout my teenage years...here's to the 20's!
Lots of love, Lucie Rose x