Happy Birthday to Me! My Top 10 Life Lessons
Hey guys! Thank you so much for reading today. I know this is a long post, but it’s extra special to me because I’ll be talking about the top 10 things I’ve learned that have really helped me grow this past year. As I sit here on my 33rd birthday, I am proud to say that I finally feel like I know who I am and what I want to achieve in this short life. There’s this saying that I’m sure y’all have heard, and it has become one of my favorites. “The two most important days in your life are the day you were born and the day you find out why.” This quote speaks to me because I truly believe that once you find your purpose, everything else just falls into place. These 10 things I am going to talk about have really contributed to that for me. So….here goes!
Who you surround yourself with makes all the difference in the world. Evaluate the people who you spend the most time with. I think it’s really important to have friends and family in your life who inspire you, support you, and bring out the best in you. At the end of the day, if you want to be successful, you have to continue to learn and grow as a person, and if your people aren’t helping you do that, then you should be saying good riddance! Surround yourself with people who TRULY want to see you succeed and aren’t filled with envy or hate….and who are your biggest cheerleaders and have your back 100%.
Your comfort zone is your worst enemy. I was recently in a job I hated for almost 10 years. I would say that I was pretty unhappy for 4 out of those 10 years. I knew I had to leave, but I was comfortable. I was getting a steady income, had a great schedule, flexibility to take vacation when I wanted, two bonuses a year, and great insurance. All of those factors had me stuck, even though I knew it wasn’t for me and I was unhappy. When I finally decided to ignore those voices and go with my gut (with the push from my husband), my life changed. When we are safe inside of our comfort zone, we get stagnant. We don’t grow. And if we don’t grow, we don’t get anywhere in life, and we definitely aren’t going to fulfill our passions. You end up just existing, rather than really living. So, push yourself out of your comfort zone as much as you can. Take on the project that no one wants. Join a group at work that you’ve been interested in. Finally start that YouTube channel you’ve been thinking about (wink wink lol). Just do something that pushes you out of your bubble to allow yourself to keep growing.
Toxic people and situations will hold you back. The job I was in was definitely my main source of toxicity. I was so unhappy that it was pouring over into my life, my friendships, and my marriage. I was always stressed, and I honestly didn’t like the person I was becoming. I knew I wasn’t happy, but I didn’t know how bad it was until I actually removed myself from the situation and felt what it was like to be without it. This is the same case with toxic people. You may have a friend who you think is good for you because they’re fun to be around, but maybe they have other traits that are actually not good for you. Do you have someone in your life that thinks they’re always right, can never do wrong, thinks they’re perfect, and/or they act like they are interested in your goals/success but you feel that they really aren’t? That friendship probably takes a lot of work and energy. Well, that’s probably someone you want to think twice about. Once you remove the toxicity out of your life, amazing things will happen. Your mind will have room and time to actually explore what your true passions are and your purpose will be revealed.
Your mindset determines everything. Changing the way you think and react to situations makes all the difference in your life. A positive mindset means a positive life. This is SUPER hard for me. I tend to get stressed out and annoyed fairly easily, and it’s something I am working on every day. I have gotten better, but gosh being cut off on the highway just really pisses me off! Haha. When I feel overwhelmed or stressed, instead of getting angry and giving up, I tell myself to just take a breath, take one thing at a time, and get it done. I have found that when I do that, everything just ends up working out much more easily than I expected. It’s kind of crazy how that happens..
Don’t dwell on the past or worry about the future. Live in the present. It’s so easy to get caught up in the past and stress about things you’ve done or things you didn’t do. It’s also very easy to worry about what’s to come. How often do you worry about something that hasn’t even happened yet, or beat yourself up for a mistake you made? Probably more often than you realize. I’ve learned that doing this really affects our emotional well-being and leads to so much stress. I am guilty of it too. But I have gotten so much better, with the help of my husband, who is a pro at living in the moment. If you want to change your life, you have to spend time on the HERE and NOW and not stress about things that you have no control over.
Don’t compare yourself to others. This is a really hard one, especially with social media running the world. Since my job now is basically social media and I’m on it all the time, I sometimes find myself comparing EVERYTHING. “Ugh she’s so pretty, she’s so skinny, I wish I could wear that”, the list goes on. We’re all guilty of it. We spend so much time comparing ourselves to others that we don’t have time to realize the beauty and strength in ourselves. It ultimately leads to self doubt, and crushes your motivation. What I’ve learned since I started blogging is that we all have our own strengths to offer, and that most of the time, it’s not a fair comparison. Sometimes I’ll see another blogger and see that she’s getting tons of collaborations and really cool projects with big brands, and then I get down on myself like, “Why am I not getting those opportunities? What am I doing wrong?” But then I quickly realize that I’m comparing myself, who is at Stage 1, to someone who is at Stage 10. I have to take a step back and instead of comparing, I’ve learned to realize that I’ve made a ton of progress since I started, and if I keep working hard, I will get to Stage 10 one day.
Your thing isn’t going to be everyone else’s thing, and that’s okay. We all have our own passions and things we want to do, and not everyone is going to understand your goals and aspirations. There will be people in your life, even the people you are closest to, that will doubt you or think you’re dumb/silly/unrealistic, but that is OKAY. Their opinions don’t matter. I’m sure there are plenty of people who thought I was crazy for leaving my job and doing this now, but it’s what I’m passionate about and what I love. Life is way too short to not do something you love to do, even if people don’t understand it.
The universe is on your side. When you take risks and go out of your comfort zone for something you are passionate about, it’s kind of crazy what happens. Before I quit my job, I was telling one of my friends all of the “what ifs” that were going through my head and how scared I was. She then told me not to worry because the universe would help me. I didn’t really know what she meant at the time, but now I believe it more than ever. When I left my job, I didn’t really know what I was going to do. I just knew I had to get out for my own well-being. Two months after I left, the idea of blogging just popped into my head out of nowhere. It’s like the universe was trying to tell me that was the way to share my passion. I started researching how to start a blog, figured out what I needed to do, and just went for it! Although taking risks is scary, if you’re doing it for the right reasons, I truly believe that the universe will help you, and everything ends up working out, even if there are bumps along the way.
Anything that is worth doing isn’t going to be easy. If it were easy, everyone would do it. You have to work hard for what you want and do whatever it takes to reach your goals. If you want a promotion at work or want to lead a huge project, you have to work for it and show that you’re deserving of it. The same goes for anything you do in life that you love. If something is really important to you and you really really want it, it’s going to require dedication, discipline, and work. You’re not going to open that business or get that promotion just by doing nothing, right? It might be really hard and sometimes stressful, but in the end, it will be worth it.
You really can do whatever it is you want to do in life. I will admit that about two years ago, I did not believe this. I was more of a realist and had the mentality of “sure, I would love to do that, but I can’t. I don’t have the money. I don’t have the time. I don’t know how to start.” Then my husband finally made me realize that I was selling myself short (thank God for him). We are all capable of doing what we want and living out our passion, it’s just that most people always have an excuse as to why they don’t go after it. If you really believe in yourself, and you’re willing to work for it, then it’s absolutely possible. It’s not going to happen overnight, it’s going to require a lot of hard work and sacrifice, but if you want to do something, do it. Don’t hold back. Where there is a will, there IS a way. I’m not saying you have to quit your job and rush into your passion, but maybe start small, like doing it on the side and just see where it takes you. You never know what it will bring out of you and what it will do for your life.
Many of these learnings are fairly new revelations for me, and that’s partly why I feel like my whole sense of who I am has changed within the last year. We are all a work in progress and none of us are perfect, but these learnings have really helped to transform the way I look at life. My hope is that this post will inspire at least one of you to go after what you love, and never care about what anyone thinks. I would love to hear if any of these points speak to you guys also. Please leave me your thoughts in the comments! Thank you guys so much for reading.