Today (August 6th) is my 25th birthday! To celebrate, my mother sent me 25 photos of my family and me, one for each of my years. Going through them got them thinking about my quarter-life milestone and how much I have learned along the way, so I complied a list of 25 things I have learned in my 25 years. Enjoy! These are in no particular order, and please add to the list in the comments below!

  1. Everything happens for a reason. Anything can happen, you can’t plan life, that is the beauty of it. Live in the moment, accept when things go wrong, learn from it, let it go, and move on. Let life take its course and enjoy the ride.
  2. Above all, have confidence. Be proud of who you are and never doubt yourself. Having confidence is the key to success and happiness. If all else, fake it, no one will notice.
  3. If it scares you, it’s probably good for you. The easy way out never got anyone anywhere. Moments of challenge and fear help us grow and progress. Take the plunge, dive, or fall, you will feel fantastic when you’ve conquered your fears.
  4. High expectation is cause for disappointment. My Dad once told me that if you don’t expect anything from a person, they will only pleasantly surprise you. Accept people for who they are. Everyone is unique, don’t compare them to your expectations of yourself.
  5. Your body is sacred. And it’s the only one you get. Eat to live, don’t live to eat, and don’t take your body for granted.
  6. Progress towards perfection. Tackle one thing at a time, and don’t be too hard on yourself. Think of mistakes as lessons learned to move you forward. Perfection is unattainable, so don’t get wrapped up in the details that don’t matter.
  7. Don’t wait for an opportunity, make a break. Know what you want, and create the chance to make it happen. You’ll be surprised how much you can get out of this.
  8. Love yourself. You have no reason not to; you are amazing!
  9. Be yourself. It is human nature to judge others. Understand this, a don’t let it affect who you are and your opinions about yourself. You will be much more happy and successful if you embrace your uniqueness and talents rather than trying to be something other than yourself.
  10. Learn something new every day. Never turn down an opportunity to learn something new, you never know where it may take you.
  11. Pick your battles. Some things aren’t worth fighting for, others are. Choose how to use your energy wisely, you only have so much.
  12. Let it go. You can’t change the past, but you can let the past change your future. Be in control of your future. Don’t regret anything, learn from your mistakes, let it go, and you will be a better, happier person.
  13. Be present. Listen, engage, remember. Give people your undivided attention, they deserve it.
  14. Work hard. Don’t cheat yourself. You only have one chance to be the best you can be. You will never know how great you can be if you give less than 100%.
  15. Own it. This is the best way to recover from an embarrassing situation. We are all human, a little weird, and no one is perfect. Own up to being you and you will be respected.
  16. Embrace your style. Be inspired by others but never take someone else’s style. Everyone is unique, be proud of yourself and flaunt your look. You will be surprised how much positive attention you get no matter what your look is.
  17. Under commit and over deliver. Manage other people’s expectations and you will be able to control how you are perceived.
  18. Don’t complain. Complainers do not progress. Take action, be proactive, and be the change you want to see.
  19. Be open-minded. You never know what could come out of opening your mind to new ideas. This is how life-changing experiences come about.
  20. Let it be. Becuase everything happens for a reason.
  21. Don’t interfere too much, let life take its course.
  22. Say yes. Unless you should say no. Why not? You never know what could come out of saying yes in taking that adventure or trying something new. This is also how life-changing experience come about.
  23. Make yourself happy. You are the only one responsible for your happiness. Don’t blame others, take responsibility, and figure out what you need to do to live a happy life.
  24. Learn to be alone a like it. Get to know yourself. People avoid being alone to avoid confronting their thoughts and ideas. Face your demons and conquer them. There is empowerment to those who know how to enjoy being alone with themselves.
  25. Commit to something. Whether it is a relationship, a diet, or a routine, conquer committing to one thing all the way through to the end. Practice your self-control and willpower, it will make you a much better and stronger person.
  26. Eat cake! Normally, I am vegan, gluten-free, sugar-free, and I can only drink a few types of alcohol, but today I am eating my cake. Every once in a while breaking the rules and indulge, you deserve it!

Also, thank you, Dad, for knocking up Mom 25 years and nine months ago! Great work you guys!

Tags: 2015, 25, A Design Lifestyle, birthday, blog, inspiration, jacqueline, jacqueline palmer, pinterest, quotes, style, women

Originally published at www.adesignlifestyle.net on August 6, 2015.