things to live by

I’m a person who loves lists. They make me feel organized and like I have somewhat of a grasp on this hectic life. Throughout my 17 years, I’ve learned some things that have made all the difference in the world to me. So, of course, I compiled those things into a list. Here’s the list that I keep very close to my heart. None of these things are earth shattering, new ideas, but hey, maybe it could be a nice reminder. We all need reminders sometimes.

  1. Follow your heart. Always. Sometimes it may lead to heartache. Sometimes it may cause you to crash and burn. But, 100% of the time, you’ll grow.
  2. Tell the people you love that you love them.. and tell them often. It always takes a local tragedy or a sad Facebook article to make us put our lives in perspective and realize just how short our time is on this Earth. But.. what if we lived everyday with a grateful heart? If you love someone, tell them. If you are thankful for someone, tell them. Rest your head on your pillow each night confident in the fact that your loved ones know just how loved they are.
  3. Never apologize for being who you are. There is literally not another person on this planet like you. You were fearfully and wonderfully made. God crafted you so uniquely and intricately. He knows every hair on your head, every thought in your brain, and every feeling in your heart. He was so meticulous in making you. He would never apologize for any part of his creation, so why should you?
  4. When you go out to eat with your friends, don’t touch your phone. Whenever my friends and I go out to eat, we make a phone stack in the middle of the table. This has become one of my favorite habits of ours. With technology, real life connections have become so hard to maintain. By adding this one thing into your life, you’ll come to realize that the people sitting across from you are so much better than any notification that could pop up on your phone.
  5. Spend time by yourself. Learn to be content in isolation. Learn to be detached. Don’t look at it as being alone; look at it as getting to know yourself. Spend some time to get to know your heart. That “alone” time can be a game changer for how you approach life.
  6. Realize it’s okay to not always be okay. You don’t have to keep it all together all the time. Bottling it in never helped anyone. Confide in someone with your heart. I promise, you’re not a burden and I promise, it will make you feel better. We’re all broken people and we all have our days. “We’re all just walking each other home.”
  7. Don’t compare. Please realize how awesome you are. Trust me, I know how hard it is to try to stop comparing yourself to the people you see on Instagram or the people you pass in the hallways. But.. God didn’t create you so that you would question your making. Seek yourself through Him and embrace who you find.
  8. Step out of your comfort zone. You were created for a purpose, but there’s something that lies between you and that purpose.. a risk. God has a perfectly crafted plan for your life; the question is- are you willing to do what it takes to get there? You grow in the times you take a step outside of your comfort zone. Start praying to be uncomfortable. It sounds weird, but I promise, it will change your life.
  9. Be genuine. No one likes someone who is fake. Stay true to who you are. Embrace every weird quirk.
  10. Forgive… and then keep forgiving. Forgive yourself, forgive others, and never put a cap on how many times you’ll extend that grace. There are too many burdens in life already, don’t add more to yourself by holding grudges. Life is way too short to live with that kind of heavy heart.