22 Random, Important Things I’ve Learnt Throughout My 8030 Days on Earth So Far

By Ilya Katrinnada

As of today, I have lived for a total of 8030 days Alhamdulillah :)

On my birthday last year, I wrote a list of 21 things I would say to my younger self. I think that it was a good way for me to reflect on the things I’ve learnt so far but hadn’t, up until that moment, gotten the chance (and will) to put in words. So I’d like to do something similar today.

The past one year since writing that has seen a lot of changes. I’m learning something new almost every day, which I am incredibly grateful for and I hope that I’ll look back at this post in future to remind myself of these daily lessons. As I’m writing this, I don’t have a set list of things that I’m going to include in this post so I’m coming up it as I go along. I anticipate that there will be some things that I’m comfortable sharing on this platform, and others which I’d rather talk about in person to people I’m close to.

So here it goes!

Dear Ilya,

  1. The people whose opinions really, truly matter are your parents. When you’re in a dilemma, ask them for their thoughts and permission. (They’ll probably say yes anyway.)
  2. When it comes to confidence, fake it till you make it.
  3. I don’t know why it took you so long to embrace your creative side but now that you’re increasingly integrating that part into your life, do your best to develop it and let it ~flourish~.
  4. When your mind is cluttered, share your thoughts through whatever means possible at that time.
  5. Accept that you are a naturally nervous person (I don’t know if that’s the right phrase to use, but yeah you know you get nervous/scared over everything). Whenever it bothers you, translate the nervousness into excitement.
  6. You actually don’t look as dead to other people as you think you do L O L keep up the smiles. It makes people’s day, and more importantly, brightens up your mood too!
  7. Indeed, hydration never takes a vacation. Please drink enough water.
  8. As cliche as it sounds, what you look like on the inside matters a whole lot more than how you appear on the outside. Remember when Boonaa Mohammed said, “If the whole world was blind, how many people would you impress?” So work on your character (and stop worrying so much about your lack of make-up skills lel).
  9. If your education does not make you a better person — more kind, empathetic, humble — then you’re not doing it right.
  10. If your religion does not make you a better person, then you’re not doing it right.
  11. If something or someone is important enough, you will make time for it/him/her.
  12. Remember when Ustaz Deros said that everyone has different starting points and ending points?
  13. Probably nothing that you do is going to change the world, but it is important that you do it anyway.
  14. Constantly realign your intentions.
  15. It is true that if you do something for someone hoping to receive something else in return, then you are wasting your time because whatever you get in return is never going to be enough.
  16. It is true that if you do something without thinking (too much (it’s hard not to think about the end aye)) about the outcome, then you’d feel like every second spent on it was a second well-spent even if nothing comes to fruition.
  17. Kanye was right when he said, “I was never really good at anything except for the ability to learn.”
  18. There are so many other things that you can do besides scrolling through Facebook/Instagram.
  19. Read widely.
  20. Sometimes you just have to suck it up and do what you have to. You’ll thank yourself later.
  21. “Take your broken heart, make it into art.” — Meryl Streep
  22. I appreciate
    the times my heart asks, “Are you
    not afraid of death?”

You’ll be fine InsyaAllah :)

Lots of love,

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