Turning 22 – What have I learnt in my life so far

Last week it was my 22nd birthday *sings Taylor Swift 22*. Every year when it’s my birthday, I normally get quite emotional or sentimental about the past year and what has changed or where I am in my life at that specific age. I thought to celebrate my birthday in blog style, I’d share 22 things I have learnt so far in my life.

1: Not everyone will like you. Simple as. Instead of trying to please everyone and having hundreds of friends, focus on the people who really matter. There will be people throughout life that you won’t get on with or who won’t like you but that’s okay and that’s normal.

2: Have time to yourself. Having time to myself lets me feel like I can reset my thoughts, think about how I’m feeling or what I want to do in life and my goals. It’s important to have time to sit there and think with yourself about your life.

3: Chocolate is the best food. Ever.

4: Speak up about how you feel. Sometimes being open and honest is a huge challenge for me, however, I need to take that step out my comfort zone and say how I’m really feeling to get my views or message across. Don’t hold in your feelings.

5: Disney films are the best. They make me so happy and whenever I need a pick me up, Disney is the way to go.

6: Walks are truly life changing at times. In a bad mood? Go for a walk. I bet you feel even 1% better afterwards.

7: Every life is different. Stop comparing yourself to every human being you walk past or see online. You are you for a reason and therefore, be the best you, you can be.

8: My boyfriend and friends are my absolute world and I’m beyond grateful to have the people in my life. Right now is the most content I have ever felt in a friendship group.

9: If you feel like you deserve more money in your job, do something about it. This is something I am currently working on and I hope soon, I will be earning what I believe I deserve and should be on.

10: The little things in life really matter. Whether its chocolate, a tv series, a run, a coffee date, the things that feel so simplistic and easy, make such a difference on my mood. We don’t always need to have a huge party or expensive dinner to feel important or happy.

11: Save money. I never saved when I first started working and boyyyyyyy do I regret that now. Save money and your future self will be really appreciative that you did.

12: Change something about your appearance (only if you want to). For years I have debated changing my hair colour. In January I finally dyed it darker and I LOVE IT! Don’t be scared, the risk might be worth it.

13: Have a work, life balance. You need to enjoy your life and not just have a life all about working. Do things that make you happy and take you away from the mindset of business, professionalism, and working.

14: Change your room around. You most likely spend a lot of time in your bedroom, I know I do. Therefore, I’ve found it really beneficial to change my room around whether its a complete change of colour, moving furniture or small things like buying a plant, putting your TV on the wall. It makes me feel refreshed when there is something different about the place I spend a lot of my time. Jazz it up a bit!

15: Think about what you say before you speak. Very important!

16: Treat yourself every so often. Even though I just said to save money, that doesn’t mean to never treat yourself. You work hard, you achieve things, you’re doing well; treat yourself!

17: School years are actually some of the best years of your life. I HATED school when I was there, but now looking back…wow what it a stress free zone. I miss school, treasure it when you’re there.

18: Say yes to more things. I’m a complete anxious mess most of the time and I struggle to do spontaneous things. I’m very much someone who needs to know what I’m doing next weekend about 2 weekends beforehand. I like a plan and it makes me feel better knowing I have a structure to my life. However, what I’ve realised is that sometimes, spontaneous plans are actually really fucking good plans. Say yes to more, try to get out your comfort zone, do different things you wouldn’t normally do.

19: You don’t need to know your whole life plan by the age of 19. Or 22. Or 30. Take life as it comes.

20: Good things will come your way. At times, even right now, I feel like life is constant crap coming my way. There’s always something new to worry about or stress over. But, even if it takes a while to turn around, life will get easier and better. Good things will come to those who are kind, keep going, never give up, who deserve it.

21: Get over the argument or issue as quickly as you can. Don’t drag on something for days on end. Fix the problem, life is too short to be mad and upset.

22: Be kind.

Trying to work out my career route

As someone who throughout school and education, didn’t have a clue what to do in life as their career, I feel and relate to those who don’t know what is right for them. Do we ever know what is right for us? Whether we are 16 at college or 40 years old and worked in 7 different jobs. Finding the career route that suits you, is a really difficult thing to do.

I’m almost 22 and I started the route into my career 3 years ago. I started as an apprentice, which is a route I would recommend over and over again. An apprenticeship route taught me the ways of working life, made me grow up and be mature, gave me skills I will use forever in life; it was the right route for me. 3 years down the line, I sit back and I think ‘is this what you want to do’. I know some of you will read this and probably think about how young I am still and that I have my whole life ahead of me to figure out what career I want in life. However, I am an ambitious person and even though I may only be in my early 20’s, I still feel this pressure and uncertainty on what I want to do.

It’s okay to feel this way. If you feel overwhelmed with options or confusion of what job route you want to take, then that is okay and it’s totally normal and understandable. The world offers SO many different opportunities out there, that its sometimes too much to cope with.

I think something for me that stands out is the amount of effort I put for the amount I get paid. Money isn’t everything, I get that, I understand that you have to be in a job that makes you happy and you enjoy. However, for me personally, money is a big factor to consider because of the life I want to have and to offer to my kids in the future. Some people only do a job because of the money, but I want to find the balance. I want to work in a career that I wake up every morning excited to do, but also have the money in the bank to go Disney World whenever I wanted. This life is probably want most people want to have.

But, how does one even find this life. I feel so motivated and determined to get into a career that is perfect, but my type of perfect. I love the job I do now but I feel like I need more from it. I want to offer more and have more challenges and weirdly I want to feel more stressed and that I’m this really important business women that you watch on TV series absolutely smashing life. I suppose that’s something that has brainwashed me. This vision that TV series and films give off about careers. But, even though it’s unrealistic, I crave that. I crave the hard work, I crave seeing my work making a change, I want to be paid an amount of money which I think I deserve.

When I sit back and think what I want from life, I know that I’m not currently living that life. I know I need to step out my comfort zone and fight for this life I dream of. I need to put myself out there and show people what I can do. And, if you’re feeling the same as me, then you need to do it too. We need to be able to live our life being happy at work, enjoying what we do. I’m not saying everyday at work has to be the best day of my life, but I want to be appreciated more. I want the credit and I want to know I’m doing a good job.

I need to take the next step into finding what my career route is. Trying new things whether I’m 21 or 55. I want to keep learning and understanding new departments of sectors. I want people who feel the same to do this with me. Step out what you feel comfortable with and go for it. The past year has made me realise that life is too short to be debating changing your career or moving to another company, just go for it!

Do we ever know that we are in the right career, in the right stage of our life, working for the right company? Are most of us just winging it and hoping to get through life without being fired? Are some of us holding back our full potential because we are scared? Are we scared of being ourself in the workplace? Can we be earning more money? Can we be living such a happier working life? Maybe so. Finding the right career for me is something I want to make my mission throughout life. I don’t know how to do this, but I’m determined.

I don’t know what life is going to throw at me – none of us do. I don’t even know specifically what job sector I want to be in. My mind changes ideas constantly. All I know is that I want to be in a career that makes a difference. That helps people. Figuring out a career route isn’t easy. It’s one of the hardest things we all have to go through. But we can get there. We can become the career person we want to. With the right attitude, we can do it.

This blog post is more of a jumble of my thoughts right now. But I had to get them off my chest. This may not help anyone, but it’s helped me. Talking about things and realising things and writing them down, it’s helped. Please, if you’re reading this and you need a chat about your career or whatever, comment below. We can talk together, rant together, motivate each other.