1. You’ll make the same mistakes more than once, but that’s okay. You’re a work in progress. Sometimes, you just need to keep learning the same lesson over and over again until it sticks.
2. You don’t have to keep doing things out of obligation. If you want to go home earlier than everyone else or skip out on plans entirely, follow your own lead. Nobody gets to have a say in how you spend your time, so use it in ways that serve you best.
3. People will walk in and out of your life like a revolving door. Some will stay close to you for a long time; others will drift off and disappear. This says nothing about you, how lovable you are or how valuable your friendship is to others. It’s simply the way things go.
4. Labelling yourself will only make your process of self-discovery more complicated. If you’re growing, you’re also evolving. You’re setting new goals, acquiring new interests and developing new aspects of your personality. Proclaiming to the world that you’re an extrovert, or someone who loves solitude, or someone who hates monogamy, will make it harder for you to accept new versions of yourself. Life experiences will change you – let them.
5. Stand with your back straight, your head up and your eyes forward. Even when you feel small and invisible, take up space. Even when you don’t feel strong, stand like the pillar of strength you want to be. Keep your feet planted firmly on the ground through all the uncertainty. You’re tougher than you give yourself credit for. Remember that as you make your way through the world.
6. You’re the only one who is truly in control of what’s possible in your life. What we perceive as barriers to our success are often just excuses in disguise. Many of these barriers aren’t external forces holding us back, but internal narratives we create to keep us tethered to our comfort zones. Success demands risk and sacrifice. Instead of clinging to excuses, be honest with yourself – maybe you’re just not ready to vacate your comfort zone right now. Give yourself permission to not be ready and feel relief from that. It feels good.
7. Take note of your judgements about other people, circumstances and situations you find yourself in. Before you believe them, reflect on them. Think about which part of you they came from, how it felt in your heart as they bubbled up to the surface. Question your thoughts and whether or not they’re doing you any good. As author and spiritual innovator Byron Katie would ask, “Who would you be without that thought?” Would you be happier? Would you feel lighter? Would you be more free?
8. Doing nothing is just as good as doing it all, if not better. Doing nothing, peacefully and comfortably, is better than doing it all with chaotic and unsettled energy. Negotiate your expectations of yourself daily. Check in with yourself daily. Until you can do nothing with complete ease, doing it all will never feel like enough.
9. Pay close attention to how often you reach for your phone. How much content are you consuming in a single minute, for absolutely no reason? Can you eliminate the process of looking at things that don’t serve a healthy purpose? Check your phone to feel connected and inspired. Otherwise it becomes a vacuum, sucking up your time and consciousness.
10. Your love is essential. It’s the greatest gift you can give to those that mean the most to you. When you want to fight, when you feel fed up or when you’re in pain, remember that all they want is to be loved and noticed. You were part of their best memories and the warmest emotions that their hearts have ever felt. You touch their soul. Whenever possible, choose to love instead of choosing to fight, brush them off or criticize. That way, you’ll never regret your words.