16 lessons learnt in 2016.

1. it is okay to not feel okay. you are far too valuable to let suppression mold your existence. be aware of yourself and of the chaos of life and allow yourself to feel. you are human after all. acceptance is the first step to change. 

2. it is never to late to begin again; to rethink, to regrow, to redefine. the universe is a raging ocean of unlimited opportunities, let its waves carry you to new places and embrace the uncertainty of its current. let go of toxic people. of calamitous pasts. of bad habits. accept what cannot be changed, but acknowledge that the future is yours to create. remember, you are always one decision away from changing your path completely. 

3. be kind. be gentle. be compassionate. don’t be an asshole. it’s not cool, it never was, and it never will be. there’s already too much pain in this world as it is, do your best to bring positivity into it. lend a hand to those in need without waiting for something in return. 

4. relationships aren’t perfect. generic, cookie-cutter, fairytale romances are for disney movies. relationships are effort and struggle just as much as they are laughter and love. they are sleepless nights and tear-stained cheeks just as much as they are warm kisses and tightly laced fingers. committing to someone means being ready to turn the world upside down to find them even a tiny sliver of happiness. some days you will only feel like giving them 10% while they give you 90%, and sometimes it will be the other way around. as long as there is 100% love, it will be okay. you will still be be worth it to the right person, even at your worst. 

5. appreciate those around you whom you love. don’t wait till things fuck up to tell them how much they mean to you, don’t let the power of regret be stronger than gratitude. hug your loved ones tighter each day. 

6. people. will. always. talk. shit. some have mouths that are nothing more than automatic faeces vending machines. they will spread rumors, let them. you have no control over what others think and say, but you do have control over how you react to them. be mature and realise it’s not worth your time to worry about them. 

7. speak your mind and tell people how you feel. it may be terrifying in some aspects, but refreshing in others. forever is not a concept, time is of the essence. let your thoughts be heard while you have the chance, before the world leaves you behind.

8. find what you’re truly good at, what you enjoy and pursue it. if you want to be a writer, write. if you want to be an astrophysicist/ neurosurgeon/ stripper, go for it. never let anyone else’s perception of ‘success’ hinder your journey. you don’t have to explain to anyone what you want to do with your life and the only thing stopping you from achieving your goals is you. 

9. educate yourself. not just through school, but really educate yourself. find the right books, the right music, the right films. find the right people, and learn from them and grow alongside them. read the newspaper at least once a week, its not as boring as you may think. 

10. not everything is life is predictable or calculated. you will still get pimples every now and then even if all you consume is leafy green vegetables, and you won’t get 100s on every single test you take. it’s okay. adapt. learn to loosen up a little. life has no handbook on how to be lived.

11. crying is not a sign of weakness. it shows that you are strong enough to express your emotions. you don’t have to hold the weight of the world on your shoulders all the time, its okay to put down your load for a while. cry a river if you have to, if it makes you feel less burdened. also, its good for your skin. just an added bonus.

12. pain is relative. don’t underestimate someone’s struggle just because you find it hard to understand. be sympathetic and be kind, everyone is going through something difficult. 

13. self care is important, both physical and mental. eat healthy, catch up on lost sleep, exercise daily and drink enough water. make time for your hobbies or try something different like learning a new language or a musical instrument. spend some quiet time alone, go on long walks in pretty parks or decorate your room. pamper yourself too; take a scented bath. exfoliate. use the fancy perfume. wear the cute underwear. every day is special. 

14. count your blessings. appreciate the little things and be grateful for what you have. many of us have it horrible, its true. but where there is loss, there is gain. complain less, show gratitude more, and you will be more peaceful indeed.

15. love seldom, but love deeply. choose the people you give yourself to carefully and make sure they deserve you. and once you are sure, give yourself to them fully. dive into the feeling, embrace it wholeheartedly. loving takes courage, but don’t be afraid to take a shot in the dark with it. life is too short to be doubtful.

16. take a moment to stop in this fast-paced world and take everything in. wake up early to watch the sunrise, watch the sky collapse into itself in a myriad of colors; bruises of purple and blue amalgamating with hues of orange and red. let the sounds of the waking birds fill your ears and the day’s first sun rays kiss your skin. breathe in. breathe out. you are alive. you are here. the world is beautiful. make the most of it. 

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