23 Things I Learned This Year

So, I turn 24 very soon. As I look back on year 23, I have lived and learned so much. I feel like I’ve transformed so much in the past year. From my first heartbreak to my first real job to my first solo trip, 23 has been a roller coaster. To commemorate this year, I curated a list of 23 things that I learned this year.

  1. Nobody owes you anything.
    • I had to learn this one the hard way. No one owes you love, time, or even respect. The only person who owes you anything is you.
  2. I am capable of loving someone romantically.
    • I honestly did not know if this was possible. Until I met this guy, I did not know if it was possible for me to love anyone romantically. I found everyone boring and predictable, so I couldn’t even begin to really like someone.
  3. It’s okay to be vulnerable.
    • Emotions, in general, are something I rarely show. This is because I feel everyone’s emotions, almost like an empath. Therefore, I used to shut down emotionally not only because I feel everything, but because being vulnerable opens you up to being hurt. Do you know what’s worse than being vulnerable? Opening up to someone and giving them the tools to hurt you. However, I’ve learned that vulnerability can also lead to amazing, beautiful experiences.
  4. I am enough.
  5. I love me.
  6. I love me more than I thought.
    • No really, almost narcissism, but not. It’s a “very selfish, responsible, able to give and receive, I know what I want and I will work to get it, keep positive people around me” love.
  7. Don’t confuse love with strong like.
    • Which is easier said than done. We want and desire love so much, that we attach ourselves to anything that slightly resembles it. In my experience, I liked someone so much that I genuinely thought I loved him. Maybe I did *shrugs*.
  8. Just because he said he wouldn’t hurt you, it doesn’t mean he won’t.
    • People lie. People give you false promises. Sure, he didn’t intend to hurt you, but he still did it anyway. Intentions don’t mean shit when all you can do is cry because the pain is so deep. Remember that people are flawed and things will get better.
  9. Learn from your mistakes.
  10. This one is similar to #9. Forgive and forget, but always learn.
    • When I was wronged by someone that I trusted, I held onto the pain caused by their actions. Once I forgave them, remembering what they did triggered all the hurt that I “forgave” them for. It was like I was hurt allll over again. However, once I re-assessed the situation, my actions, their actions, I could learn from the experience and grow from it.
  11. You, even you, can fall for bomb dick.
    • It happened. The dick was great. I latched on longer than necessary. There will be more bomb dick, hopefully with a bomb ass person attached to it.
  12. It’s okay not to be okay. *Cue “Who You Are” by Jessie J*
  13. I fell in love, not nearly as quickly as I fell out of it.
  14. Closure is a made-up concept. Stop expecting it.
    • It’s time we let go of this thing called “closure”. The relationship is over, for whatever reason, and you’ll just have to deal with it. I remember wanting closure so bad, that I waited for him to come back to me, just to figure out why he left me. I wait for no one. When I finally got his answer, I was livid! His reason was such bullshit. I could have come up 25 better reasons as to why he left me. I might have to write on this topic another time. For now, closure is dumb. Get back to loving yourself and move on.
  15. Transform your fear into confidence.
    • I learned that energies could never be destroyed, only transformed. Think of it like this, you are miserable and you hate your job, but you need it. So either you go find a new job or you make the best of your time there and find new ways to enjoy it. This is how I have been approaching fear, or at least trying to. Literally taking the very feeling of fear, in my case fear of failure, and using that feeling to motivate me to do the very thing I fear. What’s the worst thing that could happen if I do what I fear? I might fail. I might not. But you never know unless you take that leap.
  16. Traveling every few months keeps me fulfilled.
    • Taking some time away every few months keeps my skin clear and my soul enriched.
  17. Saving is a necessity.
    • What’s worse than being broke? Being broke with bougie ass tastes, but also being broke with bougie ass tastes and a desire to be financially savvy. My little rainy day fund has come in handy not just when I was in a financial bind, but also when I saw something that I really liked that was also a little expensive #treatyoself.
  18. Stay away from sugar.
    • About a year ago, I was diagnosed with prediabetes which meant ending my love affair with sugar. It was hard, but VERY worth it.
  19. Who you are is who you want to be with a little tweaking.
    • Sometimes we want to change or be different people, but we fail to realize that the person we desire to be is already here. We just have to do a little soul work to be him/her.
  20. Happiness is a choice.
  21. Love yourself first, before you accept the love of anyone else.
  22. It’s okay to explore your sexuality. Own your sexuality.
  23. Listen to the voice inside of you. You know yourself better than anyone else.