25 Things I Learned In My 25th Year

In a week I'll turn 26, and for some reason, I've been dreading it. I'm not the kind of person who forgets or doesn't celebrate birthdays - they have always been a big deal in my house - yet something about turning another year older perpetuated the feeling of being behind most of my peers. But this last week my perspective changed, and rather than looking ahead into 26 with a negative lens, I'm moving into my next year more thankful than ever. 

To celebrate this change of heart, I've compiled a list of the top 25 things I learned this year. Twenty-five was an interesting year - I began thinking I knew the direction my life was heading and felt pretty secure about where I was and what I was doing. But about halfway in, all the questions resurfaced as the unexpected showed up and rearranged my neat little plans. And I'm here to say I'm all the better for it. 

  1. I learned making plans is overrated. 
  2. I learned the importance of vulnerability and barring my own heart process in front of others, no matter how deep or painful. 
  3. I learned there's no "right" answer or direction. 
  4. I learned how to pack for 3 months in one backpack. 
  5. I learned everyone is messy; we're all just looking for people to jump in the boat with us. 
  6. I learned that once I put my mind to something, I can actually do it. 
  7. I learned God has my best in mind. ALWAYS. 
  8. I learned how to not look like a total loser in the weight room at the gym. 
  9. I learned following the crowd typically isn't life-giving or fruitful, nor does it accomplish what I want. 
  10. I learned how to register and start my own business. 
  11. I learned I enjoy flexibility but really need accountability. 
  12. I learned how much I need a calendar or planner (and that I actually need to look at it everyday). 
  13. I learned I have some really great people in my life. 
  14. I learned how much I love being on mission in my daily life. 
  15. I learned deeper is better than faster or longer. 
  16. I learned how to use Adobe InDesign. 
  17. I learned airline mile points are a real thing (S/O to American Airlines for the free flight last month!). 
  18. I learned settled is better than anxious. 
  19. I learned how to make royal icing sugar cookies. 
  20. I learned I still haven't outgrown my music video days... in fact, I think I might be still in my prime. ;) 
  21. I learned options may be a great thing, but only God opens and closes doors. 
  22. I learned the trick to wearing pajamas to work each morning: working from home. 
  23. I learned how to enjoy the simple, even when it means you're stretched really, really thin. 
  24. I learned curating your own social media content is challenging, but the trick is finding a balance between strategy, spontaneity, and real life. 
  25. I learned Good is coming. 

Cheers to 26!