Happy birthday to me.
Happy birthday to me.
Happppyyyy birthday to me!
Did you figure out what day it is yet??
Thats right. Its my birthday, and I absolutely adore my birthday. This year, I thought I would do something difference, and do a little reflection on some valuable life lessons I have learned. If any of the lessons offend you in some way, please see lesson #1.
- Your purpose in life is NOT to make others happy. Focus on YOURSELF and your own happiness.
- Family is everything. this includes both your biological family, but also the ones you have created through friendship.
- Give without expecting anything return – this has been a hard one for me to learn over the years.
- Be nice and be kind – it is your only sure ticket to success.
- Give second chances – but don’t be too lenient with your chances. Maintain self-integrity, and know when to walk away.
- Some friendships, even 17-year-long childhood friendships, WILL die. That is life, and you WILL make new and better friends who value YOU for who YOU are today, and not who you were when you were 6.
- Take chances that seem too out there i.e. move across the country if you really want to.
- Read MORE.
- Money doesn’t mean success or happiness. Instead, focus on doing work that makes your soul sing.
- Anxiety is real, and it makes you do weird things like avoid people, procrastinate on studying, prioritize tasks that are mundane. Tackle your anxiety if you can – some days its okay to let it run its course.
- Failing an exam is not failing in life. It is simply that: failing ONE exam.
- Ignorance is NOT bliss but rather sheer stupidity. Learning never ends, even when school does. Whether it is for your profession, or your hobby – learning and education is a lifelong journey. Edify yourself, and open up your mind to the world.
- Travel is the best teacher. The life lessons, moral and character strength, knowledge about different cultures and nuances you learn while travelling can be taught by nothing else.
- Exercise will make you feel better about yourself MENTALLY. Yes, you may end up looking kickass – but your mental health will shift and your head space will become a safer and more positive space when you exercise. Take care of your body to take care of your mental health.
- It is absolutely okay to not diet and eat what you want when you want – in moderation. We are human, and human beings have cravings and deprivation only makes the cravings worse.
- Set BIG goals for yourself and believe you can do them. Visualize yourself achieving those goals and what that will look like. Before I even started my PhD, I knew what I wanted to wear on my convocation day, what that day would look like, feel like etc. And when I got to that day, of course I wore something different than I had imagined, but it felt like I had known what it was going to be like all along!
- Letting go is hard- but it needs to be done for not only your sanity, but everyone else’s sanity.
- Asking for help does NOT make you weak. In fact, it means you have insight and awareness and makes you a stronger person.
- Alone time (away from your spouse, kids, friends) is GOOD – it doesn’t mean you are socially awkward or a recluse. Rather, it is an opportunity to recharge and recuperate, so you can be your best self in those social situations.
- Our internal self talk or voice can be harsh AF and it is a constant struggle to tone the harshness down. Be kind to yourself.
I mean, I can probably go on and on because I love talking.. but I wanted to stop with my absolutely “woke” life lessons, and tell YOU that I want to thank you. I started this page and instagram community in truly what was a dark time for me. Right around my 25th birthday, I lost 4 extremely close friendships. My ex-friends are all alive, and I hope well, but our friendships did not die. They ended because of me to a large extent. It has taken me 5 years to work through that, and accept responsibility for my actions. Ofcourse, both parties have a part to play in things going south, and initially I was in the head space of only blaming. I have worked really hard on myself to get to where I am, and a part of that has been learning how to be vulnerable again in new friendships. I have been able to do that more and more thanks to the kindness I have received on here, and the acceptance and love I have gotten from YOU. I have absolutely no words to express my gratitude. The internet can be a mean place. Trolls are abundant – but somehow, I have been fortunate to have far and few of these instances.
So, today I want to thank you – for showing up, supporting me, being kind to me, and providing me with a way to heal. I have tears in my eyes as I type this, but truly, my life is SO different (all in good ways) BECAUSE I started this little journey. As someone wise said “No one supports you like your internet friend” – and that my friends is YOU.
Lots of love,