Tuesday, 21 April 2015

8 things I've learnt in my 20's // Musings

'Your twenties are a time of exploration, not certainty. Get out and try, don't sit at home thinking you should already know' - Unknown
life lessons

Your twenties. A time for revelations and realisations that are set to change the way you view life. Be prepared for lots of 'been-there-done-that' type stories, ground breaking revelations and a strange occurrence called 'becoming an adult'. Adult whaaaatt?? Yeah. I know. To embrace this, here is a list of eight life lessons I've learnt while being in my twenties that I feel obliged to pass on.

1. Bringing down others is a waste of your time
It's a waste of your time, energy and talents to focus on bringing down others or trying to elevate yourself by pulling down others. Elevating yourself doesn't need to be done at the expense of others and in a world that is seemingly riddled with envy, hate and backstabbing, it's important that we take the individual responsibility to make sure that we're not contributing to this.  The success of others should be celebrated and congratulated.  This doesn't mean that your own won't come. It will. Because 'as big as the sky is, I've never seen two birds collide. There's room enough for all of us.'

2. Become a kick-ass host
What I've learnt is that I just really, really, really like the idea of being the hostess with the most-est. I just wanna be that person that  organizes dinner parties or barbecues with fun filled activities in the summer that your friends won't forget for years to come. Hmm, I'm working on it. 

3. Skincare first, make-up second. 
I have a love/hate relationship with make-up. I spend too much money on it and I do enjoy wearing it despite my questionable make-up skills. But, at the end of the day I still wipe off my make up and have to acknowledge my skin underneath. So deal with that first; take the time to become comfortable in the skin you have and work out a decent skincare regime to take care of it. I've learnt that focusing on having good skin is better than using make-up to cover everything up. I mean, once you've got the skincare down, then you can play around with make-up and wear as much or as little as you want.  

4. Knowing your worth when it comes to guys, friends and colleagues. 
'Once you learn how much you're worth, you'll stop giving people discounts' - a tumblr quote I came across that has now been engraved on my mind and I suggest you do the same.  Whether it's knowing that it's ok to say no, learning to walk away from toxic relationships or just understanding that you are worth diamonds and stars, it's important to know your worth and walk away from anyone that doesn't value this.

5. Pay attention to your health
Regular exercise and eating good, wholesome, non-processed food??! Pffftt ain’t nobody got time for that right, right?!  We’re so used to hearing the importance of eating healthy and doing regular exercise that we sort of tune out when our doctor mentions it for the tenth time. Well, I did anyway. I've learnt that health is one of those things that we don’t really notice until it starts slipping away, then we start frantically clutching at straws trying to keep it as it was before, something that's certainly happened to me in the past. It has since made me a little more cautious of what I'm eating and how active I'm being. 

6. Practice honesty, kindness and compassion
Treating everyone and yourself with a basic level of honesty, kindness and compassion is important. It may not be reciprocated and you may not feel like it all the time, but learning to live with honesty, kindness and compassion as one of your main principles in life really can turn your life around. It's so exhausting to be consumed by hate and unnecessary drama all the time. Rise above it, chill, relax and focus on the good people around you.

7. Kit your wadrobe out with essentials
LBD's, plain tops, a killer red dress, a comfortable pair of black heels, a good pair of jeans, you know, the usual. I've learnt that once you have the basics down, you can build, develop and find your own individual style from there.  

8. Have the courage to embrace yourself
Stop hiding from yourself, being embarrassed by who you are or what you like, and embrace your personality, your interests, your opinions; embrace everything about you.

What things had you learnt so far?

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Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Three important lessons on accepting your flaws // Musings

'I myself am made entirely of flaws, stitched together with good intentions' 
- Augusten Burroughs

Accepting your flaws, Henry Kissinger

Like every young teen, I went through many awkward stages and spent way too much time concerned about the things I didn't like about myself.  All I could think about were these flaws, both real and imagined, that I started to define myself by.  A mix of comparing myself to others and a realisation that I was not, to my dismay, the walking definition of perfection, meant that I spent more time than necessary focused on the bad rather than being happy with the good. I wanted to smooth down the rough edges as I feared the day that someone would seriously call me out on my quietness or start a sentence with 'you know what, you’re not very...' Or 'sometimes you can be a bit too...'  Wanting to work on your flaws is perfectly fine for the purpose of personal growth. But I was starting to define myself by them, wanting to be flawless in the eyes of others and was quick to disregard my own opinions. In my haste to become something I thought I should be, I overlooked three very important things. 

Firstly, Everyone has flaws. Every single person you interact with or admire is flawed in more ways than one. So having flaws doesn't mean that you're the odd one out, it simply means that you're just like everyone else. I don't know if that brings you comfort or not but it's a fact. For everything you admire about someone else, there's a whole list of flaws and past mistakes they battle with, same as you. 

Secondly, accepting and working on your flaws doesn't happen overnight.  This one took a while for me to understand and I spent many years trying to understand why I couldn't just shake off my shyness overnight. It takes time to either fully accept something about yourself and be content with it or to work on it to the point where it’s no longer an issue.  Only you can fully determine whether or not your flaws need to be worked on or accepted and only you can do this.  Others can offer advice or comforting words, of course, but true change or acceptance comes only from our thoughts and actions.

Thirdly, YOU ARE NOT DEFINED BY YOUR FLAWS! Yes you may have to work on them and yes you may have to just come to terms with them, but they don't sum up who you are as a person. I mean firstly, people are complex. We can be good and bad and flawed and perfect all at the same time.  Defining yourself and what you can offer the world simply by your flaws diminishes your worth and doesn't offer much else. So for every flaw you identify,  pick out a non-flaw; a personality trait that you're proud of or a part of your physical appearance that makes you think 'hot daaaamn.' This balances out the scale and stops you from putting all your focus on the negatives. 

What lessons have you learnt about accepting your flaws?

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