The 5 Most Important Things I Learned by 25

In case any of you didn’t know, I turned 25 just this morning (8:30 a.m. to be exact) and wow, what a whirlwind it has been so far.

I have been dreading this birthday for a while now to be quite honest. I had this notion that it was going to symbolize the end of something; my youth, my innocence, my hopes and dreams. Or that it was going to trigger an existential crisis (LOL).

But it has turned out to feel like quite the opposite

I’ve been doing some reflecting on the most important things I have learned and felt like maybe this was a good time to share them. So here we go, the 5 most important things I learned by 25.

1. It’s ok to fail

And you will, numerous times. But trust me, they will all be lessons.

I spent so long looking back on my mistakes and failures and feeling like they were going to define who I was. I thought that they made me a failure, made me less lovable, less successful. When in reality, all they did was teach me things. They taught me what it feels like to fail and how to pick myself back up when that happens. They made me stronger. And they will make you stronger.

So get out there and fail, my darling, because one day you will look back and be grateful that you did.

2. Never stop dreaming

I thought big dreams were only for little kids or highschoolers going off to seek out their place in the world. But you know what? Everyone can have dreams. And its never too late to have new ones.

Maybe that dream you had when you were 18 didn’t work out so well *points to self*. And that’s totally ok. Dream up a new dream and find a way to chase it.

Life is more fun when you have something to look forward to.

3. Take care of your body and mind

We only get one body in this life, so take good care of it. Feed it well, exercise it, take it to the doctor when it gets sick.

And most importantly, TAKE CARE OF YOUR MENTAL HEALTH.

Thankfully, this has become so much less stigmatized and it’s ok to talk about our mental health. Just remember that your brain is part of that body of yours and it needs to be nourished all the same.

And always remember that if you are struggling with any kind of mental health illness, please reach out and ask for help, it is always waiting for you. If we are close friends or family, don’t hesitate to talk to me personally. I am always here to talk if you need it.

4. Say what you feel when you feel it

*Deep breath*

This has probably been one of the toughest lessons for me to learn, and I am still not perfect at it. I work on it everyday and I will keep working on it for the rest of my life.

It is so important to say what we feel. And not only to say it, but to say it when we feel it. Life is way too short in some instances and I will be the first to admit that I don’t want to live with any regrets. Its going to be hard sometimes, or maybe uncomfortable, or awkward. But find the words as best you can. And just say them.

We are not always going to be lucky enough to get a second chance to say what we feel. And remember, as we are getting older so are our parents and our siblings and our cousins. Tell them you love them as often as you can. ❤

5. “Stay close to people that feel like sunshine”

I found this quote a while back and it makes me think of certain people in my life.

If you have people in your life that feel like sunshine, then you know exactly what I am talking about.

To me, these people are mostly my family and a few other special individuals that just make me feel whole. And they make me feel like the best version of myself when I am with them. Most importantly, they feel like the sun; warm and loving and bright.

Keep these people close to you. They will keep away the evil in the world, or they will fight it alongside you.


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I have no doubt that I have so much more to learn from the world,

So here’s to the 25 wonderful years I’ve had so far, and to many many more.

Thank you to anyone and everyone that has played even a small role in my life up until this point. You are amazing and I love you all.

Xoxo, Haley

 

Thanks for reading.

 

 

 

Wanderlust

I’ve wanted to travel for as long as I can remember.

Even just taking family trips as a child, I knew it would be something I would keep doing as I got older. Of course, as I grew up, my dreams grew with me. Going across the state, or making short trips into the bordering states of New York eventually wasn’t enough for me. I craved more. I wanted to see so much more.

When I was in elementary school my parents took my siblings and I to Florida and it was the first time I ever flew on a plane. It wasn’t until I was 22 years old that I flew again when my sister and went with my dad to myrtle beach for a long weekend.

It wasn’t just the flying that gave me wanderlust. It was the whole experience. Being in a new place and seeing all the sights, the people and the way they dressed made me excited and lively.

As I finished college, I considered the prospect of traveling the world and seeing all the places I had yet to see. But of course, straight out of college I had no money, a dead end job and loan payments on the horizon. So I put my travel dreams on the back burner and tried to live a happy, meaningful life anyway.

Fast forward and I’m 24, not so fresh out of college, living in Brooklyn and working (another!) dead end job as I transition to the city. The loan payments knock at my door every month, along with my outrageous New York City rent making my bank account grumble as the life is drained from it.

But my visceral need to travel is still there, poking away at me everyday, waiting to be brought to fruition. And the realization I’ve come to in these last few years…

If not now, when?

I’ve always felt (and forgive me if not everyone thinks this way, it’s just my opinion) that there is this whole world out there for us to explore and we would be doing ourselves a disservice if we didn’t try to see as much of it as we could in the little time we have on this earth. I don’t believe we were meant to see a tiny sliver of what life has to offer, but that we are supposed to embrace how others live, what they create and how they love. Only in doing so can we finally learn what our purpose is in this life.

That’s just my outlook on the subject. Roast me in the comments or tell me why you agree or disagree.

So where do I go from here?

I don’t have any concrete plans just yet, but there are some definitely in the works. I’m doing my research and reading lots of blogs about solo travel, tips for first-time travelers and the best destinations to go.

If you or anyone you know has done some traveling (or maybe writes a travel blog!) and has tips to share, comment on this post or send me a message using my contact page.

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Thanks for reading!