If you title a piece with a timely rap pun, it's retention, relevance and value automatically skyrocket a ridiculous amount, right? Right!
A few weeks ago, it hit me how close it was to my 27th birthday. As someone who doesn't love birthdays or do much for them, it may seem odd that so many of my pieces are framed around this milestone, but birthdays are the most direct way to measure timing, growth and other themes that are constantly floating around in the tangled web of thoughts in my head.
As I started to think about the closely approaching date, the web of thoughts became more complex. Besides thinking, "oh G-d, I am about to be in my upper 20s S.O.S. help me," I thought about how many lessons I have learned in the recent years and how much I have grown.
Self-growth is, of course, a process, but as I reflected on the recent years, it became clear how countless lessons seemed to shape my progression from early 20s to late 20s. Although many of these lessons or life guidelines are things I am still working on putting into practice, acknowledgement and awareness is better than nothing, so here are my 27 lessons to countdown the 27(ish) days until I am 27.
1. Your top responsibility is to you.
2. It's possible for even the busiest person to find five minutes to prioritize themself every day.
3. Don't underestimate the healing powers of green vegetables.
4. On the other hand, don't forget about the therapeutic powers of your favorite comfort foods (chicken fingers, mac 'n cheese and pizza -- I am talkin' about y-o-u)
5. There are very, very few benefits to being passive aggressive.
6. "Talk less, smile more" is a much needed mantra (Thanks, Lin!)
7. Family (and the people who are basically family) over everything.
8. There are very few problems that a good game of baseball can't temporarily distract you from, even if it's only for a few hours.
9. Sometimes, you need to have a lot of bad relationships (whether it's romantic, friend, or other) to realize the power of good ones.
10. Being outside can be the greatest medicine.
11. Working out is not as bad as you think it is if you find something that you can throw your energy into and create a temporary place of solitude for yourself. (Who ever thought I would say this?)
12. Pushing yourself beyond your comfort zone does wonders.
13. Communication is (major) key in every situation.
14. Listen to your gut. Most of the time, it's right.
15. Take (or chew) your vitamins (no shame -- gummy vitamins rock!)
16. Listen to your mother. Sometimes.
17. When in doubt, binge-watch a TV show (or finish a TV show you started binge watching three years ago … to each their own)
18. Help a stranger. It makes you feel good.
19. Pet every dog you have the opportunity to pet. In the same vein, always talk to people in the elevators who have dogs.
20. Create some kind of art, even if you think it's not good.
21. Clean out your closet. The things you don't want can make someone else's day.
22. Keep in mind the only thing you have control over is yourself.
23. If you have the opportunity to do so, walk instead of driving or riding to your next location. It will feel good.
24. There are three things you should always use: a planner, your Google calendar, and your brain.
25. Drink tons of water. It does your body (and mind) well.
26. The right cup of coffee can make you feel like a superhero.
27. Sleep that extra hour.