20 Things I’ve Learnt Before Turning 20!

20 Things I've Learnt in 20 Years

  1. You can be anything you put your mind too but you may have to work hard, before it gets easier. The past twenty years have been fun, exciting, weird, wonderful, tough and upsetting at times. However, I think I owe a lot to my own determination as I wouldn’t have got this far without wanting to do the things that I do, and most importantly, sticking at them once I start.
  2. Stay organised. This has taken me all of 20 years to get to grips with, and honestly, it still needs an ickle bit of work.
  3. Three hours sleep can be enough! I’ve never really being great at sleeping and it doesn’t take much to drag me to the nocturnal life, however, it is still possible to function on three hours, if not a tiny bit less. But, naps are crucial.
  4. It is possible to choose your friends. If someone doesn’t like you, don’t bother with them and it probably isn’t your fault but theirs. I spent a very long time pleasing people for the sake of being their friend, and it was never worth the effort I put in. We are all different, we are all unique and if you don’t get on with someone, find someone else, someone better.
  5. Be helpful. Helpfulness, kindness and happiness are all things that need to be shared around. If you can help someone, then cease the opportunity; hold a door, carry someone’s bag or give them that missing 50p. Random acts of kindness are always the way to go.
  6. You are never too old to be obsessed with Disney, boy-bands and Happy Meals. Also, side note, eating raw cake mixture is also something you don’t need to grow out of now you are a proper ‘adult’.
  7. Learn to cook, it’s a good life skill that prevents starvation at university. I am still figuring this out, so far I’ve pretty much mastered burning baked beans, eat semi-raw eggs and cooking far too much pasta, every single time.
  8. You don’t need lots of friends, you only need a few that are close. These are the people that allow you to pee with the door open, are prepared for 3am rants about life and are able to finish your sentences before you’ve even began. They are the people who you see after months of no contact, and it seems like yesterday. Moving away from home can be the hardest thing, because family stays but friends often leave. However, those that matter will matter forever and ever and ever.
  9. Family is everything. Family don’t forget or leave you behind. When the world is falling apart, it is your family who are able to stick the pieces back together with a Pritt Stick.
  10. It’s okay to like ‘bad/cheesy’ music. Who cares what music you like? (Side note, singing in the shower is always acceptable. Sing loud and proud, always).
  11. Always go beyond the box, explore, find yourself and try something new! This blog was an outcome of me desperately wanting to just try something, that of course, took an ickle bit of courage because I had never written ‘stuff’ to share before. I joined a writing group whilst at college, and it gave me a weeeee bit of faith in my own writing and ta da, I thought why not?
  12. Colour outside of the lines. Go wild and stay slight crazy. Of course, following instructions is often a wise choice but sometimes its good to be unique and break some rules. Challenge yourself, someone else or something. Taking occasional risks can lead to the best decisions or outcomes.
  13. Don’t be scared to fail or admit defeat. This is definitely something that I have struggled with, as I’m always afraid that even my very best might not be good enough and I know that the feeling of failure can dampen anyone’s mood. Recently, if you’ve been following my posts, you’ll see that I admitted slight defeat when it came to university stress and I didn’t just admit it to myself, but I went onto to share how I was feeling to all of you! The aim, as always, was to help others and let those who are suffering know that they are not the only ones. Accepting something can be the first sign of moving on.
  14. Always eat that extra biscuit. Eat it, enjoy it and you’ll only regret it if you don’t. Same applies to dessert – a sharing chocolate ice-cream sundae with extra chocolate sprinkles, er yes please. Also, crisps for breakfast is totally acceptable whilst you are a teen, perhaps not once one is a fully fledge ‘adult’, who knows? I’m sure I’ll find out.
  15. If you get an opportunity, just go. I have turned down many opportunities throughout the years, mainly because I didn’t want to go alone. But honestly, it will always be worth it even if it’s a bit awkward or tricky to begin with. I went to New York on an Art college trip in 2013, and I have never been more nervous as I didn’t know anyone else going. It turned out to be one of the best trips I’ve ever been on. Similarly, if I hadn’t have taken the plunge last summer I wouldn’t have ended up in London with Unite working on a student guide – an experience I will never forget.
  16. Tequila does not solve a hangover and cider is never a good idea, even if it is for the purpose of a spontaneous mid-day drinking sesh.
  17. Most things are worth the stress. I have spent most days since my GCSEs began stressing over dodgy Maths equations, English essays, Spanish speaking lessons, Art deadlines and everything in-between. The IB at times seemed like the worst decision I ever made and university has forced me to question my own existence from time-to-time. But, I’ve stuck at it because I’m pretty certain I’ll not only be glad, but proud of being able to push on through even when all I wanted to do was give up.
  18. Remember to smile. On murky days it can be hard to just smile, relax and appreciate all what you have. Nothing is ever as bad as it seems, and most things can be solved. So, just smile, and smile like you absolutely mean it.
  19. Be Honest. Be honest with yourself, with others and with everyone.
  20. Be brave, be bold and be you.

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P.S. No.21 – you can NEVER have enough pens (or stationery in general), no matter what your parents tell you.

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About the author

Channon Gray

I'm Channon and yes, it's spelt wrong, but that is interesting right? I'm 23 years young. I like to write, create art and travel. Cornish bumpkin who studied in London then Cambridge. I'm now a Postgraduate Student, Stationery Addict and all-round Life Enthusiast.

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