20 Things I’ve Learned in My Short Little Life

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1. smiles are contagious. Most people are afraid to be the first to tip their hat, but being within two feet of another human being requires your acknowledgement of their existence. We are social creatures and giving a smile to the person next to you will not only give them a boost of confidence, but it will give you a little endorphin promotion as well.
2. you need to fall. I know you’ve heard it a hundred times, but making mistakes is how we learn. This goes for everything. Especially ice skating.
3. you need to be able to laugh at yourself when you fall. I saw a girl fall down the other day and she was so embarrassed and ashamed she ran away. Oh come on girl, the horror of your tumble would have been eight times less had you been able to understand the fact that we make mistakes.
4. i am very outgoing. Some people are not as outgoing, Erin. Don’t take offense to it. Some people may not be as quick to toss that hello around, and if that means I have to always be the first to ask someone how they are doing so be it. Who doesn’t want people to be nice to them?
5. being able to take a walk in someone else’s jeans is crucial for progress. The reason we never get anything done around here often is because nobody gives a crap about things that haven’t hit them home. If we could step into somebody else’s skin every once in a while, guaranteed we’d all be a little better off.
6. political views are settled. How many political discussions have you had or seen that have just turned into arguments? Once we have established our opinions on issues, room for objectivity is trifling. The truth is we cannot put ourselves into two boxes, not even disperse ourselves into a venn diagram, and because we have a need for organization this pisses us off. My advice is to not be so quick to tell someone the box you most associate with because they will assume much about you that is probably not true.
7. people are human. You cannot expect someone to never make a mistake.
8. 90% of the things we worry about doesn’t happen. This could mean that the things we worry about are stupid, but it also explains that because the fact I put some thought into the possibility of alternative outcomes to the preferred, I take caution that these not occur. Example: I worry I am going to fail out of school; therefore, I study and go to class. I worry someone is going to steal my roommate; therefore, I lock the door. I worry the bottom of my jeans will get wet and I will be forced, god-forbid, to walk around all day with that clammy-ankle feeling; therefore, I wear my cute brown rain boots when it rains.
9. people are afraid to admit they were wrong. Personally, I love having the confidence to admit when I screwed up. Everyone’s so afraid for what they have to lose if they admit they messed up. The smallest things too: saying, “Sorry I’m late. My alarm didn’t go off,” instead of saying, “Sorry I’m late. I didn’t wake up to my alarm” puts the blame on an inanimate object instead of yourself. Ironically, people will think greater of you if you can explain it was you who made that mistake. It’s an admirable quality.
10. dishonesty is lying on your face. Building off of admitting we were wrong, sometimes people forego the truth to save themselves. This is stupid and selfish.
11. music can move mountains. Lyrics are wisdom.
12. “laughter is the only thing that’ll keep you sane.” -Drew Holcomb.
13. faith is a necessity. Put faith in something.
14. don’t put extra laundry detergent in a high-efficiency washing machine.
15. everyone is different. get over it. If you think that racism, sexism, and all the stupid isms we have to have because of a holes are something of the past, you need to lift up that rock that you’ve been living under because people are persecuted every day. For the dumbest things imaginable. Why it is so hard to grasp and accept the idea that we are different, and born different, I don’t know. What I have learned is that I don’t have to take it.
16. my parents are incredible. I love both of my parents so much for so many different reasons I’m sure you don’t want me to list. The things they have done for my brother and me are countless. I’ve learned so much from the both of them. I appreciate the fact that they let me make my own decisions. I appreciate the fact that they let me make mistakes. and I appreciate the fact that I know they have been there for me every single one of my 7,300 days. (7,580 if you count when I was in the womb:) )
17. if anything, it is important to be thankful for what we have. Somehow, I was dealt an awesome hand. (which I find funny because in real poker, I have horrible luck.) I am so thankful for everything that I do have, and wishing I had this and that is silly when I take a step back and see the beautiful people and opportunities that have been put into my life.
18. being outside is principal. It’s no question that the environment is therapeutic. Humans weren’t meant to box themselves up. We started in nature, so obviously we feel closer to the world when we get outside. Camping, Hiking, Jogging, building a snowman for heavensake. If there is one thing I have learned, it is that a weekend away can clear your mind and your soul (just maybe not your fingernails).
19. Everyone has different talents, and it would be a waste of time to sit around suffering through jealousy. I’ve been there. I’ve spent too many days wishing I could play like this or draw like that. Trust me. I went through middle school. If there’s one thing I learned it’s some people can make the softball team, and others cannot. Shoot!
20. I am by no means wise; I am by every mean still learning.

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