This month I turn 25. I feel good about this quarter-century birthday. As I step firmly into my mid-twenties, I’m reflecting on more lessons learned so far. You can read similar posts from 2016 and 2017 if you like.
1. I’ve changed in many ways over the last ten years. I’m less anxious, more settled. More ambitious in some areas, less so in others.
2. In some ways I haven’t changed at all. I still enjoy reading, writing, musicals, being in bed at 9:30pm and most things involving Reese Witherspoon.
I haven’t written about this topic in a while, because it hasn’t really been on my mind. I’ve worked hard to overcome my past eating difficulties, so I know this time of year is challenging for many. As the January dieting onslaught arrives, I want to share the advice I wish I’d received a long time ago.
Now that Christmas and the new year are very much in sight, I’ve put together a list of my personal highlights from 2017. This year included difficulties, like losing our wonderful Grandad in September and our darling dog just a few days ago. But reflecting on positive experiences doesn’t take away their significance.
I’d love to hear about the best parts of your year too. Here are mine:
Last September I shared 23 things I’ve learned by 23. Now approaching my 24th birthday, I’ve put together another list. I’m all for lifelong learning.
Here we go:
1. You can’t and don’t need to do everything. Prioritise your commitments.
2. Qualities can be more important than qualifications.
3. Social contact can help you live longer. Make sure to ‘build your village’.
4. What a stranger at a train station thinks of you really doesn’t matter.
“Things are both fine and not. Beginnings and endings are happening side by side. Life is messy and important and joyous and heartbreaking.”
These words from Meg Fee sum up August for me. This month, grey days stretched into sunny evenings with people I love. I worked, rested, then became ill and played less than I would have liked to. I visited the Peak District with work friends, appreciating slow, shared meals and a break from screens.
This is my third podcast recommendations post (click to read part one and part two). I keep finding new series to listen to when I’m travelling, washing dishes, in the bath or wherever else. If you think of any others I might like, please let me know in a comment or tweet!
18. The Debrief Podcast
With humour and good advice, Stevie and Tessa tackle topics faced by many people in their 20s. If you’re in Edinburgh this month, I’ve heard Tessa’s show is great too.
Recommended episode: How To Do Things That Scare You.
I recently visited Italy for the first time. I met my parents in Florence, where we stayed in a charming, convenient Airbnb for four nights (Friday to Tuesday).
I was excited about the culture but slightly apprehensive about what three coeliacs would eat in the land of wheat pasta and pizza. As with Amsterdam, I researched places beforehand and we managed well.
Here are some highlights from our trip.