In the last few days leading up to my 29th birthday I was in an unusually pensive state. The word unusually is deceptive. Let me give you a brief bit of context. I am a chronic over-thinker. My ability to think myself out of (and into) problems, has like many of my other traits, imprisoned and set me free me at various points in my life.
What was unusual about this particular period is that not only was I having thoughts within thoughts within thoughts (some weird Inception type thought process). I was undergoing significant paradigm shifts. The past year taught me a lot of lessons. All these lessons came from all the different people I interacted with, the challenges I faced and the words I read.
As I reflected on all this I finally began to understand what the last year had been attempting to teach me. So armed with a reckless enthusiasm and a furious animosity towards the past year I set about writing down some of the lessons.
Here are 29 of some of the lessons I have learnt in the past year;
1. You have to be honest. You have to have the courage to be honest with yourself and other people about who you are, how you feel and what you want. Lies will lock you up, with truth the only key.
2. Do not be afraid to walk away from people in order to save yourself or retrieve the person you once were. The people who are really for you will understand.
3. Sometimes a dream broken is a dream worth having. Don’t give up on your dream. God put it in your heart for a reason. If he placed it in your heart, he has already created the means for you to fulfill it. Stay in faith. Protect and fight for your dreams at ALL times.
4. Anything someone says before ‘BUT doesn’t count.
5. Attention is the rarest and purest form of generosity.
6. It’s not all about you.
7. If you admire somebody go ahead and tell them. People never get the roses when they can still smell them.
8. If a girl likes you she likes you even with your lack of game. Your lack of game might in fact be your game.
9. Don’t go around breaking young girl’s hearts. No Billie Jean. Sigh … This world didn’t deserve Michael Jackson
10. Don’t give fear the majority vote at the table of life
11. The grass is greener where you water it. You must be at peace with yourself and your path. Stop looking at what everyone else is doing. Focus on your own plan.
12. You are not alone in your struggle. Everyone is fighting their own Chimurenga. Lets be kinder to each other.
13. Doubt your doubts.
14. You don’t need Batman when you have got Robin Van Persie.
15. It’s better to be a Clown-Ninja, have everyone think you are weird and be at peace with yourself, than to fit their description of normal and be at war with yourself.
16. Silence can just be as therapeutic as music.
17. Consciously make your choices, or your choices will consciously make you. Deciding not to decide. Not a good look.
18. Twitter is unbeatable for aphorism, great for anecdote, decent for poetry, useless for analysis, and the eye of a newt for surrealism.
19. When it comes to your goals be the Michael Jordan of your Dream Team.
20. Sometimes a stranger is more likely to help you out in the way you really need to be helped than a ‘friend’. (I still can’t understand why this is.)
21. The toothpick kept in mouth is like a middle finger to fine dining.
22. “What” and “if” on their own are two words as non-threatening as words can be. But put them together and they can bring you a lifetime of regret
23. We are bigger than the worst thing we have ever done. Don’t let it hold you captive. Learn to forgive yourself and other people.
24. Never stop learning. If you are the smartest person in a room, you’re in the wrong room. Get out and find a room with people smarter than you.
25. Great writing is like that other thing: hard to define, but easy to recognise.
26. Love is simple. It’s people who are complicated.
27. Fulfillment and love come from honoring real emotional connections. Despair and chaos come from failing to rise to the occasion.
28. Breaking up with a lover is one thing …. But, breaking up as friends is heavy.
29. I am a grown ass kid. I have still got a lot of growing up to do.