20 things I learnt before turning 20

I get a bittersweet feeling whenever I catch myself thinking about turning 20. For me, it is an important milestone: it is kind of scary, since I think about how craaazily freaking quick time goes. You are not a “teenager” anymore, and now the age of 18 seems quite distant…

Okay, I am exaggerating a bit, it is not that far away. But what I mean is that when I was little, it seemed like I was never going to reach the age of 18: everything was full of “forevers”. And being near the age of 20 makes me realize how important it is to live every moment, because they might be gone sooner than you think.

Anyways, besides the “time is scary” thoughts, being near 20 made me think about how much I have learnt about life in general… and I am amazed by the idea that the “Amaia” from two years ago wouldn’t even recognize the “Amaia” from now. So, I made this list to inspire you as well as to have it as a reminder myself.


So, here is the little list I made


1) Thoughts are more powerful than you think. Having a positive attitude (even towards bad things) will bring you more positive outcome (or maybe it is because you change your perspective towards it?.. Anyways, it works).


2) Invest more in experiences and relationships and less in materialistic things. At the end of the day, those are the things that truly make us happy. Not the more you have, or the amount you were paid for your job.


3) Love yourself. The most important relationship in your life is your relationship with yourself. Have a good relationship with yourself and it will affect your relationship with others. Plus, “you live most of your life inside of your head. Make sure it’s a nice place to be.”


4) Love your family. Tell them. Nothing is more valuable than the people you love and your relationship with them.


5) Never give up on your dreams. Even if people discourage you. Find motivation on that discouragement and be self-driven.


6) Trust your intuition. Be more aware of that inner voice. Everyone has it, we just need to pay a little more attention to it. At first, it is a silent whisper, but when you learn how to listen to it, it becomes a roaring lion.


7) Do something you are “scared” of every day. Be aware of your fears, and do not run away from them. Nourish them.


8) Nothing is sexier than having a passion in life.


9) Don’t be afraid of failure. Fail, a lot, and often. Every time you fail, you get better at figuring out how the hell to succeed. It gives you the opportunity to learn and to be resilient. And you learn to appreciate success.


10) Be grateful for what you have. Most of us tend to take things for granted, and usually we are so busy with our lives we may not even stop and think about this. Stop and appreciate. Everything. Even the bad things (as stupid as it may sound). Next time, stop and smell those flowers you always walk past.


11) Be at peace with yourself to the point where hurting those who have hurt you does nothing for you.


12) Travel as much as you can. In my opinion, I have grown the most as a person while travelling. It gives new perspectives and makes you appreciate your hometown even more.


13) Live life now. Not in the future, not in the past. Do not expect to be happy only “if you achieve something”, or “in 3 years when I finish my degree”. Be happy now. With what you have.


14) Be yourself, loudly. Don’t let other people’s opinions control you and do things for yourself, not to please others. Don’t place your value on other people’s hands. Someone’s criticisms of you is more a reflection of themselves than a reflection of you.


15) Be inspired by others, not jealous. Instead of wishing to have someone else’s life, focus on becoming your greatest version.


16) Work hard for what you want. You may regret it in the future if you don’t.


17) Get enough sleep! It affects health, mind, and appearance more than you think.


18) Focus more on “giving”. Sometimes giving to others can give you more than anything else.


19) Spend time with yourself. Enjoy spending time alone. It helps to get to know yourself and you get the opportunity to reflect on what you truly care about.


20) Read more books. I did not really like to read some years ago. It was because I was reading the wrong books for me. Enjoying reading is just about finding the type of books you like.




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