1. You have a voice for a reason - speak up
Stop wasting time thinking about what you should have said or what you wish you could say - speak up, tell others how you feel and move on. It is pretty damn liberating when you're not carrying those thoughts around every day.
2. There's no time to feel embarrassed
Worrying about what other people think will only get you so far. You want to strive for your peers to think you're kind, hard-working, honest, a good friend. Less important matters to focus on are whether or not they think you're cool or pretty. You are cool. You are pretty.
3. You're not the only one who feels lost
Arguably 100% of people aged 18-25 are confused AF about the real-world and are spending the majority of their day gasping for air. No matter how many of your friends seem like they have it all figured out, they don't. They have their own worries that matter just as much as your own. You're all still learning how to grow up.
4. You won't feel lonely forever
Sure, you have brunch on Sunday or maybe a boyfriend to date and watch Netflix with at night but do you still feel lonely sometimes? So does everyone else. Often times, no amount of people will alleviate the feeling that something is missing. You won't stop missing your family, your best friends, how things used to be - but you'll learn how to deal with it. I promise.
5. It's okay if you don't have your dream job yet
Just because that one girl from your economics class is killing it on LinkedIn doesn't mean you're a loser. Work hard to figure out WHAT you want to be doing, not necessarily where you want to be doing it. Nobody cares if you work for a Fortune 100 company if you're miserable. Find something that you can't get enough of and chase it relentlessly.
6. You're allowed to have feelings
FORGET all the fckboys who taught you to ignore your feelings. You're sad today? BE SAD. You're sort of pissed off and you don't know why? Go for a rage run! You're missing home? Eat an entire pint of ice cream. *FEEL** every emotion and try to understand why you're feeling that way. You're allowed to fell any way you want. Own your emotions.
7. You are capable
The real world is terrifying. There are an immeasurable amount of things that can challenge your self-worth. Sure, it's always okay to have a mini-pity party but don't let that become a regular thing. CHIN UP, girlfriend. As Cristina Yang once said, "you are the sun."
8. You're allowed to say "no"
Those girls who can literally stay out until 2am on work nights are not the majority. Get rid of your FOMO and say no every now and then. Sure, that dinner may have been a fun night out, but it's also really fun to order Postmates and watch Gilmore Girls on your couch by yourself.
9. You're also allowed to say "yes"
Sometimes a really strangely wonderful opportunity peeks around the corner at you. There is a part of you that's terrified, another part of you that is curious. Even if your life is going just fine, explore that curiosity. Never forget about something that keeps you up at night.
10. You don't need to lose 3 lbs
This time in your life can bring a little -- okay A LOT -- of frustration surrounding your body image. You're just now learning that going to the gym does matter and your weekend mimosa habit has led to you spending some cash on a wider waistband. Take some time to learn how your body reacts to things and then alter your diet so you're making healthy decisions for your future -- not so you can say the number on the scale is lower.
11. You aren't entirely you yet
Try to avoid worrying about figuring yourself out. You'll get there. It takes literal years to find out who you want to be and to become that person. Now is the time to explore those areas and learn about yourself. You're still so young. You are legitimately never going to stop changing, developing into a better version of yourself. Don't rush it.
12. It's okay to let go
Really bad things happen to everyone. People hurt you, things change, stories end before you were ready. Part of you will always feel this emotion harboring somewhere in the deepest, darkest corners of your heart but it's important to know that it's okay to let go. It's okay to move on.
13. Stop trying to be like her
Sure, she's cute. She has cool stuff, nice hair, naturally Kylie-esque lips. But that's who SHE is. There is probably someone out there who wants to be just like you, too. Be a role model for them and show how confident you are in being YOU. Leave it to Suess to say it right: today you are you, that is truer than true, there's no one alive, who is youer than you. There's nothing more wonderful than finally loving yourself.
14. Everyone else is just as scared as you are
Chronophobia: the persistent and often irrational fear of passing time. Time is scary. There's sometimes too much of it, often too little. It's unpredictable, infuriating, and absolutely inevitable. Learning to be okay with change, accepting that you may not know who you will be/what you will be doing a year from now is extremely difficult and it's OKAY to be afraid.
15. Nobody is as cool as they look on instagram
In 10 years time, nobody is going to remember that you had 3K instagram followers. You know what they will remember? How fun you are. How crazy that night was. Your laugh. Try to spend less time focusing on your social presence and more time appreciating the moments you're missing. Life is better when you're in front of the lens.
16. You are intelligent
Sometimes your first job can really challenge you. You may feel like you weren't prepared for this, or like you may as well give up. Don't. Don't give up and don't fall victim to that rotten feeling that you're not good enough. You are intelligent. You have accomplished so much in your life, you are a QUARTER of a CENTURY old! There are so many things you know, so much knowledge in every crevice of your spectacular brain.
17. You are extremely valuable
This is an important one. When it comes to evaluating yourself for a job, a relationship, an opportunity - remember that you are valuable. Don't let someone undermine your value because they intimidate you. Stand your ground, and fight the good fight because you EARNED that value and you should be appreciated.
18. You're going to forget about him someday
It may not be someday soon, it may be tomorrow. No matter what that timeframe is, remember that it will come. You will stop hurting. You will forget why you're sad. Beautiful memories are waiting for you around the corner.
19. You are worthy
Say this one out loud: you are worthy. Let's do that again... say, "I AM WORTHY." You've made mistakes, you've broken hearts, you've hurt people that you love. All of these things are hard, but they do not devalue your worth. You are worthy of wonderful things. You deserve happiness, compassion and love. Don't ever let anyone (especially yourself) tell you any different.
20. You are not as broke as you think you are
Take some time to think about what you DO have rather than what you DO NOT have. Remember that there are people who literally have nothing. There are people who aren't eating dinner tonight and others who do not have a place to sleep. If you have food, if you have shelter, if you have people who love you and help you - you're a lucky one.
21. You are always allowed to change your path
Just because you majored in Accounting does not mean you have to be an accountant the rest of your life. What we decided to do at 18-years-old might not be the same thing we know and love at 28. Try to embrace other opportunities and don't be afraid to explore something new. You're going to be working for a really long time, so do something you love.
22. Savor the moment
You're probably at that age where you're starting to realize that nothing lasts forever. Spending time with your family makes you happy, you miss your friends from school, you wish you would have called that one person more often. Remember that 5 amazing friends will ALWAYS be better than 25 just okay friends and skipping that Netflix episode to call Grandma instead will always be worth it.
23. You are so beautiful
You probably still have some acne scars, your hair is damaged and 6-weeks overdue for a cut, your skin is annoyingly greasy and your thighs definitely touch at the top. It's likely that you haven't developed your style yet and you're still experimenting with that eyebrow arch, right? Your imperfections are perfect and without these things you'd be boring as hell. YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL. You're beautiful today, you were beautiful yesterday and you will be beautiful tomorrow.
24. You are not alone
There are so many other people who feel exactly how you feel. People who need to hear these things just as much as you do. Find solace in knowing that it's completely okay to feel like the world is spinning sometimes...you are not alone.