10 Things I learnt at 22

by - March 08, 2018

Sorry for the lack of activity recently, I actually started this post mid-January but my laptop broke and I've been without it for almost a month, therefore this post is a few days delayed. I've finally got my laptop back and I'm ready to get back into the swing of things!

People always say when you get older, you grow wiser, and I'd like to think I'm a part of that saying. A year or so ago I saw a video from one of my favourite YouTuber/Vlogger Weylie where she lists 23 things she learnt at 23. Since it was my birthday a few days ago (9th March). I thought it would be the perfect time to reflect, try to have a clean slate, start fresh (so cliche I know!) now that I'm 23.
Grab yourself a drink, some snacks, this is going to be quite a lengthy post!

(In no particular order)

1. Friends
Growing up I always thought having a lot of friends, knowing a lot of people was the "bestest" thing ever. To me it meant popularity, getting to hangout all the time, but most importantly having people "there" for me. But sometimes in life, it doesn't work out the way we want it to. As I got older it felt like everyone around me, their circles were either getting bigger or tighter, whereas mine was getting smaller and smaller, it made me jealous that I didn't have the friendship those people had.
There has been times where I would ask myself "do I actually have any friends?", "why does everyone seem to cut me off/stop contacting me?", "is there something wrong with me, what have I done wrong?", then I start becoming more bitter the more I ask myself those questions.
However, when I got over these thoughts, I started to understand the value of quality over quantity. While there are still times where I still feel like that, and I can count all my friends on one hand. I've come to realise that we're all adults now, and we all have our own busy lives to lead. It's normal for friendships to become distant and estranged, no matter how much I want things to go back the way they were.

2. Be Proud Of My Achievements
From a young age, I was very active in my school life, I'd join clubs, help out with whatever events they had going on, enter competitions, I'd win quite a few of them too. I even won a small amount of local funding to help with supplies I would need for university, such as stationary, books, travel fare, etc. But for some reason instead of being proud of my achievements I keep them all wrapped up under lock and key, to the point I almost forget about them myself!

It wasn't until last year at university where I had a module that required me to list my achievements/what I've been doing to further my progression towards my career that I realised I needed to see how much I've achieved. I've always thought of my achievements as something small, there's people out there my age who's done way more and better at things than me, so mine are not worthy to be made a fuss out of. It was actually my lecturer who helped me realise my achievements weren't just "nothing". He told me during my feedback that I undermine myself too much and I should be shouting my achievements out, because they are something to be proud of. They're not "nothing", they're something he'd tell me.

3. Confidence
I’ve always struggled with confidence which has led me to miss out on a lot of opportunities, especially while at university. For whatever reason my head tells me to avoid situations where I’m on my own and know no one. Because of this mentality, I’m now paying for it when looking for jobs since my CV/experience is weak.
But recently I went on a 3 day workshop all by myself to try gain more knowledge of the industry I want to get into. As soon as I saw I got accepted onto the course, not going to lie, I panicked thinking what am I to do since I’ll be on my own and the days are 8-9 hours long, but in reality, I really had nothing to worry about because those were the most insightful and inspiring 3 days I could have ever come across.

Although I’m still not 100% confident in seizing opportunities for myself, I’m slowly getting there one step at a time!

4. Stubborn
I need to admit when I need help and accept the help from others when it's given. I always find it troubling reaching out to people for assistance. I'm so use to doing things alone now, that any time I'm struggling, instead of asking for help I procrastinate and push it aside.

5. Motivation
Basically.. I need to be my own self motivator. When I put my mind to things I can do them straight away and efficiently too. It's just a shame I waste so much time trying to find the motivation to make the first move.

6. Don't put too much pressure on myself
Or allow others to do so. There has been too many times where I've allowed too much pressure on myself, and it has affected me heavily throughout every little task I've done that day. I've tried and seen such a big difference when I've just allowed myself to breathe and to take it easy. I've had people come up to me and tell me that they've noticed a difference when I don't have as much on my mind.

7. Family
In the last year or two, I'd say my family has gotten tighter, on both my mum and dad's side. I speak with my mum's side of the family more frequently, we're sharing more happy news, we make an effort to keep everyone in the loop since they're in HK and I'm in the UK. I'm hanging out more with my dad side of the family, and it's always so fun, especially games night, I love it when we're all together just laughing, and enjoying each other's company. These are the people that grew up with me and watched me grow up. I know we're family and it's a given, but I really hope they're with me for the next years.

8. Extrovert turned Introvert
I used to be quite out going when I was younger, but as I got older and friendships started breaking off, I started to stay in more. I'm so much more comfortable with staying at home or hanging out at friends houses than going out now. Any time someone asks me if I want to hang out, I actually freak out a little bit and start to feel super anxious especially if I've agreed to it. But I am learning to say yes to more people now, and trying not to be so scared of the world haha..

9. Take Pride In Who I Am
During my school days I use to get a lot of racism thrown my way, and people would make fun of how I looked, and *tried* to mock my language. There was even a point where I wished I wasn't Chinese and refused to speak a word of Cantonese unless it was to my grandparents as they don't speak English.
Now that I'm in my 20s I LOVE that I know another language, I love that I can understand cultural differences from both my British and Chinese side, I love that I travel a lot to Asian countries, it's where I have the most fun, I love that I've grown up being exposed to many amazing tasty food, it's also where my I learnt to handle spicy food haha! Long story short, I love being British born Chinese, and no one can tell me otherwise!

10. It's ok not to be ok
I don't quite know how to explain this, but I just know I don't have to have it together all the time. It's ok to feel.

Melody xo.

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