23 Things I've Learned In My 23 Years Of life

Photo taken in the streets of London by  Stef Etow .

Photo taken in the streets of London by Stef Etow.

My short 23 years have taught me quite a lot. I'm sure I have plenty to learn but here's what I've learned so far...

1. A broken heart HEALS with time. Sometimes a lot of time. But it heals.

My biggest heart break was when my high school boyfriend kept breaking up with me and then wanting to remain close friends...and then do it all over again. I let this cycle go on for too long and allowed this experience to keep me broken. It took a long time to recover from this. I must say, I'm still scarred but time did do the trick. 


2. English people speak funny

English culture is fascinating. British people say things like spoilt (instead of spoiled) and biscuits (instead of cookies). Some refer to dinner as lunch and tea as dinner. I still don't completely get it. Also, their accents aren't as lovely as Americans think. Once you live in England you realize certain areas have horrible accents!


3. It's beautiful to be diverse

I grew up in the U.S. and very much identify myself as an American. But I can't deny the fact that I'm Hispanic. I mean, just look at me. Black hair, dark brown eyes, and tan skin. I'm clearly not white. Just to make things even more fun, I now live in England with my British husband. Being diverse has prepared me to be open to other cultures and different "class" (rich or poor) of people. I'm thankful for that mindset. 


4. Stress Less

I freak out and worry, just ask my husband. But I'm learning that if I can't do anything about it, I just need to set it aside and move forward. Too many of my worries are really just "what ifs." I don't need to stress about those things.


5. Being married is hard

Being married is like living with a roommate that you don't always get a long with. You love them but, man, sometimes you hate them. Marriage isn't supposed to be easy but I know the journey is shaping me into a better person. 


6. Being married is fun!

If you're married, I'm sure you know how nice it is to snuggle with your other half before you go to bed. And you know that by morning you'll have drifted off to your side of the bed. A few days ago I woke up and realized that my husband was still holding my hand after a whole nights sleep. What a way to wake up! It made me feel all googly about how much I love him. As much as marriage is hard (we fight a lot) I'm happy to adventure through this journey with him. 


7. Maybe you should give yourself longer then 2 months to plan a wedding

Planning a wedding takes time. If you want it to be perfect, give yourself plenty of time to prepare. If you don't really care then I suggest eloping. Sometimes I wish I did. Steven and I ignored our guests for most of our special night (which I feel a little guilty about) because I realized that I just wanted to remember us on our wedding day.


8. Being a career woman is empowering 

During my childhood, I dreamed of being a doctor or a stay at home mom. As I grew up I realized some bigger dreams of mine (yes, I just quotes T.Swift!) and I went for them. They have instilled a confidence in myself that just keeps me chasing those career dreams. 


9. You can have your cake and eat it too

It doesn't always have to be one way or the other. Sometimes you can have it both ways. Basically, I've given myself the chance to say yes to having my cake and eating it too. Go out to dinner and a movie. Or take that trip and pay for rent. It doesn't always have to be one or the other. Have you cake and eat it too. 


10. I want to be my own boss

I always knew I wanted to work from home or my own office but it took me a while to realize that meant being my own boss. There's nothing like playing the game on your own terms. It was a decision I made because I knew I was going to be happier running the show my way. 


11. Don't keep things bottled up inside

Have those difficult conversations. You're mind plays tricks on you and a real story can turn into folklore and myths inside you head. By the time you have that hard conversation, you're freaking people out with the lies your mind has created!


12. Friends are Important

Don't take them for granted. When life changes, you'll always need those life long friends and they'll need you. But don't forget to invest in new friends. We all need new friends at different seasons of our life.


13. Talk to strangers.

Whether its via Instagram or the person sitting next to you on a plane, talk to strangers. You never know who you'll meet and how they could change your life...or how YOU could change their lives. (Click here to find out how a complete stranger has become one of my dearest friends!)


14. You don't have to be related to be family

I grew up far from my extended family. They all lived in Peru or Panama. In fact, I've never met some of my extended family. It's a hard thing for me to grasp but I've been fortunate enough to have friends who I can call family. 


15. But, There's nothing like your immediate family

Because I didn't grow up near extended family, my immediate family became my world. They were my people, my tribe, my village. They make me feel all types of emotions (mostly happy or angry) but at the end of the day, I love them forever. I mean, how fun is it that they look like me?!


16. Do what you love....no matter what people think.

I cared to much about being popular in high school and fitting in. I hate that I wasted my time on that but I've learned to love who I am. I still have plenty to learn in this area but I love the me that I am right now. And that me is chasing after her dreams, no matter what people say. 


17. Take Big Leaps

Spend $1,000 on that trip to England. Start a new company. Ask the guy you've had a crush on for months out. Get a puppy. Invest in that amazing program you know will equip you in your biz. Quit your job. Buy a new house. Whatever it is for you, don't be afraid to take the big leap and go for it! Don't limit yourself!


18. Fight the good fight

I get angry with my husband easily. In fact, I get angry or annoyed easily with those closest to me. I'm learning to fight the good fight. What fight is that? The one in my mind. I need to let things go and only argue about the really important stuff. I don't want to ruin a good day by getting upset about something meaningless. I'm still learning how to do this but I've already noticed that this new mindset is slowly changing my life for the better. 


19. Parents are priceless. 

"Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the LORD your God is giving you." Exodus 20:12.

I don't care if your a Christian or not, but these are important words to live by. Honoring my parents has been really beneficial. I haven't always loved honoring their wishes but in the long run I see how their wisdom and love has protected me from making silly decisions. 


20. Cats and dogs are real life teddy bears...which is awesome!

I was the baby of my family. I am a wompin 7 and 9 years younger then my brothers. So my parents got me a dog. He's since passed away but he was a real life teddy bear. He was there for me when I needed him most. That sort of bond is special. I only wish he knew how thankful I was for his company and love. He made me feel like a million bucks. I can't say many people I know make me feel that way. 


21. Miracles happen

Daily I'm reminded why I believe in God. The fact that I wake up everyday is a miracle. The gift of life is a miracle. There are so many stories of people being healed, or people who get a gift that covers a need, etc. Miracles are everywhere. In fact I'm sure you could find at least one article about a miracle in your Facebook newsfeed. Can't find any, check out Upworthy


22. People are kind

I think people are naturally bad/selfish but desire to be good. Some of us allow our badness to rule our thoughts and actions. An act of kindness can melt the hardest of hearts. People desire kindness from others. They want to feel loved and valued. People can change and be kind but, like my fist point, it takes time. 


23. People are people.

Two of my heroes are Scott Harrison, Founder of charity: water and Dale Partridge, Founder of Sevenly, professional blogger, and entrepreneur. My other heroes are related to me.

I once met America Ferrara, the actress from Ugly Betty and The Sisterhood of The Traveling Pants. During the 2 to 3 minutes I got to chat with her, I was dumb founded! Everything that was coming out of my mouth sounded like gibberish. I was totally fan girling and it was embarrassing. Today, I've realizing, American Ferrera, Scott Harrison, and Dale Partridge are just like me. Like me, they are people with a dream. They might be better known then I am but they are just normal people who sleep, eat, brush their teeth, and have families. Saying it gives me the confidences I need to pursue my dreams just like they have been. 


Do any of these points resonate with you? What somethings important you've learned in your lifetime? 

I wanna know, tell me below! 


Beth G. Harper