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Top 25 Things I've learned in 25 years of life

As I turn 25 today, I am excited about being a quarter of a decade and was reflecting on all the experiences I have up until this point. In honor of my 25th birthday, I am launching this blog and wanted to share the top 25 pieces of wisdom I have learned through my own experiences, learning from people, and reading advice during these first 25 years.

  1. All experiences have a purpose and they always prepare you for something later on in life, whether you see it in the midst of your situation or not.

  2. People are so different in their varied behaviors, but the motives are often the same: we all are searching for love, acceptance, connection, joy and purpose in life

  3. At the end of the day, most people are doing and trying their best

  4. You can’t do better, until you know better

  5. When someone’s on your heart, reach out to them. You never know what’s going on in their life. There’s always a reason you were thinking about them and couldn’t get them off of your mind

  6. Saying yes to opportunities leads to the best things in life!

  7. Practice being open with people. Learn how to start conversations with ‘strangers’ around you -- you never know where it will lead or what opportunities present themselves from that

  8. Traveling opens our hearts to other people’s stories, and our minds to new ways of thinking and doing things

  9. Love and compassion always win

  10. It’s not always about you-- sometimes life just happens and people get caught up in what they are going through without intentionally trying to hurt you

  11. Showing up is one of the most valuable characteristics of a true friend. Be there, show up even when it’s inconvenient for you. It builds trust in the relationship. There’s nothing like knowing someone has your back.

  12. Kindness is free and it’s something you can give to everyone you interact with.

  13. Say yes to travel.

  14. There’s money and resources out there for you to travel for free if you are willing to search out those opportunities and plan your trip differently.

  15. Stay in contact with the people that matter most to you. Relationships don’t build themselves.

  16. Practicing self-awareness is a great skill to have.

  17. As a student, there’s so many ways to gain experience before graduation even if you don’t have “job experience”. Organize events, solve community problems, start a program, lead a club.

  18. Do things you actually care about, instead of just trying to cushion your resume. Your future self will thank you for it

  19. You are never too young to create impact

  20. One day you will look back at your haters and naysayers and thank them for all the things they told you wasn’t possible, when you use their negativity to propel you forward

  21. The most challenging times build your character, emotional strength and mental fortitude.

  22. Don’t neglect your spirituality, all life stems from there.

  23. Celebrate others’ wins and they will celebrate you in return

  24. You become like those who you are around most, make sure they are people you would want to become

  25. It’s worth it to keep going and to not give up

What wisdom would you share with your 25-year old self? Let me know below in the comments!

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IMAN COOPER

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Baltimore, Maryland, USA

©2020 by Iman Cooper