Sixteen Things I Wish I Knew Before I Was 16

school is starting soon, so here’s a little bit of what I have learned in the past three years of high school.

1. your life is so much more than the moments you capture. it’s the moments you live. you can’t always live behind your phone. you can’t always get that moment on your snapchat story, and that’s okay. taking pictures is a good thing don’t get me wrong, it’s great to look back on those times. but your social media page, what you capture on your phone, does not define who you are. you are more than what your Instagram feed looks like, I promise. you will meet some wonderful people and may never get their phone number. sometimes, leaving your phone at home is a good thing. live in the here and now. 

2. when you’re fifteen and someone tells you they love you, you’re gonna believe them. and yes that is a taylor swift song. but she’s so right. I’ve spent many nights driving home crying over some boy listening to my girl t swizzle. and it’s okay to cry over a boy. some dudes make you feel like the luckiest girl in the world, and some boys break your heart. the good news is this: they’re silly boys. no seriously, you’ll find the right one eventually. i know it may not seem like it because he was “so special.” but fo-real, you’ll be okay. you’ll sing a new song again. trust me. hearts break and love begins again. cry it out girlfriend, but keep one thing in mind, you are loved in such a way no guy can ever love you. hold on to that love.

3. don’t grow up. i know i know, you wanna move out. you wanna get married, have ten kids. all that good stuff beyond high school. but please, stay young at heart. build forts. eat gummy worms. watch Disney movies. if you don’t feel like going to that party, then don’t. if you wanna dance like a seven-year-old in her room rather than a seventeen-year-old at a club, then dance. stay pure. make new friends. laugh until you cry. be a kid.

4. if you only have one friend, you’re good. i’d rather have just one honest friend who is like family, than thirty million distant friends. If i can’t be my genuine self around them, it’s not worth calling them my best friend. if they don’t lift me up, if they don’t bring out the best in me, it’s not worth hanging with them. you don’t need a thousand followers or a big group of friends if you have one true friend to lean on. it’s great to be friends with everyone, but popularity will overtake your mind and your heart will hurt if you can’t cherish the few people who love and know you better than yourself. 

5. chipotle is life. if you wanna be fit and skinny, go for it. but if you are really craving that massive burrito and wanna top it with a triple scoop of mint chocolate chip ice-cream, go for it. because you can always go to the gym tomorrow……… or not. seeing skinny girls with hot bodies and nice abs can be motivation but it can also make you self-conscious about eating that double cheeseburger. i don’t want to say to myself, i wish i ate more fries while my metabolism was fast. it’s okay to let your tummy be happy. 

6. listen to your mom. if she doesn’t like him, he’s not the right guy. if she doesn’t like your friends, she probably knows them better than you do. she’s been there. she wants the best for you. give her a spontaneous hug instead of spontaneous attitude. 

7. sing in the car at the top of your lungs. i don’t have tinted windows and i really should invest in those, but who cares if people see me act like a fool? you don’t have to know every lyric to that one song everyone is listening to. you want some high school musical? gotcha head in the game. be silly. be bold. be freakin’ weird. 

8. you don’t have to have life all figured out yet. you don’t need to know what your major is. you don’t need to know who you’re gonna marry, where you’re gonna live. you may feel like you’re falling behind, but i promise you, you will get there at your own pace. there is always something you will have left to figure out. 

9. be nice. there’s too much hatred in this world already. everyone needs a smile, a compliment, someone to walk with them. don’t let them walk away unhappy. be a friend.

10. girls will be mean. boys will be jerks. rumors spread, lies are told, secrets are spilled. it just shows you who your friends are. words can have a huge impact on someone. you can’t always have thick skin. you’re gonna cry. but hold on, it gets better. don’t stoop to their level, stay the bigger person. silence is key. watch your words. turn the other cheek. even though it may seem like no one sees your hard work, or your pain. you are seen by the One who cares too much about you.

11. time heals all things. don’t let a chapter of your book write your whole story. it may seem like this season is long, never-ending, and unbearable. but it will get better. consider it pure joy when you experience various trials. you will run with endurance. the race is not over. in the valleys and on the mountains you have the same God. it takes time. look at the past five years, how much has your life changed? your race is not over. 

12. it’s okay not to be okay. you can’t always be sunshine and daisies. life is not always a box of chocolates. cry. hurt. be honest with your feelings. you are weak. but you will be strong again. 

13. you belong. you are not alone. though you may walk in a crowd of people and feel so alone, though you may have many friends but feel as though no one knows you, like no one sees you. you belong. you have a place here. the Creator has set a table and has saved you a seat.

14. you are not who they say you are. i’ve been called so many hurtful things. I’ve believed every single one of them. but i wish i had known my identity is not found on the lips of those you don’t know my heart. 

15. you are what you say you are. speak life unto yourself. gas yourself up. stick cute little sticky notes on your mirror, in your car. if you tell yourself you’re fat, your own self, how can you encourage others? if you can’t love yourself how can you love others? 

16. you do you boo. the world needs more than just Starbucks loving girls. it needs world changers. the world doesn’t need a million kim kardashian’s, or a million sadie robertson’s. it needs you. it needs your uniqueness. don’t be someone you are not. you do you.

psalm13914

live like you are fearfully & wonderfully made; because you are fearfully & wonderfully made.

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